There are three types of drawer runners: Soft-Close, Self-Close, and Push-to-Open. Sometimes called “touch-release ‘.Some drawer slides have a particular motion feature as default while others only offer it as an option.
The drawer will self-close when it reaches the end of its travel. It’s easy to accidentally leave drawers open during the bustle of cooking and to make it bounce back if you close it too hard. A self-closing slide can correct this error. The basic self-closing slide will close the drawer abruptly. It can be equipped with either a spring mechanism as on telescoping models or a ramped track which is standard on epoxy slides.
Soft-close models have a damping mechanism that slows down the drawer’s closing to prevent it from making an audible sound. This helps to reduce noise and prevent the shifting of drawer contents. It also prolongs the life of the drawer slide.
Push-To-Open (Touch Release)
Push-to-open drawer slide allows you to eliminate drawer pulls completely if you want to reduce visible hardware. A spring mechanism opens the drawer by pushing on its face. This allows you to reach inside the drawer and pull it out. This allows you to create a modern, clean look and save money. These slides can also be used in areas where space or clearance is a problem, such as mobile homes or corners where a drawer pull could collide with adjacent cabinets or architectural elements.
What Load Rating Do I Need?
Standard metal drawer slides can support sufficient weight to be used in the kitchen every day. These drawer slides can hold loads of 75 to 100 lbs. There are situations when a stronger slide may be required. A Heavy-Duty slide is recommended for drawers that can support heavier objects, such as large file drawers, pantry pullouts, or tool drawers. These are made from thicker metal and have more ball bearings for maximum durability.
What Finishes Are Available?
You can choose from a variety of finishes to match your drawer slides. Finish matching is most commonly used for furniture pieces. However, it can also work in a cabinetry high-end to enhance the style and blend in with the hardware.
What Slide Length Is?
There are many options for lengths available, with most slides being available in increments of approximately 2 inches. You’ll want to reduce the dead space at the cabinet’s back by choosing a slide that is as large as possible. However, ensure that the slide has enough room inside the cabinet to allow for proper operation. Consider any obstructions inside the cabinet such as stretchers or nails, and whether your drawers have full-inset or overlay. Full-inset drawers reduce the maximum depth. Side-mount ball bearing slides should generally be the same length as the drawer box. Check the spec sheet for under-mount slides. These slides require drawer boxes to be constructed to specific depths (front and back) to function properly.
Special Application Slides
A special-application slide may be required if you are building something other than a standard drawer. These include light-duty slides that can be used for keyboard trays, robust slides for garbage pullouts, pantry pullouts, or ”heavy-duty” slides for large file drawers. For truck beds, mobile homes, and other special uses, extra-long slides are available in lengths of up to 60″.