Drawer Design and Slides

Drawer opened


Discover the Different Types of Drawer Slides and How They Enhance Drawer Design

Drawers are a fundamental piece of furniture in most households. They are used to store all kinds of things, from clothes to tools, and they come in various styles and designs. But have you ever thought about the mechanism underneath the drawer that allows it to open and close? That mechanism is called a drawer slide.

In this article, we will take a look at the different types of drawer slides available and how they can be used to enhance drawer design. We will also discuss the benefits of different types of drawer slides and provide tips on how to choose the right one for your needs.

Introduction to Drawer Slides

Drawer slides, also known as drawer glides or runners, are the mechanisms that allow drawers to open and close smoothly. They are mounted on the sides, bottom, or even underneath the drawer, depending on the slide type.

Drawer slides come in various sizes and styles, but they all have the same basic components. They consist of two parts: a stationary part, usually attached to the cabinet or furniture piece, and a moving part, which is attached to the drawer itself. The two parts are connected by a set of rollers or bearings, which allow the drawer to open and close smoothly.

Types of Drawer Slides

Drawer slides come in five different types. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to understand the differences before making a purchase.

Side Mount

The most common type of slide is the side mount slide. As the name suggests, these slides are mounted on the sides of the drawer. They are typically made from metal and have a pair of tracks that the drawer slides on. Side mount slides are generally less expensive than other types of slides, but they are also not as durable.

Bottom Mount

Bottom mount slides are similar to side mount slides, but instead of being mounted on the sides of the drawer, they are mounted on the bottom. This type of slide is more expensive than side mount slides, but they are also much more durable and offer better stability.


Undermount slides are mounted underneath the drawer, which makes them great for drawers that are too shallow to accommodate side- or bottom-mounted slides. They are more expensive than side- or bottom-mounted slides, but they offer a much smoother operation.


Push-to-open slides are a newer type of drawer slide that does not require the user to pull the drawer open. Instead, the user simply pushes the drawer in a certain direction to open it. These slides are more expensive than other types of slides, but they offer a more modern look and a smoother operation.

Soft Close

Soft close slides are a type of slide that slowly and quietly closes the drawer. This is great for keeping drawers from slamming shut, which can be noisy and can cause damage to the drawer over time. Soft close slides are more expensive than other types of

Each type of drawer slide has its own set of benefits. Side mount slides are the most affordable option and are great for applications where cost is a concern. Bottom mount slides are more expensive, but they offer better stability and durability. Undermount slides are great for shallow drawers, while push-to-open slides offer a more modern look and feel. Finally, soft close slides provide a luxurious feel and keep drawers from slamming shut.

How to Choose the Right Drawer Slide

When choosing the right drawer slide for your needs, there are several factors to consider. First, consider the weight of the drawer. If the drawer is very heavy, consider using a more durable slide, such as a bottom mount or under mount slide. Second, consider the size of the drawer. If the drawer is shallow, then an under-mount slide may be the best option. Third, consider the type of look you want. If you want a modern look, then a push-to-open slide may be the best option. Finally, consider the cost. Depending on your budget, you may want to opt for a more affordable side mount slide.

Drawer Slide Installation Tips

Once you have chosen the right drawer slide for your needs, it’s important to install it correctly. Make sure you read the instructions provided with the slide carefully and follow them step-by-step. It’s also a good idea to measure the drawer and the cabinet to ensure that the slide will fit properly.
When mounting the slide, make sure to use the appropriate hardware. Many slides come with screws and brackets that are designed for the slide. If you are unsure of what type of hardware to use, consult the manufacturer’s instructions or ask a professional for help.

Common Drawer Slide Problems & Solutions

Once you have installed the drawer slide, it’s essential to check it regularly to ensure it is working properly. If you notice any problems, such as the drawer not opening or closing properly or the slide making too much noise, you may need to make some adjustments.
The most common problem with drawer slides is that they become loose over time. To fix this, tighten the screws that hold the slide in place. If the slide is not functioning correctly, you may need to replace the rollers or bearings.


Drawer slides are an essential component of drawer design and can enhance the look and feel of any piece of furniture. There are five main types of drawer slides available, each with its own set of benefits and drawbacks. When choosing a drawer slide, it’s important to consider the weight, size, look, and cost of the drawer. It’s also important to install the slide correctly and to check it regularly for any problems. With the right drawer slide, you can ensure that your drawers open and close smoothly for years to come.
SketchList 3D allows you to create drawer designs that include slides. The slide designs reflect the degree of detail needed for your purposes. See this article on drawers in SketchList 3D.

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