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Blog | Comparing Patio Door Styles - Hinged vs. Sliding

Comparing Patio Door Styles - Hinged vs. Sliding

Posted February 06, 2020

Are you in the market for a new patio door? Patio doors come in a number of different styles, but the two most common are hinged patio doors and sliding patio doors. The main distinguishing difference between these two doors is their functionality in how they open. Hinged patio doors have a hinge that allows them to swing open inward or outward by design and sliding patio doors have a track and are slid open to one side. All in all, patio doors can be a single or double door opening inward or outward, or they can be sliding doors.

Let’s explore the features of hinged and sliding patio doors so that you can make the best selection for your home.

Hinged Patio Doors

A hinged door can be available as a single, double, or even triple door and hinged doors can swing into a room or outward. Single doors can swing in or out while double doors can have one or both doors swing, and a triple door can have the middle door open or both end doors can open.

A hinged patio door is commonly referred to as a French door. A French door has a full-length of glass with a wide perimeter of wood, which is also known as the door’s stiles and rails. The glass in a French door can be divided by grill bars into many lites with 15 being the most common and there are a wide variety of grill pattern options for a full lite door.

There are many different varieties of hinged patio doors, such as double doors or those that swing open. The benefit to having two doors is that they allow extra space for moving items, and French doors also provide excellent views, an abundance of light, and give rooms a bright and airy appearance.

Here are a few more benefits to hinged patio doors:

  1. Highly customizable with the option for security locks
  2. Brings more light into the home
  3. Large entrances - perfect for entertaining or moving items in and out
  4. High durability thanks to high-protection-grade glass

Sliding Patio Doors

Sliding patio doors are a contemporary design where they typically have a full length of glass with a thin or skinny perimeter of clad wood, aluminum, or vinyl. Sliding patio doors can be made to look like a French door with a wider perimeter.  There are also a variety of grill options that can be applied to a sliding patio door like the French door, but remember the more grills on a window the less light that comes in and the more your view is obstructed.

Sliding patio doors typically slide open and closed. With their design, you can let in a comfortable breeze while keeping your home safe and private. The doors also provide a seamless flow between your indoor and outdoor space.

Additional benefits to sliding patio doors are:

  1. Increase natural light for energy and comfort
  2. Provide better views of your outdoor landscape
  3. Save energy thanks to the natural lighting
  4. Allow for more space (because you don’t have to allow for a panel to swing in or out)

2 Key Questions a Homeowner Should Think About When Deciding Between a Hinged or Sliding Patio Door:

1 - What is the objective for the patio door?

  1. Is it for new construction, replacing an existing patio door, or creating a new opening in your home?
  2. Is it to bring in more light?
  3. Is it to take advantage of your view?
  4. Is it to provide more space?
  5. Is it for convenience of entry?

2 - Do you have the space for the swing of a hinged door?

  1. Will it bump into to objects like furniture
  2. Will it obstruct the foot traffic of the home?

From answering these two key starting questions, you can start to narrow in on the best style for your home.

Choose Your Exterior Doors Today

If you’re looking to replace or update your patio door, contact Woodhaven Lumber & Millwork to discuss your project and learn more about our door installation services. We have hinged patio doors and sliding patio doors, as well as other custom exterior and interior door solutions. Let us help you choose the best brand, style, material type and glass option for your needs.

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