Soft Close Drawer Slides
Drawer Slides

All You Need to Know About the Push to Open Slides

push to open drawer slides

When you first hear of a drawer that opens without having you pull the knob or handle, you might envision an electronic mechanism controlled by a remote for the magic to happen.Still, things are much easier than you imagine. A drawer like this doesn’t necessarily use a motor or batteries to open. All it needs is a slight push that activates the slide’s spring. This article covers push to open drawer slides, providing you with details about their operation, special features, and benefits.

How do push to open drawer slides work?

A push to open slide requires a push to release the face of the drawer. The mechanism is incredibly simple. Behind the whole opening magic, there are a spring and a trigger. When you push the face of the drawer, the trigger engages the spring, pushing the drawer back toward you. The spring releases the drawer partially, allowing you to complete the movement by hand, depending on how far you need to reach. Note, though, that the weight of the drawer contents also impacts the spring’s opening power. An empty drawer will be pushed farther by the spring than one full to the brim with household items.


1. Modern look

The lack of drawer pulls provides a slicker cabinet look. Sometimes, knobs and handles are regarded as superfluous element that interferes with the smooth finish of the drawer. The push-to-open feature removes pulls from the equation, ensuring nothing distracts from the slick cabinet design.

2. No handle repairs  

After years of using the drawer, it’s inevitable that issues related to the knob or handle appear. It may get loose and wobble or break under too much stress. Sometimes, you repair the handle, other times you decide to replace it, which costs you time and money.Extended use causes the handle to lose its initial luster, becoming dull and negatively affecting the appeal of the entire cabinet.With a touch release drawer slide, these issues are in the past.  

3. Space-friendly

Push-to-open slides are the preferred choice when space is limited in the kitchen or any room with drawers. They enable you to place the drawer in narrow corners, preventing collisions with nearby furniture when open. While a removed handle may not significantly save space, it can be crucial in tight areas where every inch matters.


The touch release slide’s advantages outweigh its disadvantages by far, but we must admit that some minor cons exist. They mostly refer to the functionality of the spring, which is, no surprise, exposed to wear and tear and daily stress and, thus, can lose vigor in pushing the drawer open or break down. Another disadvantage is if the spring breaks when the drawer is closed, it will be quite a challenge to open the drawer since you don’t have a grip on the exterior. Fortunately, though, such an issue is not likely to happen, if your slide is high-quality.  

Full-extension vs partial extension

Though all push-to-open slides include a spring and trigger, there are additional features that differentiate between slides. One of them is the type of extension. A full-extension mechanism enables the drawer to open fully, providing easy access to all its contents. Some slides only extend partially, requiring you to stretch your hand under the cabinet countertop to reach items. This can make partially extendable slides uncomfortable, especially if you have numerous items to store and are forced to stuff things in the back of the drawer. If storage is minimal, ensure you place contents in the front for easy access when opening the drawer.


What is a push to open soft close slide?

An integrated soft close feature allows for the drawer to shut smoothly and silently. The soft-close mechanism slows down the drawer when it’s about to meet the cabinet. No matter how forcefully you push the drawer, the damping element neutralizes its high speed, ensuring a gentle closing. This protects your cabinet frame from aesthetic and structural damage, prevents potential injuries to your kids, and avoids drawer contents from flying around due to a sudden stop.

push to open

push to open

Side mount vs under-mount

When you choose a push to open drawer slide, make sure you pay attention to such detail as the type of mounting. Both side mounts and under-mounts are efficient and provide a smooth glide motion, yet the underneath mounts come with some advantages. Being hidden under the drawer, they allow for more a appealing look. Side mounts are visible when you open the drawer, which in some people’s opinion spoils the aesthetics of the cabinet.

But, as long as the drawer stays closed most of the time, this shouldn’t be a problem. An aspect you are better off to take into consideration is the accumulation of dirt and cleaning. The location of under-mounts makes them hard to reach for grime, dust, and spills, allowing you to spend less time and effort on cleaning them. Side mounts are more exposed to dust and dirt, so you are expected to clean them more often.

Closing thoughts

Push to open slides offer a modern and convenient solution for opening cabinets and drawers. They are easy to install, require minimal maintenance, and come in a variety of types to suit different needs and budgets. Consider upgrading to push to open slides for a sleek and functional addition to your furniture. Have you used push to open slides before? Let us know in the comments.