Patio Door Installation and Repair

by Marcus Pickett

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Purchasing and installing a patio door is an important decision as it affects the appearance of the patio itself and the interior room where the door leads to. You have many options to choose from: Wood, vinyl, fiberglass, or metal. Height, width, number of doors. Traditional or French-style doors. These options have multiplied as patio doors have garnered more and more attention from home builders, home owners, and home improvement contractors alike. They've become more energy-efficient and more decorative. Whether you're looking to install a new patio door or replacing or repairing an old one, here's a few things to consider.

Sliding vs. Hinged
The two main types of patio doors are sliding and hinged doors. Sliding doors tend to be more popular, as they don't use any additional space by needing to swing open. In addition, you can leave a sliding door cracked open and then push it open with your foot, a real benefit when you're serving dinner on your patio. Problems, however, can occur on the tracks they slide on, causing mild inconvenience or, in same cases, repair work.

Hinged patio doors look and operate more like traditional doors. If your patio is large enough to not need the extra space, you might consider installing a hinged door. (These doors can swing either in or out.) Hinged patio doors also tend to be cheaper, but not significantly cheaper, choices in size and materials will have a greater effect on the total cost of your patio door installation.

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Patio Door Repair

Installation and Cost
Patio doors can be bought for DIY, but when comparing pricing make sure the door manufacturer is including all the relevant pricing for accessories, taxes, and delivery. If you order a patio door from a manufacturer, you may need to order the screen door and other hardware separately. These accessories will not only affect price but may also complicate installation. Another reason to consider hiring a professional installer is the age, condition, and material of the surrounding wall may cause the casual DIY problems that will result in hiring a professional installer in the end, anyway.

Patio Door Repair
Patio door repair is common, especially for sliding patio doors. If your door is having trouble sliding open or closed, first put your head down on the ground and see if the wheels have come off the track. You may be able to simply refit the door on the track. After several years pass, however, it's also not uncommon for steel wheels to wear down an aluminum track. Newer patio doors have double contact points that better distribute the door's weight and minimizes this wear, but your door may have only a single contact point. A new stainless steel cap should work for this patio door repair. If you don't know how to do this, a handyman can easily fix this problem. If this isn't the problem, it's probably time to call a service professional.

Marcus Pickett is a professional freelance writer for the home remodeling industry. He has published more than 600 articles on both regional and national topics within the home improvement industry.