Stable doors are often associated with traditional country cottages. Sometimes referred to as a Dutch door, they allow for greater freedom on how you open them.
Stable doors are split into two sections horizontally, allowing each section to open independently or together as a ‘standard’ door. This means that you can open the top part of the door while keeping the lower part of the door closed. As a result, these doors are often viewed as a mixture between a window and a door.
Timber stable doors will normally not have any glazing in the lower section, with the top section often being partly glazed.
Stable doors were originally used at the back of farmhouses, allowing you to ventilate the house without letting in the farm animals.
They are also used to allow horses to have access to fresh air, while remaining safe in their stall, with the added benefit that the horse could stand with its head out the top half of the door.
Although they are still used for these purposes today, timber stable doors also have multiple benefits for other homes, some of which are listed below…
How stable doors help with ventilation
Stable doors allow you to open the top section of the door in a similar way to how you would open a casement window, while keeping the bottom panel locked in place. This means that you can ventilate your home, letting in fresh air and natural light, by opening just the top half of the door.
Having the lower section of the door closed also helps prevent the wind from blowing dirt and leaves into your property.
Households with young children and pets
For families with young children or households with dogs, stable doors can be an easy way to ventilate the property while keeping them safe inside by opening the top section of the door, while keeping the lower section locked shut. This also means that you can keep them outside so that muddy dogs can’t come in!
Similarly, if you have cats, stable doors allow you to let the cat out into the garden without having to open the door fully, as cats will normally be able to jump up and over the door.
Traditional and authentic
As well as the practical benefits, stable doors are also aesthetically elegant.
Commonly associated with barns, they also look at home in traditional farmhouses and cottages. Their traditional style makes them a perfect fit for period properties and newer builds looking to replicate the charm and character of older homes.
What about security on a stable door?
Stable doors can be just as secure as casement windows and other back doors. The doors operate by having separate secure locks in each section of the door, with an additional lock to hold both the sections together when you wish to fully open the door.
Replacing a timber stable door
Like other windows and doors, there are a range of different timber, glass, ironmongery, and finish options that you can choose from when looking for a new stable door.
Accoya is a popular timber choice as it is both very durable and stable. It is a sustainably sourced manufactured wood and comes with a 50-year anti-rot guarantee, allowing you to be confident in its longevity.
Different types of glass can offer different benefits, such as increased security and acoustic benefits. Consider whether you want clear glass, frosted glass, or even coloured glass in the glazing part of your stable door.
Ironmongery will play a large part in the security of the door, so check the quality of the ironmongery as well as checking that the ironmongery you want to use will work in a stable door.
At The Sash Window Workshop, we have been manufacturing and installing traditional timber windows and doors, including stable doors, for around 30 years. We are period property specialists and, where necessary, can comply to Conservation Area and listed building regulations.