Building entrances play an important role in maintaining a comfortable indoor climate and protecting against cold or hot outdoor temperatures. In commercial buildings, two types of access products are often used: sliding doors and revolving doors. Both have their own advantages and limitations, and here we discuss what to consider when choosing automatic sliding or revolving doors.

Durability and energy efficiency

Because an automatic sliding door opens every time users want to enter or leave a building, heated or cooled air is lost. To prevent this, a draft lobby or draft portal can be created by placing two sets of sliding doors back-to-back with a minimum of four metres between both sets. They can be set so that they do not open at the same time. This is a good solution to limit energy loss, but is not always the most practical. What we often see is that a draft lobby construction with sliding doors leads to irritation for users who have to wait for each other until the next door opens.

In terms of durability and energy efficiency, a revolving door is often a better choice. People entering and leaving the building do not get in each otherʼs way. Drafts are greatly reduced due to the principle of rotating door wings with closing brushes all around, keeping the indoor and outdoor climate separate. This is not only good for the environment, but it also saves a lot on your energy bill.

Passage capacity

The passage capacity of an entrance is also an important point to consider. A single automatic sliding door has a high passage capacity, allowing users to enter or leave a building freely. However, if a draft lobby construction has been chosen, the passage capacity decreases greatly.

A revolving door has a lower passage capacity compared to a single sliding door, but is better for maintaining a comfortable climate. This type of door provides clear access and an easy traffic flow. It is especially suitable for allowing people to enter and leave a building smoothly and consecutively, without letting in drafts. For large numbers of people, a large diameter revolving door, such as a Duotour or Tournex can be chosen, or multiple smaller revolving doors can be used.

Available floor space

A single automatic sliding door takes up little space and is therefore particularly suitable as an automatic door inside a building. Assuming that energy saving is important, a vestibule with two sets of sliding doors is required for the facade. For proper operation, both sliding doors must be placed at least four metres behind each other. This requires a significant amount of floor space.

A revolving door can be placed inside, outside or offset in the facade and therefore requires much less floor space than a vestibule with sliding doors in almost all cases.

Barrier against theft

Revolving doors are often considered one of the most effective ways to protect buildings and shops against theft. Unlike a single sliding door, a revolving door forces intruders to enter and exit in an orderly manner. This also applies to a vestibule construction with sliding doors. This makes it harder for burglars to escape the building easily. In addition, it is more difficult to take large items with you in the segments of a revolving door. The use of revolving doors also forms a mental barrier for burglars. The thought that they will be faced with an orderly process of entering and especially leaving the building, can act as a deterrent.

Aesthetics with sliding doors and revolving doors

One way to add aesthetics to automatic sliding doors is by using two sets of curved sliding doors, one behind the other. These sets of sliding doors can be placed together to create an elegant round entrance, which not only has an aesthetically pleasing appearance, but also creates a sense of space and grandeur.
In addition, there are other options to make automatic sliding doors aesthetically attractive, such as the use of coloured glass, the addition of lighting, or the application of specific finishes such as wood or stone. There are also various finishing options for the profiles, such as powder-coated aluminium or stainless steel.

Revolving doors are often seen as aesthetically appealing. The aesthetics of a revolving door can range from an ultimate eye-catcher to a revolving door that is self-effacing in the facade. There are many options available for the design and finishing of a revolving door, allowing for much to be possible in terms of aesthetics.

The basis of a revolving door often consists of aluminium and glass. This can be covered with materials such as stainless steel, brass, copper and even gold leaf. A wooden version is also possible. The canopy above the door is also excellent for attractive design. You could include a ‘crownʼ above the door or beautifully milled letters – there are many possibilities. Moreover, revolving doors can be equipped with additional aesthetic elements, such as lighting and decorative elements. There are even revolving doors with rotating showcases that enhance the aesthetic value and give a unique appearance to the entrance of a building.


Accessibility is an important aspect when choosing a door, both for automatic sliding doors and for revolving doors. Both door types are available in different versions that are suitable for people with disabilities.

In the case of revolving doors, a minimum diameter of 3 400mm, in combination with three door wings, is necessary to be suitable for wheelchair users. There is also a revolving door with a door set that automatically collapses as soon as the button for the disabled is pressed. This makes it possible to offer an unobstructed access for wheelchair users even with doors with a diameter of 2 800mm.

Both automatic sliding doors and revolving doors can be equipped with various features such as audio signals, braille markings and automatic door openers to make them accessible for everyone.

Do you want to calculate the energy savings of your revolving door?

In close cooperation with TU Delft, Boon Edam has developed software to do just this. The program takes characteristics of the building, such as dimensions, location and air permeability, and combines them with local weather information to accurately compare the energy consumption of a revolving door and a sliding or swinging door. The savings are shown in kWh per month and include a simple payback time calculation. Scan the QR code to find out more.