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white french style patio doors

How to Pick the Perfect Patio Doors

Winter still has a while to go, but we’re already dreaming about all the exciting plans we have for spring. One of the simplest ways to revitalize your outside entertainment area is with a fresh set of patio doors. If this is a project that you might consider in the warmer weather, planning ahead now will make your final selection quicker and easier.

Every home is different, but there are four simple questions you can ask that will help give you some insight on what you’re looking for. With this information, you’ll be all set to pick the perfect set of patio doors for the coming year.

1. What Do You Want Your Door to Do?

The obvious answer is, “Open out onto the patio,” but taking time to really consider this question will help you get a clearer idea of the kind of door you want. For example, is the goal of your new patio doors to let in more light, or is it to provide a sturdier access point to a busy kitchen? Does it need to withstand the excitement of kids running in and out during the summer, or can it be more intricate to create the perfect party space?

2. What Type of Door Do You Want?

There are many different types of patio doors to choose from, and you’ll likely be able to get the best idea of each by seeing them in person, but for now, here’s a quick overview of the most common varieties.

  • Sliding Patio Door – This is arguably the most common type of patio door. It’s composed of two panes of glass on a sliding track. One or both panes can be slid in front of the other, creating an entry space where the pane used to be. As these doors do not swing out and sit flush with the rest of the wall, they’re a popular choice for entryways that may not have the room for a swinging door.
  • Hinged Patio Door – This patio door functions like a typical hinged door, by swinging either inwards or outwards to allow passage.
  • French Doors – Composed of two (typically lighter) hinged doors, French doors are the go-to choice for an effortlessly stylish space. They swing either inwards or outwards, but what makes them stand apart is the complementary glass patterns they frequently feature.
  • Folding Patio Door – This unique option opens and closes in an accordion-style, making it more suited to large entertaining spaces. It can be made with many different materials to accommodate any style of home.

Think about the furniture and wall space of the room where the door will go. Make sure that the type of door you have in mind will fit in the space you have available. A wider design, such as French doors, will help increase your access to and appreciation of an outdoor entertainment area.

3. What Kind of Glass Do You Require?

Frosted glass can help diffuse light and provide an extra layer of privacy, whereas clear glass allows you to fully appreciate the beauty of your surroundings. Do you want one large pane to make up the entire door, or are you picturing multiple, small, decorative panes?

You’ll also need to consider the temperature requirements and special considerations of the place you live. In the Barrie area, for example, most of our clients favour energy efficient glass panes. Customers who want to make sure that their belongings don’t fade in the sunlight will make sure that their glass is rated to protect against UV rays.

If you’re not sure what kind of glass would be best, ask a friendly advisor for help.

4. What Material Do You Have in Mind?

As with patio door types, there are many different material varieties that you can consider. You’ll likely get the best idea of each by visiting a showroom, but here’s a quick look at what you can choose from:

  • Fiberglass
  • Wood
  • Vinyl
  • Aluminum
  • Steel

Remember that different materials will weather in different ways. Wood is unquestionably a beautiful material but does tend to warp and may require more maintenance over the years. Fiberglass, aluminum, and vinyl hold up well in outside weather, and are easy to clean and look after. It all depends on what you want from your space.

See Your New Patio Doors In-Person

Even when you think you know what you’re after, it can help a lot to see what’s available on the market. To help out, Kempenfelt Windows & Doors has two showrooms with a wide selection of the latest and most on-trend patio doors. Swing by and take a look around, or, if you can’t make it during our normal hours of operation, contact us directly to request a private, no-obligation viewing.

For more information on our patio doors or door installation packages, give us a call at (705) 737-1554.

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