If you have a spot in your home where you want to replace a traditional hinged door with a sliding door, you stand to benefit in several ways. No door swing means you save space and can utilize the area around the door more easily. Sliding glass patio doors are also wider than regular doors, allowing more natural light to shine in and providing a better view of the outside. Sliding doors are also often more aesthetically pleasing than traditional doors. In order to enjoy these benefits to the fullest, you need to know a few things before installing sliding doors. Become familiar with these points when doing your research.
Traditional doors have standard widths, but sliding glass doors come in a variety of sizes that you should consider carefully. Measure the wall where you want to install the sliding door. Do you have room for a full-size, 6-foot-wide installation? Only one side slides open and closed while the other half remains stationary, but you still need room for the entire door width. If space is limited, consider a more conservative 4- or 5-foot-wide sliding door. You can even look into custom doors that fit the space you have perfectly.
Ideal Types of Materials
The most common materials used for sliding doors are wood, aluminum, vinyl, and wood with vinyl or fiberglass cladding:
- Wood is a classy option that provides an unmatched aesthetic and increased home value, but it’s prone to warping and cracking if you don’t care for it properly.
- Aluminum is exceptionally strong and long lasting, able to withstand all types of weather conditions, but it’s not very energy efficient because it conducts heat.
- Vinyl is also durable and unlike aluminum has great energy-efficient qualities, but the color selection is limited and the end appearance is often considered lower quality.
- Vinyl and fiberglass cladding is composed of a wood core covered with vinyl or fiberglass. This removes the maintenance associated with wood, but it could also allow issues of rot to go undetected beneath the cladding.
If you choose to install sliding glass patio doors in a coastal region of California, be aware that you need to perform certain maintenance steps to keep the door in good working condition for many years to come:
- Once a month, clean the exterior door frame, glass and handle to remove sand, salt and other corrosive material.
- Twice a year, lubricate the locking mechanism.
- Vacuum debris from the door track regularly to remove deposits that could corrode the hardware.
- Rinse salt and debris from the screen as it builds up.
If you’re ready to install a new sliding door somewhere in your home, please contact us online or call us at 818-483-3531 to get started.