French Doors vs Sliding Glass Doors: Which is best? | Pros & Cons

Patio doors can add character to your home, depending on your style and budget. There are various types to choose from, but two are the most common: French doors and sliding glass doors. While both patio doors provide functionality and a unique flair, they also have distinct differences to consider before deciding. In this blog post, we’ll dive into the pros and cons of French doors vs sliding glass doors so you can decide which door is the most suitable for your home. 

French doors vs Sliding Glass Doors

French doors are also referred to as hinged doors or swinging doors. They look more classic and traditional in comparison to a sliding glass door, which looks more contemporary. French doors function by opening them from the middle door knobs or handles fixed to the doorway’s frame. French doors can improve a space’s overall look through their elegance and sophistication, as they are frequently a popular choice in renovations. 

Sliding glass doors are more attuned to their name as you slide them open from one side to another. They are also referred to as gliding glass doors. These doors are commonly used in hotels to open up to a balcony, as adding one to your home can add an upscale feel. Sliding glass doors’ huge glass panels let in lots of natural light, giving the room a feeling of openness and connection to the outside.

Sliding Mirror Door in Spa Change Room
Sliding Mirror Door in Spa Change Room

The Pros and Cons of Sliding Glass Doors and French Doors

​​Choosing between Sliding glass vs French doors depends on factors such as your budget, personal design preferences, and ease of use. It’s not uncommon for the sliding glass door vs French doors price to be a dealbreaker. However, here is a rundown of what you need to know before purchasing.

Pros and Cons of Sliding Glass Doors

Pros of Sliding Glass DoorsCons of Sliding Glass Doors
Space-saving: Sliding glass doors slide horizontally, saving space compared to swinging glass doors.
Versatility: They are versatile in terms of sizes and configurations, accommodating a variety of design and functional preferences.
More natural light: A lot of natural light enters the room due to their expansive views of the outdoors and large windows.
Ease of use: The sliding glass doors are easy to open and close because they are mounted on tracks.
Energy efficient: A sliding glass door can be extremely energy efficient due to glass technology and insulation advancements. They are typically equipped with low-emissivity coatings, double-paned glass, and weatherstripping that enhance thermal insulation. 
Less ventilation: A sliding glass door has only one movable panel, limiting the extent of airflow and ventilation.
Restricted access: There may be difficulty moving or storing large furniture or objects through sliding doors due to the fixed panel.
Maintenance: The sliding door tracks may require cleaning or maintenance over time to ensure smooth functionality.
Less privacy: A sliding glass door with large windows provides less privacy than a French door. Outsiders may be able to see into your home through the expansive glass panels, which may require curtains or window coverings.

Pros and Cons of French Doors

Pros of French DoorsCons of French Doors
Elegant space: Adding French doors to a room can help transform it into a stylish and elegant space that will make any room feel more inviting.
Better ventilation: French doors have two hinged panels that swing open, providing a wider opening that allows for better ventilation and airflow.
Easy access: Having French doors with expansive openings makes moving large objects or furniture into and out of the room easier.
Versatile: Various styles, materials, and finishes are available for French doors, allowing them to be customized to suit any architectural style.
Enhanced security: A French door provides enhanced security because of its robust locking system and sturdy construction. The hardwood can secure your patio door from intruders and protect your pets from getting out.
More space required: To swing open French doors, more space is required both inside and outside the room.
Less visibility: A mullion (a divider between glass panels) in French doors may interfere with the view of the outside since they can obstruct the view from the inside.
More expensive: French doors tend to cost more because of their materials and craftsmanship than sliding glass doors.
Risk of damage: French doors generally have larger glass panels than sliding glass doors. The increased glass surface area makes them more susceptible to breakage due to extreme weather or natural stressors over time.

Do French or Sliding Patio Doors Cost More?

The cost of sliding glass doors vs French doors can be a dealbreaker. Since French doors involve more materials, it may involve a longer installation process, leading to a higher cost. French doors involve mounting two door panels on the sides of a metal or wooden frame, whereas a sliding glass door only involves attaching one sliding glass panel to a frame. 

As French doors have more customization options than sliding glass doors, the types of material, finishes, and decor can add up to the cost. Regarding market demand, French doors cost more because the perceived aesthetics and style increase their value. For example, even if French doors look more traditional, you can buy finishes that make the room look modern and contemporary, with minimalistic aesthetics like white paint with upscale door handles and windows. 

Lastly, the energy efficiency of French doors vs. sliding glass doors can affect the cost. 

Multiple glass panels are a common characteristic of French doors, which can increase the possibility of heat transfer. However, high-quality French doors could have insulated glass and quality weatherstripping systems to combat this, raising its cost and energy efficiency. On the other hand, sliding glass doors feature a more extensive single-glass panel, creating energy-efficient designs at a lower price.

Call Glass Ninja Today For all Your Glass Door Needs

Glass Ninja is your choice for any glass project with glass door needs. Our expert team of project managers and installers is ready to help you with your next glass or mirror project, whether glass sliding patio doors or French door windows. We’re here for you.

Call us today at 1-833-344-5277 to find out how we can help you with any glass needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are French doors safer than sliding glass?

Both French and sliding glass doors can be secure if installed correctly with the proper locks and reinforced glass. However, French doors, which frequently feature many locking points along the vertical frame, can offer better security.

What are the disadvantages of sliding doors?

Sliding doors have fewer ventilation options than French doors. For example, the sliding track may deteriorate over time, and if the door is not maintained correctly, it may come off the track.

Are sliding doors cheaper than double doors?

Sliding doors can be more expensive than double doors, depending on the materials, the design, and the quality. In comparison to double doors, sliding doors are typically more affordable.

What is better, sliding or doors?

Sliding doors and typical hinged doors are both viable options, but the decision ultimately comes down to space constraints, aesthetic preferences, functionality, and convenience. Sliding glass doors are easier to use, but hinged doors can have a more elegant aesthetic.

Are French doors more expensive than sliding?

French doors typically cost more than sliding doors because of things like the complexity of the design, the materials used, and the installation requirements.

Which are better French doors or sliding doors?

French doors or sliding doors are chosen according to personal preferences, requirements, and aesthetics. Sliding doors save room and offer unhindered views, whereas French doors have a more traditional and elegant appearance and greater ventilation.

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