Published at Friday, October 13th 2017. by Gallia in Patio Doors.
Originally, patio doors were all of the French Door variety; that is, a pair of doors that are hinged at the sides and open from the middle, each door pivoting in- or out-wards. French doors are still popular, especially with builders of new homes, as they are comparatively cheap and easy to accommodate in place of windows and offer an alternative evacuation route for families, especially for elderly or disabled people, to meet improved fire safety requirements.
In the mid-20th century, sliding doors became very popular - two or three panels of glass that slide along grooves in the floor. To distinguish them from traditional French doors, they were marketed with the thoroughly modern name of Patio Doors and this is often the image people have today when that term is used. Easily installed in place of a window, the immediate advantages were additional natural light and access to the garden. They also became a popular option to use where a pivot door opening space was limited or where the aperture was wider than a pair of French doors. Older installations were typically single-glazed, prone to warping and usually became difficult to slide open and closed. Still available today but in a developed form with double glazing and rollers for easier sliding, the popularity of sliding doors during this century has declined as bifolding doors gained market share.
While sliding, folding or standard push-pull doors are part of style, they are given much important because they also have a lot to do with space. Sliding and folding patio doors are more preferred since they can give you more house space. Not only that, but a patio door that folds can also lead to a wide open patio that can make the sun shine in your home. Deciding on the type of opening for your door is based on your general preference; be informed though that there are many options to choose from.
While a wooden French door is normally constructed to be very sturdy, you will want to make sure that the wood that is used for the doors construction is kiln dried. This will ensure that the exterior side will hold up to whatever weather it has to endure. With most French doors, you will not have to worry too much about a door cracking or shrinking; but, you will need to apply either coats of paint or stain from time to time. The next type of french patio doors you will likely find are vinyl doors. These types of doors are perfect for people looking for an easy to maintain French door. A vinyl door is a very durable door and will likely last you a great many years. However, you will need to take caution as these doors are at risk for scratches and even dents.
There are also many styles of the patio door. Some patio doors are made using the French door design, where the single panel of glass is cut into several pieces. The door frame of the French door has mullions, the bars where the glass panels are attached. Using a French deck door still creates the same transparent effect, although with a little more elegance.Some deck doors make use of sidelights to create a more spacious look. Sidelights are door-length windows installed at either side of the door. They may only be windows but they also use glass panels, making them transparent and letting more light and view into the house. Sidelights may either be narrower than or as wide as the doors themselves.
Generally, timber frames are considered more traditional and can look beautiful! Hard wood such as oak is, as the name suggests, far more hard-wearing than a soft wood such as pine. Weather, especially strong sun, can take its toll on timber frames which could need to be varnished or painted annually. Wooden frames can swell and shrink with humidity, therefore opening and closing doors can require force and gaps can allow draughts in colder temperatures.