Picture Windows vs. French Doors

When you have the ability to install a picture window or French doors, you get more than just a pretty picture in your living space. You get additional curb appeal, value and resale power with the addition of one of these great home improvement features. Whether you choose to install a picture window or French door, you can bet there are distinct advantages and disadvantages to each one. Use this guide to picture windows vs. French doors and see for yourself which home addition will work best for your Houston home.

French Doors

There’s nothing more gratifying than letting a cool autumn breeze blow indoors through a pair of well-crafted French doors. With a wide variety of door styles available, you can be sure that these double sided doors open up your home to the outside space just as well if not better than any window can. French doors can have additional fixed glass features such as interior shades, stained glass or odd shaped panels that add to the overall effect of these widely used door styles.

French doors have one distinct disadvantage compared to a fixed picture window: you need a patio, porch, balcony or terrace to use them effectively. That means additional costs and maintenance to the home. While not everyone opts out for a full scale deck, a small staircase can be used for access to the French doors. Unlike typical window opening, French doors have no screens so bugs can easily get into the home unless they open underneath of a screen enclosure, further adding to the cost of a French door installation.

Picture Windows

With the elegance and opulence of a huge picture window, you home becomes open and natural without letting in Mother Nature herself. If you’re considering installing a picture window, it can’t be beat for looks—especially when it overlooks a garden, forest or other great landscaping features you may have on your property. Picture windows can provide a seamless ever-changing portrait of your favorite outdoor landscape, without costing you a fortune in renovation costs. Many picture windows can easily be installed in the existing structure without the high costs of building a deck, patio or stairwell to the home.

Picture windows have a few disadvantages that set them apart from French doors as well. The main problem with a picture window is that is usually doesn’t open. A fixed glass panel provides an unobstructed view of the outside, but it often lacks the capacity to provide fresh air and ventilation into the home. A picture windows can also make a home harder to heat or cool, ensuring your heating and cooling bills rise with the outdoor temperature fluctuations. Many homeowners who have picture windows installed opt out to have window treatments like vertical blinds or roman shades to help keep the temperature stable when outdoor temperatures are at their extremes.

Combining the Two

In most cases, you can easily combine the two materials together. A fixed window header, sidelights or transom all provide a fixed window for light while the French doors open wide to allow for adequate ventilation into the home. Are you looking for the best windows in the Houston area? Look no further than Gulf Coast Windows. Call us right now for the perfect picture windows and French doors for your new home or room addition today.


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Posted by on Sep 21 2012. Filed under Interior Design. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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