Indoor-outdoor spaces continue to enjoy their time in the sun. In fact, Zillow recently declared backyards to be a “must-have home feature” for 2023, while patios, porches, decks, and pools are also enjoying a boost in popularity.
The reason for the backyard boom? While the pandemic may have forced people outdoors, homeowners realized the value of their exterior spaces for everything from relaxation to entertaining.
While there are many changes homeowners make to improve their outdoor spaces, one important element often goes overlooked: the patio door. In addition to promoting easy comings and goings, the right patio door can serve many additional functions, such as security, curb appeal, hurricane protection, noise reduction, energy efficiency, and more.
Which begs the question: What is the “right” patio door?
In this must-read guide for homeowners seeking to maximize their outdoor living spaces, we’ll cover everything you need to know about replacing your patio door.
The Benefits of Patio Door Replacements
Given the increasing popularity of al fresco activities, many homeowners are looking to the latest trends in indoor-outdoor living for ideas and inspiration.
While a patio door may not initially seem like the most exciting upgrade, the reality is that your patio door can transform how you experience your patio for both functional and aesthetic reasons.
If you’re considering upgrading your patio door but you’re unsure it’s the best investment at this time, consider the following advantages:
Depending on the type of door you choose, the right patio door can help you maximize indoor space, outdoor space, or both. For example, if you currently have a patio door that opens inward, then you need additional clearance within your home. Upgrading to an outward-swinging door or sliding doors mitigates this issue.
If you’ve been making do with an old, outdated, or aesthetically ordinary patio door, you’re missing out on a major opportunity to elevate the look of your home. Today’s high-quality patio doors are available in a breadth and depth of design styles, sizes, and colors. They can also be customized to your precise specifications. The end result? A custom architectural feature for your home.
Seamless Indoor-Outdoor Flow
Successful indoor-outdoor living hinge on seamless flow between the two spaces—both visually and functionally. A thoughtful patio door can do both. In addition to offering virtually unobstructed views of your natural surroundings, a new patio door can also improve airflow and natural light.
Among outdoor living trends, meanwhile, accessibility is top-of-mind for many people. When it comes to mobility issues, modern sliding doors open and close easily while creating wide spaces for passing through.
Energy Efficiency and Comfort
If you’re looking to improve your carbon footprint while simultaneously trimming your energy bills, upgrading your patio door can also make a difference both in terms of energy-efficient features and installation. A more energy efficient home is also a more comfortable home as you’ll pay less to maintain your home’s ideal temperature while also reducing drafts.
But lower utility bills aren’t the only financial upside of replacing your patio doors. When you select durable and high-performance patio doors, you’ll also enjoy minimal maintenance and a longer lifeline. If you live in a hurricane-prone region, meanwhile, choosing impact resistant doors may even make you eligible for discounts on your home insurance.
Noise Reduction and Security
Cheerful birdsong aside, most external noise that enters home is unwanted. New patio doors can also block sounds thereby helping you to create quiet and peaceful indoor spaces. The same properties that keep out noise can also keep out would-be intruders—especially when you factor in that most crimes are crimes of opportunity. Most burglars will bypass a home with formidable doors and locks for an easier target.
Types of Patio Doors
Sliding Glass Doors
Also known as gliding patio doors, sliding glass doors open and close by gliding horizontally along a fixed lower track. Typically, they contain one fixed panel and one or more additional panels that slide from side to side.
While sliding glass doors have a clean, modern look, they complement a variety of design styles. Some additional benefits of sliding glass doors include:
- Adjustability and accessibility. Because of their design, sliding doors are extremely versatile in terms of their openings. Want to let in just a little air? Crack yours open. Want to maximize airflow and traffic flow? Open them all the way.
- Energy efficiency. Sliding glass doors form a tight seal that adds up to excellent energy efficiency.
- Safety and security. Unlike regular doors which can slam shut on windy days, sliding doors remain in place. At the same time, they open and close with ease.
- Natural light views. Because of their glass-centric design, sliding doors allow in ample natural light while reducing reliance on artificial lighting on sunny days. You’ll also enjoy uninterrupted views of your backyard, landscaping, and other natural surroundings.
- Compact design. In opening side to side, sliding doors neither intrude nor extrude on indoor or outdoor spaces.
- Ease of use. Well-designed and professionally installed sliding glass doors effortlessly open and close.
- Beauty. In addition to welcoming in the beauty of nature, sliding doors also offer simple yet chic curb appeal in and of themselves.
Similar in design to traditional hinged doors, French doors comprise an alluring mix of frame and glass panes. Dating all the way back to the French Renaissance, they offer traditional charm and character, while also offering many desirable benefits for modern living, which include:
- Flexibility. White often seen in pairs, single French doors are also a possibility, depending on your home’s design and any space constraints.
- Versatility. While French doors may be traditional in concept, they’re also extremely versatile and work well with a variety of interior design styles, including everything from modern to rustic.
- Natural light and views. Because they feature large glass panels, French doors maximize natural light and expansive views.
- Energy efficiency. French doors offer excellent thermal efficiency performance.
- Timeless style. French doors are known for their graceful and timeless beauty. In addition to providing excellent functionality, they are also an elegant architectural element within a space.
- Value. Because of their many functional and aesthetic allures, French doors have the potential to enhance your home’s curb appeal and make it more valuable when the time comes to sell.
- Safety and security. Especially if you opt for high-quality impact French doors, they can be an excellent deterrent against everything from extreme weather to burglars.
As you may have noticed, sliding glass doors and French doors share many overlapping benefits—especially when you opt for high-performance quality impact patio doors.
Patio Door Features and Materials
Once you’ve decided between French doors and sliding glass doors for your patio, the decision-making isn’t quite done yet.
When you partner with an industry leader like CGI, you’ll be able to customize your new patio doors across many functional and aesthetic aspects, including the following:
Different frame materials have different advantages. For example, aluminum is known for being lightweight, strong, condensation-resistance, and recyclable, while vinyl is celebrated for its durability, anti-corrosiveness, excellent weather-resistance, affordability, and traditional look.
Both vinyl and aluminum require minimal care and maintenance, especially compared to wood. You’ll also have your pick of finishes to create a polished final product.
While non-impact glass may be more affordable at first glance, it offers far less protection and durability than multi-layered laminated and laminated insulating impact glass. Factor in the amount of traffic in and out of patio doors, and laminated glass that’s less likely to shatter into dangerous shards comes with incomparable peace of mind—especially if you live in an area where hurricanes and other extreme weather events are common.
You’ve also got many color options—from unobtrusive neutrals to brighter, bolder hues—for your new patio doors.
Depending on the style of your home and personal taste, opting for gridded or gridless glass can help you get the exact look you desire. Additionally, details like decorative glass and unconventional shapes like arches and half circles let you turn an ordinary patio door into an eye-catching architectural feature.
Enjoy Seamless Indoor-Outdoor Living with a New Patio Door
While replacing your patio door may seem like an unnecessary expense if yours is working okay, making do with an unattractive, low-quality, or poorly performing patio door can detract from your quality of life at home.
On the other hand, upgrading to a high-performing sliding door or French door has the potential to enhance your living space in terms of both form and function for years to come.
To learn more about the many benefits of CGI impact doors and other exceptional products, find an authorized dealer near you.