Whether you're building or renovating a common debate to have is whether to choose sliding patio doors, or French doors. Both are good so it largely depends on your taste, and the style of your home.
Sliding patio doors can really open up your home, allowing more light to enter and delivering unhindered views of the garden. There have been vast improvements in the quality and durability of sliders over the years, as well as new technology allowing them to slide right back into the walls to create amazing indoor / outdoor rooms.
Sliding doors have a contemporary look and feel to them and work well with almost any décor. The most common style features two panels with uninterrupted panes of glass. One is stationary while the other slides along a track.
Sliders are great for ventilation
Sliding doors are great for ventilation and, a big bonus, they are probably the easiest to work with when it comes to installing fly screens or security screens.
However, many people still refer French doors, especially when renovating character homes, where sliding doors would look out of place.
There's a certain charm about French doors, an elegance that's hard to beat, especially if your home features polished timber floors, high ceilings, ornate plaster work or antiques.
While French doors are always hinged, not all hinged styles are French! The traditional French door has two openings set side-by-side, with both of them swinging either outward or inward, essentially giving you twice the space that's open to the outside.
French doors add charm and character
Hinged doors give you more ventilation options, as you can open either side by itself or swing both sides wide open, giving your home a greater expanse of fresh air.
It is certainly a little more difficult to add screens to French doors but it is now possible to buy screens that glide along an exterior track, much like the ones found on sliders.
French doors can really transform a room, become as much a design feature, as a practical item, which is part of their attraction.
Traditionally made of wood, French doors can create either an elegant Parisian apartment feel, or rustic cottage charm. Indeed, if you buy reclaimed French doors, you will be giving your home a real touch of authenticity and originality.
If you do choose French doors, and you are renovating an older home, you might considering also using traditional casement windows to add to the appeal.
Modern French doors come in not only wood, but also aluminium, steel and fibreglass, and can be fitted with opaque glass for increased privacy.
French doors will probably cost more to install in your home, and, of course, glass cleaning is a little more time-consuming because of the many, smaller panes of glass.