French doors are also referred to as French windows because they were first used as oversized windows opening out to balconies, characterized as having a lot of glass. This kind of design gives it an elegant and timeless appearance that complements a range of architectural styles perfectly, allowing French doors to work with basically any home.
During the 17th century, renaissance architecture put heavy emphasis on light, which is why French doors use of a lot of glass. However, glass panels are fragile so mullions were used to provide structural stability. While the mullions, and the door frames themselves, have traditionally been made of wood or wrought iron, modern French doors can be made from a variety of materials, like steel, aluminum, vinyl, fiberglass, and composites. Their glass portions have also improved throughout the years, today fitted with advancements like, low-emissivity coating and multi-pane construction, to offer better function on the overall.
Depending on what is preferred, a French door can come in either a hinged or gliding configuration. Hinged French doors can also be made to swing in or out.
So why go for a French door as a patio door replacement?
For many homeowners, French doors are attractive because they offer incredible aesthetic appeal, creating a brightly-lit, space-expanding effect in the home. The large amount of glass surface the door has not only lets light in but also contributes to the illusion of space by allowing you to see beyond the door even when the door is shut. This leads to a seamless connection between indoor and outdoor spaces in your home.
But while French doors will indeed give your property an aesthetic boost, they are also more than capable of improving function in the home. For instance, letting in a lot of natural light lets the door support daylighting efforts, reducing your dependence on artificial light during the day. Opt for French doors fitted with low-E, double-pane glass and you’ll also enjoy more stable indoor temperature, which prevents your HVAC system from working overtime to keep you comfortable, no matter the season.
French doors make great patio door replacements because they strike the perfect balance between form and function.
Have a patio door replacement in mind? Head on over to Part 3 of this blog series to learn more about the importance of proper installation.