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French Doors vs Patio Doors - What's the Difference Between These Doors

French Doors vs Patio Doors - What's the Difference Between These Doors

The main difference between a French door and a Patio door is the way each door opens. French doors are double doors that open outwards on a hinge, whereas sliding patio doors open sideways, sliding along a track.

Among the two doors, the Patio doors are well suited for contemporary and modern homes because of their fresh and chic appearance, while the French doors are known to provide a classic and vintage look to your home.

Both French doors and Patio doors are somewhat similar in look due to their wide glazed door feature and the natural light they bring into your home. Therefore it is necessary to understand the difference between the two doors in order to avoid confusion. Let us take a look at their key points of difference.

Difference Between French Doors And Patio Doors

  • Material

French Doors:
French doors are a set of double glass doors usually made up of wood, uPVC, or aluminium frame. French doors are made up of glass, with varying door frames. Aluminium French doors are quite popular because of their sturdiness and quality.
Patio Doors:
Patio doors or sliding glass doors are made up of wood, uPVC, aluminium, or steel frame. Patio doors are also made up of glass with varying door frames and tracks. uPVC doors are much more popular when compared to the rest of the Patio door materials.
  • Design

French Doors:
French doors are designed to open outwards or inwards, depending upon your preference. These doors provide you full access along with an unobstructed view. The large panels in the French doors are known to give an illusion of larger space and additional ventilation in the house.
Patio Doors:
Patio doors open sideways, sliding in a horizontal manner. Depending on your preference, these doors slide left or rightwards on their door tracks. The major drawback of a Patio door is that only 50% opening space is accessible to use as neither of the doors always stays put.
  • Security

French Doors:
French doors are made up of glass, making them vulnerable to theft. These doors can be locked with a three-point locking system or multipoint locks for enhanced security. French doors are more effective in terms of security when compared to Patio doors because of their dependable locking system.
Patio Doors:
Patio doors are vulnerable to theft, as they are made up of glass too. These doors are usually found with mortise security locks which are strong in nature but easily prone to breakage. Therefore, Patio doors do not tend to offer a solid locking system.
  • Performance

French Doors:
The French door’s performance or energy efficiency level is measured by its “U-Value”. The lower the U-Value, the more energy-efficient the door is. If the glass on the French doors is of high quality, it provides increased thermal efficiency. Opt for a uPVC door frame for enhanced performance.
Patio Doors:
The modern energy-efficient Patio glass doors are good at keeping the heat where it is supposed to be. Go for double-paned glass or triple-paned glass if you happen to reside in areas with extreme temperature fluctuations. The performance of a Patio door also depends upon its door frame. uPVC door frames are known to increase the performance of Patio doors.
  • Price

French Doors:
French doors are a bit pricey when compared to Patio doors. These doors range from £300 to £2500. Though French doors are costly, they are still famous for uplifting the aesthetics of your home.
Patio Doors:
Patio doors are cheaper when compared to French doors. Patio doors cost around £400 to £1500. However, when the size of a Patio door increases above 180mm, it can exceed the price range of French doors. These doors are economically beneficial to consider from the budget viewpoint.


Selecting a French door or a Patio door is your personal choice. It would be best if you considered various factors such as usage, security, design, budget, the interior of your home, etc., before choosing from either of the two gorgeous doors.

If you happen to have little space and are looking for a cost-effective option, then a Patio door would be perfect for your home. However, if you have ample space and prefer a more traditional and elegant look, French doors would be a better option.

Patio Doors vs French Doors: FAQs

  • Do French doors increase home value?

French doors are known to increase the home value. These doors are often viewed as one of the best home improvements that could help gain high ROI in case you wish to sell your home in the future. Consider upgrading your old doors to French doors if you are looking to increase the resale value of your home.

  • Are French doors easy to break into?

A French door can be easier to break in when they are poorly installed. It is advisable that you get your French door fitted and installed by a professional, as it is a matter of security here. Many homeowners who are not aware can commit mistakes, leaving the French door vulnerable to theft.

  • How do you burglar proof a patio door?

To burglar proof a Patio door, you will need to:
  • Invest in a good quality door lock
  • Fix a security bar in the door track
  • Install door sensors or alarm systems
  • Add shatterproof window film to the glass
  • Regularly inspect and maintain the Patio door track



    Shabana Kauser is the dynamic owner of Emerald Doors, the famous door-selling company in the UK with immense knowledge and experience in working with architecture, interior design, and home decor. She continues to share tips and technical know-how of balancing interior elements, door fittings, room aesthetics, and the like. Personally, she loves coffee, always dabbling with several blends.

    Author: Shabana kauser

    Shabana Kauser, the Director of Emerald Doors, brings over 20 years of invaluable expertise in the door industry. Her visionary leadership has steered the company to new heights, offering an extensive range of internal and external doors while prioritizing quality and customer satisfaction. The website's glowing reviews stand as a testament to her commitment to excellence. To learn more about Emerald Doors, connect with us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.