What Is A French Door?

French DoorsA French door is not simply a door with windows extending along the whole frame; this type of door is a fantastic way to add style and privacy without sacrificing your view. This type of door, which is also referred to as a “French window,” is a door designed with panes or panels of glass. Each pane is separated with wooden frames or partitions. The glass panes are normally shaped rectangularly and take up most of the surface of the door.

This door is more of a style fixture in a home; however, it has a number of practical functions as well, according to the San Francisco Gate. For instance, they are used as a means to allow additional natural light into a home, or as a way to break-up a room and give each area a distinctive atmosphere while keeping an open feel to the general area.

However, today a French door can indicate any door that is made mostly of glass. French doors are usually installed in hinged-pairs that open in the middle to create a broad doorway minus a middle post; however, a French door can be one or three doors too. Traditional French doors open into a room, but there are models on the market that are space savers that swing out.

Why are they called French Doors?

The genesis of French doors can be traced as far back as the 16th century when France was warring with Italy. Following France’s triumph over the Italians, they carried with them a few Renaissance artworks along with Renaissance architectural concepts. Because the Renaissance style was mainly designed around proportion and symmetry, with emphasis placed on light, the French integrated this type of pattern on their doors.

The French discovered that a window designed like a door with glass panes extending for most of the door’s length, offered an ideal sense of proportion and light. French doors were viewed as the answer to dimly lit homes as electricity was yet to be discovered. Doors and windows made in this type of design allow light that is more natural and provide a sophistication and exquisiteness that enhance the aesthetics of any home.

French Door Structure

The adorned structural components between the windowpanes of French doors are known as “mullions.” Conventional French doors use individual panes of glass. Today, exterior French doors use double or triple pane glass for better energy efficiency. Installation usually takes a couple of days; however, this will depend upon whether a French or sliding door is already in place or if a new opening needs to be constructed.

Related Resource: How To Install French Doors

French doors can be an elegant addition to any home whether your décor is rustic, conventional, or contemporary. These doors have a knack of bringing two spaces together. For example, a pair of French doors opening onto a patio from a kitchen eloquently brings the outdoors inside. In fact, property experts agree that these doors can be a good investment. In most instances, adding such a door will boost the potential sale value of your home. A French door can transform a banal room into one that is intriguing and eye-catching, which will add up to better offers if you ever decide to sell your home.