When the time comes for Long Island homeowners to replace outdated or poorly performing exterior doors, there are several options. The two most common door styles seen adjacent to patios, decks and side-entrances are the Double Door and Standard Patio Door.
In the replacement window and patio door industry, and here at Renewal by Andersen of Long Island, we refer to these door styles as Hinged-French Style Patio Doors and Sliding Patio Doors. Both allow easy entrance and exit, but there are some distinct differences in the way the two styles function.
Replacement Sliding Patio Doors vs Hinged-French Style Patio Doors
Sliding Patio Doors are factory built with two or more movable panels and at least one stationary panel. Customization allows homeowners to decide whether to have the active panel in a two-door configuration slide to the left or slide to the right. In a three panel unit, both panels slide to the center in front of or behind the stationary panel.
Hinged-French Style Patio Doors usually have two active panels that each resemble a stand-alone entry door. The pair of doors can be configured to either swing inward or outward. Double doors utilize an astragal – a wood strip that covers the “gap” between two door panels. Hinged-French style patio door installations usually allow you to open either door independently, as well as swing both open wide.
Bonus Fact: An astragal is also used when you choose to install a pair of replacement casement windows hinged on opposite vertical edges to create the look of traditional, old world French doors.
Complementing Your New Patio Door with Modern Replacement Windows
Designing entrance doors connecting your outdoor spaces to indoor living areas includes carefully considering your home’s age, architecture and size. A massive French Style door could easily overpower the simple structure of a small Cap Cod, while the same door would be a perfect fit for your “traditional” Georgian or multi-story Colonial.
Outfitting the Traditional Home on Long Island
Traditional home styles on Long Island are not all the same. You’ll find brick, stone, stucco, and wood (shingle, shake and lap) exteriors. Some homes have street-facing gables. Most, but not all, have symmetrical shapes, sizes and window placement. Hinged-French style doors complement most traditional styles, like those mentioned above. And, as long as you stick to a clean, time-honored, traditional color palette and window grille layout, you can install casement, double-hung, and bay/bow configurations in most traditional home styles. If you install transoms above your fixed windows and replacement patio doors or plan to add side-lights, try to mimic the grille pattern, too, as this will have a “balancing effect,” even though the shape and size varies from your other fixtures in the home.
Updating Your Craftsman Home with “Matching” Replacement Windows & Patio Doors
Living in a Craftsman home? Low-pitched roof lines, thick boxy columns on the welcoming front porch and a few extra details, such as a dentil shelf above the entrance door, can define Craftsman homes. You’ll also see exposed beams not typically seen in some other traditional styled homes. These are some of the defining features that draw people toward the Arts and Crafts era dwellings. French style patio doors will showcase your patio entrance. When considering replacement windows that will complement your new patio doors, think simple, clean lines. Examples include rectangular windows that are taller than they are wide, or an equal leg arch above the rear entrance – remember to choose the full divided lite grilles designed to perfectly mimic legacy Craftsman construction. Two double-hung windows side by side bordered by a decorative frame also look beautiful and beautifully matched in this architectural style. Don’t hesitate to add patterned glass to your side-lights and transoms.
Contemporary Solutions for the Modern Long Island Homeowner
Contemporary homes are everything traditional homes are not. Asymmetrical. Flat, or very-low profile roof lines. Clean, unadorned replacement window design – skip the grilles and patterned glass all together. The goal here is to bathe your indoor spaces with as much natural light as possible. Choose replacement windows with narrow frames to expand the viewing area. Casements, sliders and large fixed windows are good choices. And, a sliding patio door will usually usher in more light than a French style patio door.
Coordinating Renewal by Andersen Replacement of Long Island Windows & Patio Door Styles is Easy with a Personal Design Consultant
Every Long Island home has a unique character and vibe. If it’s time to update your home with Energy Star certified replacement windows and patio doors, we can help. Simply fill in the short form on this page or call 1-877-313-9052 to schedule an in-home consultation with a replacement window specialist today.
Download our Free Guide to Long Island Replacement Windows
- The Difference Between Replacement and New Construction Windows!
- The Different Kinds of Frame Materials and What That Means to Your Windows’ Performance and Longevity!
- How the Right Glass Can Save You Money on Your Heating & Cooling Bills!
- The Critical Role Proper Installation Plays in the Performance, Durability and Warranty of Your New Replacement Windows!
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