Selecting Windows & Doors for Your Home

planning windows & doors

Adding a window or door can dramatically improve the appeal of a home, from the inside and outside. Windows and doors are architectural elements that can enhance a home and boost its resale value.

Projects in Planning
 

Choosing windows
In addition to improving a home's appearance, windows and doors have a practical function. A window keeps out the elements while providing light. It may also frame an attractive view. If openable, it offers ventilation. A new door can change traffic patterns, easing movement through the house and eliminating bottlenecks. Patio or French doors are windowlike in their ability to frame new vistas. That's why doors and windows are popular do-it-yourself projects: They offer benefits in form and function.

This section introduces you to the types of windows and doors available and the materials from which they are made, and shows how you can make intelligent choices about which are best for you.

Windows offer an extraordinary range of shapes, sizes, and materials, all with energy-efficient glazing. They come in a variety of styles that can open by sliding up, down, or sideways or on hinges at the top, bottom, or side. Various millwork styles are available in such materials as wood, vinyl, and wood clad with aluminum or fiberglass. Even if you are merely replacing windows without changing the size of the rough opening, you'll be able to choose from many types of muntin and grill patterns. If you are installing a window where there was none before, you'll find the options almost overwhelming.

Selecting doors
A beautiful front entry door has long been synonymous with curb appeal; a carefully chosen interior door can do a lot to boost the attractiveness of a room. But beyond offering good looks, doors can be great problem solvers. Bifold, sliding, and pocket doors are real spacesavers; patio and French doors can provide plenty of room for party-level traffic. Like windows, doors are now available in a wide range of materials and in a range of prices.


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