A “Sidelight” is a window or piece of glass that is placed to the left side or to the right side (or both) of the frame of a door. This window is designed to allow more natural sunlight into the home but also provides a more enhanced look of importance to an entry way. This is why sidelights are commonly used on front doors, however they can be used on any exterior or interior door. Many times, sidelights are accompanied by decorative glass inserts within the door itself.
The biggest concern with sidelights typically relates to reduced privacy and this can be something to consider when selecting the glass type. Clear glass obviously allows for maximum natural sunlight but offers little privacy options. If you still want clear glass but want privacy options then using clear glass with enclosed blinds can be a great solution. Another solution is to use a more decorative piece of glass as the decorative glass offers many different privacy levels while still allowing a large amount of natural light to pass though. Decorative glass can come in many different design styles and it is recommended to choose a design that compliments the other design elements of the home.
Things to consider:
• Light and Privacy desired
• Overall home style
Considering these other elements when selecting the design for your sidelight glass is important to complementing the rest of the entrance way.
Sidelights come in three popular height styles. The height style can depending on personal preference but also on how it complements the rest of the entryway.
- Half Light
- ¾ Light
- Full Light
“¼ light” and “¼ light square” options are also available but are less common. Sidelights are available for the most common residential door sizes including 6’8″ and 8’0″ doors.
The majority of sidelight windows come in a rectangle shape which makes them easier to measure and install. To measure properly, you’ll want to make sure you are measuring from the outside edges of the frame. Knowing the width and height measuring from the outside edges of the frame usually provides an accurate measurement needed for your sidelight.
A = Sidelight Glass Width including Frame
B = Sidelight Glass Height including Frame
When working with an oval / circular shaped sidelight, measurement can be much more difficult.