Sliding glass doors are many a homeowner’s favorite feature: combining the look of a window with the functionality of a door, sliding glass doors offer the best of both worlds.
That is, of course, if the sliding glass door is in good shape. That’s not always the case. Not all sliding glass doors are created equal. While the concept of sliding glass doors has been around for a very long time, only recently has the technology developed to create sliding glass doors that are energy efficient, easy to operate and maintain, and affordable.
Older sliding glass doors, especially those with more than a decade’s use on them, have a few things in common. They tend to be heavy, especially if they feature dual pane glass. Sliding glass doors move on rollers, and in older windows, these rollers were not made of stainless steel. That means that the rollers trapped in the aluminum frames were prone to rust — and once those rollers were rusted, they were difficult to move. Operating a sliding glass door with a rusted roller mechanism is a great test of brute strength but not much fun for younger or older family members who simply want to go outside.
At the same time, older sliding glass doors are notorious for leaking. Cold drafts and foggy glass are common issues — problems that can be eliminated by replacing your sliding glass doors.
What are the options for replacing sliding glass doors?
If you want to keep the benefits of a sliding glass door — the view and sunlight from a window, combined with easy access to the outdoors — you’ll want to replace the unit with another unit that offers those same benefits. You have a number of choices, including:
A newer sliding glass door: Modern sliding glass doors feature enhanced energy efficiency and improved mechanisms. You’ll have worry-free enjoyment of your window for years upon years.
French doors: Double doors that open from side hinges, French doors are a beautiful, elegant alternative to sliding glass doors. They are also an energy efficient option, and can change the appearance of your home.
Patio doors: Similar in nature to French doors, patio doors feature one door that opens while the other stays closed. This enhances the energy efficiency further, while still creating an elegant and inviting appearance.
Sliding patio doors: An increasing popular hybrid, sliding patio doors offer the traditional appearance of a patio door with the functionality of a sliding glass door.
No matter what style you select, you’ll want to have your contractor carefully inspect the sill and framing before installing your new door. Sliding glass door frame are famous for their tendency to rot or harbor all sorts of creepy crawly critters. There’s no sense installing a new door on a crumbling sill, so you’ll want to have that repaired.
With your new sliding glass door in place, you’ll be able to realize the full enjoyment of your home: breathtaking views, framed through energy efficient glass. No more cold drafts or the uncomfortable feeling one gets upon realizing nearly half of the home’s heatis leaching through the window. Best of all, easy and elegant access to your yard — ensuring that you can enjoy your home inside and out!