Jun

05

Tips for Selecting Patio Doors

“Sliding, swinging, French, and bi-fold patio doors are just a few selections available today, allowing you to create a truly custom design that complements your home’s architectural style and helps define your outdoor living space,” said Christopher Wittmann, CR, exterior product specialist with Callen Construction in Muskego. “There is an array of new options for homeowners to choose from, such as low-maintenance fiberglass that mimics the look of wood, architectural inspired-styles, decorative glass, custom colors and designs and energy efficient systems,” he added. Ultimately, the type of patio door you choose should depend on your home’s design, your lifestyle, and convenience. The following is a list of five design tips to help you choose the right patio door for your home.

Tips for Selecting Patio Doors“First, you will want to consider furniture and wall placement before determining which opening method works best for the space,” Christopher said. For instance, swinging and French doors need room to open. Conversely, if space is tight, consider using a stationary panel with a single swinging door or sliding doors that will fit well in any sized space.

Next, choose a design that has a wide doorway to provide greater access and stronger connection to your outdoor living space. Look for folding patio door systems to integrate multiple French and swing doors into your design.

Third, you’ll want to select the right type of glass with the most benefits and efficiency, since glass is a major component of patio doors. “Low-E glass helps lower energy bills all year and protect against UV fading,” he said. In addition, decorative tempered glass provides privacy and added style, all while letting in natural light. Options like internal blinds and grills allow you to control the light and views.

Afterwards, choose a durable material with low maintenance, especially if you plan on using your patio door as a main entrance to your home. Fiberglass, vinyl, aluminum, and clad-wood patio doors weather well and never need painting.

Finally, be sure the quality and style of your patio door complements your home. Just like your home’s exterior siding, the material of your patio door is equally important to your home’s overall look. “For instance, if your home is cedar, you’ll want to use a solid wood or high-end fiberglass patio door rather than a vinyl siding door,” Christopher said. French siding doors offer the most design flexibility, because you can hand select the door style, accessories and glass. If you want your patio door to match the architectural style and feel of your front entry and garage doors, then you’ll want a hinged or French door, rather than a sliding patio door, which is mostly comprised of glass.

 

Sep

21

Pick the Perfect Patio Door

Callen Blog - Pick the Perfect Patio Door 092115The perfect patio door can be an asset to your home. However, choosing a patio door that complements your home’s architectural design and helps to define your outdoor living space isn’t always the easiest decision. Today, there are a selection of sliding, swinging, French, and bi-fold patio doors available. When choosing a new patio door, you should first consider your home’s design, your lifestyle, and convenience.

Contemporary sliding patio doors have narrow stiles (vertical sash members) and narrow rails (horizontal sash members). With large glass areas, the doors present a clean, sleek look and allow for natural light to enter the house.

French sliding patio doors have a more classic design with taller top and bottom rails and wider stiles. This is not to be confused with a swinging French door, which features one or both panels opening from the center.

Bi-fold patio doors are perfect when there is more space surrounding the doors. The doors open more widely and fold smoothly to one side.

There are also options in choosing screens. Most manufacturers have bottom-hung screens in which the bottom track carries all the weight from the wheels. This option requires cleaning and maintenance because the wheel may pop off if dirt or stones get stuck in the track. Top hung screens resemble bi-fold doors in a closet. Since the weight is at the top, you don’t have to worry about it popping the track.

Screens also can come in Standard or Hi-Transparency – a screen with a finer mesh that is more tightly weaved, which gives you a clearer, brighter view.

Other options for your sliding patio door include multiple grid styles and patterns, including between the glass grids or simulated divided lite. Hardware colors come in an array of finishes.

Another thing to keep in mind when replacing your door as a Wisconsin homeowner is the difference in door size for Wisconsin patio doors. Wisconsin has a unique size of patio door that was commonly installed beginning in the 1970s called a Wisconsin-style door.

A Wisconsin sliding patio door comes in either a 6 ft., 3-in. width or a 6 ft., 6-in.” width, compared to a standard size sliding patio door, which are 5-, 6-, 8-’, 9-, and 12 ft. widths. Replacement of a Wisconsin-sized sliding patio door can be accomplished two ways: a custom-size door can be ordered in all materials, or a standard-size patio door can be installed with wider trim on both the inside and outside of the home.

Callen can help you select the style of patio door that will work best for your home. Call Callen at 414-765-2585 to schedule a no-obligation consultation.

Feb

10

Commonly Asked Questions About Window Replacement

Window FAQ Blog Feb 10 PhotoBy Mike Demet

At almost every visit to a customer’s home that I make, I find there are several questions that are always asked. I thought it would be informative to share with you.

What is your turnaround time on installation?

Turnaround time can be anywhere from 4 to 12 weeks depending on customer needs and staff availability. We use only Callen employees who are certified carpenters to install windows and patio doors. We do not hire subcontractors for this work, therefore, our installation schedule varies depending on staff availability.

It’s important for the homeowner to know we never cut corners on installations to hurry things up. We will accommodate an emergency situation, but the critical thing is that the job be done right – at or above manufacturer specifications and as close to the customer’s time frame expectations as possible.

Can I do one window at a time?

This is a question I get on almost every consultation. The answer is yes. The critical thing is to pick the right contractor and right window material for your house. We can always do things over a period of months or years to accommodate your budget. We also have several financing options including one-year interest free. Some customers find that option can help them do multiple windows at once.

We can advise homeowners on where the most critical needs are. When called to a house for window replacement, we do a thorough inspection of all windows and patio doors and take high quality digital photographs and assess whether there is any rot or damage, water infiltration, and discoloration that implies moisture getting in.

Can you work in any weather?

Almost. We do work year-round even if it’s raining or snowing. But a raging blizzard, or wind chills that we have had lately make it very difficult to do an installation. No matter the weather, our installers take care to protect the interior and exterior of the house and minimize the elements getting in.

How long will an installation take?

Patio doors typically take a half-day to three-quarters of a day to install. Our installers on average can install four to five windows a day.

Of course, these aren’t the only questions I am asked, and I also have questions for customers on what they want to achieve in window replacement. There are many options in replacement windows and we’ll discuss those in another blog post.

Jun

10

Patio Door Replacement Offers Many Choices

by Tim Liegler, CR

There’s nothing like a sliding patio door to bring the outside in with plenty of natural light and fresh air.  If you have a patio door, that is in good condition of course, it’s an asset to your home.

When it’s time to replace your patio door, the options are many.  A lot goes into choosing patio doors, from style and material to how the door opens, how the screens are hung, glass options, and more.

Let’s start with style options, of which there are two – Contemporary or French.

A Contemporary sliding patio door means the door has narrow stiles (vertical sash members) and narrow rails (horizontal sash members), and a large glass area.  It’s a very clean, sleek look. 

A French sliding patio door has a more classic design with taller top and bottom rails and wider stiles.  This is not to be confused with a Swinging French door, where one or both panels open from the center.   

When choosing a sliding patio door, you can choose from the following materials:

  • Vinyl
  • Aluminum clad wood
  • Fiberglass

There are also options in choosing screens: Most manufacturers have bottom-hung screens where all the weight is on the wheels on the bottom track.  If you get dirt or a stone on the track, the wheel may pop off and the screen won’t function.  A bottom track screen requires track maintenance to keep it clean and also lubricated.  Top hung screens are like a bifold door in a closet.  All the weight is up at the top so you don’t have to worry about it popping the track.  Currently, Marvin Windows and Doors is the only manufacturer to have a top-hung screen.

Screens also can come in Standard or Hi-Transparency – a screen with a finer mesh that is more tightly weaved, which gives you a clearer, brighter view.

Other options for your sliding patio door include multiple grid styles and patterns, including between the glass grids or simulated divided lite.  Hardware colors come in many beautiful finishes.

Another thing that surprises many homeowners when they are replacing a patio door is Wisconsin sizing.  We have a unique size of patio door that was commonly installed beginning in the 1970’s called a Wisconsin-style door.  From customers who have moved here from other parts of the country, they say they never heard of that before.  We run into it quite a bit, since a number of these doors are now in need of replacement.

A Wisconsin sliding patio door comes in either a 6’3” or 6’6” width, compared to a standard size sliding patio door, which is 5’, 6’, 8’, 9’, and 12’ width.   Replacement of a Wisconsin sized sliding patio door can be accomplished two ways, a custom size door can be ordered in all materials or a standard size patio door can be installed with wider trim on both the inside and outside of the home.