All About Patio Door Replacement

Patio doors are one of the most important, yet understated, features of any home. If you are looking for ways to improve access to your backyard or balcony or if you want to allow for more natural light within your home, patio door replacement maybe the answer you’re looking for. They can open up a closed space and create beautiful views that help you feel more connected to nature.

Since patio doors play so many different roles within the home, their condition can be critical to any home’s overall performance. Considering today’s patio doors are more secure, more weather-resistant, and have more energy efficiency than ever, it’s important to have the info you need for your next patio door replacement and door replacement project!

Like other utilities, we recommend checking up on your patio doors every few months and assessing them for damage. Occasionally, you may even need to replace them.

With so many choices when it comes to patio door styles and materials, we made this guide to help you make the right decision for your home.

When to replace?

While the need for a patio door replacement may not always be obvious, if ignored, it can be seriously detrimental to the overall performance of a home.

There are a number of ways to judge when it is time to replace a patio door. So, if you notice any of the warning signs below, it may be time to shop for a door replacement.

1.  They are difficult to operate

Trouble opening or closing a patio door is one of the most obvious signals that it may be time for a replacement. If you’re experiencing such trouble, especially with a sliding patio door, it’s possible that the door has become misaligned from the track.

Not only is this problem tedious for homeowners, but it’s a major safety hazard in case of a fire or other emergency. So be sure to look into a solution.

2.  They are not energy efficient

Historically, patio doors were notorious for air leakage. Though recent changes in manufacturing have led to vast improvements, you should still be aware and constantly assess doors for drafts.

If the areas surrounding your patio doors feel cooler than the rest of your house, it’s possible that your doors have drafts. Not only are these uncomfortable for members of the household, but fixing these can be expensive, wasting costly energy while spiking up cooling and heating bills year-round.

According to, windows contribute to about 30% of a typical home’s heating losses. So regardless of their age, you can improve your home’s comfort and lower your energy bills by sealing air leaks or repairing your windows.

3.  They look damaged

Even high quality patio doors will naturally deteriorate over time, since they’re constantly being exposed to various elements – from frigid temperatures to powerful, UV rays. In the most extreme cases, you may even notice gaps developing between the door and its frame.

If you notice gaps, rot, mold or other signs of warping, it’s time to consider replacement.

4.  You are preparing to sell

Another common reason to replace patio doors is to boost the overall look of your home. Whether you are simply remodeling pleasure or are looking to sell your home in the near future, a new sliding glass door or a pair of French doors can add significant curb appeal to your home.

What to consider when shopping for patio doors?

Once you determine whether or not your home is ready for new patio doors, there are additional factors to consider.

There are two primary types of replacement patio doors: French doors and sliding patio doors. So, when you set out to select replacement patio doors for your home, the main question you will have to answer is which of these types is right for you.

Here, we walk you through the definitive traits of each door styles to help you make an appropriate decision.

     French Doors

French patio doors (also known as hinged doors) are, as the nickname suggests, attached by hinges and able to swing in or out. These doors typically consist of one or more glass door panels and are best known for their classic, elegant sightlines

French doors are ideal in areas prone to high winds, since the harder the wind blows against them, the tighter the seal they make when pressed against the jamb.

     Sliding Patio Doors

On the other hand, sliding patio doors (also known as gliding doors or sliding glass doors) require less space and offer straight, simple lines that offer a more contemporary look.

These doors maximize natural light and outdoor views to create a deeper connection to nature. They also facilitate greater ventilation through the room, since they do not require extra space for the door to swing in or out.

Which replacement patio doors are right for me?

Of course, there is no definitive answer as to which style is best: The right replacement patio door for any home depends on the space available and the amount of ventilation desired.

So now that you know the differences between French doors and sliding glass patio doors, try to identify your priorities.

Think about the climate you live in year-round, your budget and your long-term goals. Only then can you make the most appropriate decision!

At Big L, we proudly stock a full selection of replacement patio doors in a variety of shapes, styles and materials. Ready to get started? We are here to help!

Bay Windows Vs Bow Windows

Bay windows vs bow windows, which are better? There are many reasons to consider upgrading your home to include a new set of projection windows or replacement bay windows. Perhaps you are looking to expand your view or let in extra sunlight. Maybe you are simply looking to increase your room’s living space.

Regardless of your reasoning, projection windows — such as bow windows or bay windows — can be an elegant addition to any home. Not only do they help connect you to nature by blending indoor and outdoor spaces, but they also brighten your home with natural light and boost its overall curb appeal.

When shopping for projection windows or replacement bay windows, there are a number of different styles to consider. So, if you’re just beginning to research your options, you will probably have some questions.

For starters, the two most popular styles of projection windows are bow windows and bay windows. Naturally, the two share a few similarities (such as protruding from the wall to open up space). However, understanding the difference between them will help you make a more informed decision.

So, keep reading to learn the differences between bay windows vs bow windows!

Bay Windows

A bay window is a combination of three or more panels set at angles, so the centerpiece is always the widest. Usually, this centerpiece is a picture window, so it’s stationary and only exists to offer an elegant view.

Bay windows also include casement or double hung windows on their sides. Unlike picture windows, double hung windows include two operating sashes that can slide up and down. This allows bay windows to open, providing ventilation and airflow to the home.

Unlike other projection styles, replacement bay windows can be fully operational. This in mind, they are a great choice for those looking for projection windows that can maximize airflow and ventilation.

Bow Windows

On the other hand, bow windows are wider and more intricate. Usually made up of four to six panels set side by side, they curve to create a rounded appearance from the outside.

Like bay windows, bow windows also protrude from the home to open up living space. However, they are usually wider and more angled, making this protrusion less steep. You should still be able to design an elegant nook and relax by the window. But if you’re looking to maximize space at the window, replacement bow windows are not the best choice.

On the bright side (literally), the wider panels featured in bow windows open up more space for natural light. This leads to a broader view and a deeper connection to nature, but also lessens the possibilities for increased living space within the home.

Finally, unlike bay windows, most bow windows are not operational. This means they cannot be opened or closed to allow fresh air into the home. This in mind, bow windows are not a great choice for those looking to open their windows or increase ventilation.


So, what is the final verdict? Bay windows vs bow windows, which is better? Who is the winner?

Truthfully, the right projection window for any home depends on its homeowners’ priorities. Though replacement bay windows and replacement bow windows share a few similarities (such as protruding from the wall and opening up space within your home), they can also deliver distinctly different perks to your home. 

Bay windows are a great choice for those looking to open their windows and increase airflow in the home. On the other hand, bow windows are a solid choice for those looking to maximize their windows’ expansive view.

It is important to understand these differences before making a decision. To help simplify these features, we’ve included a brief summary below.

Bay Windows:

  • 3 panels
  • Angled curve
  • Can be operational
  • More protruded than Bow Windows

Bow Windows:

  • 4-6 panels
  • Rounded curve
  • Non-operational
  • Wide, expansive view
  • Less protruded than Bay Windows

Buyers Want Worthy Windows

Homebuyers know what they want… And they’ll wait for it.

Since buying a home is a long-term commitment, new-home buyers do not want to compromise on their future property. Instead, they’ll hold out until a dream home presents itself.

According to a recent study by John Burns Real Estate Consulting, the most common obstacle faced by shoppers is an inability to find what they’re looking for. Of more than 21,000 potential homebuyers questioned, 46% said they were unable to find a home that meets their desires. In almost all cases, this leads to delays in their settling down.

But what exactly do those dream homes entail? Apparently, it may have something to do with windows.

The same study also asked participants to rank the most important home features affecting their decisions. Surprisingly enough, price of the home was not the primary deal-breaker.

In fact, more than half the future homebuyers consider the design of the home to be more persuasive than its price-point. Energy savings and functionality also ranked among their top concerns.

But are these features realistic?

We think so.

Read below to see how a worthy window can address homebuyers’ deepest desires.

Design of the Home

       Since windows are such a major component of your home’s overall look and feel, they can make a world of difference when it comes to design. The right style window will complement any home exterior and effortlessly increase its curb appeal.

Energy Savings

       Approximately one-third of all heat that escapes from a home travels through windows and doors, according to the NRDC. This can have dire consequences on your heating bill, effectively wasting heat produced by your furnace (and the cool air generated by air conditioners in the summer). Upgrading to a modern, more energy efficient window is an obvious solution. If properly installed, new windows can reduce energy bills by 10% to 25%.


     Windows serve a variety of important roles within the home: They let in natural light, incubate heat or cool air, defend against trespassers, and open up ordinary rooms to the world. So when it comes to the overall functionality of a home, an easy-to-operate window can be a make-or-break element.