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All About French Garage Doors



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All About French Garage Doors

If you want to create an elegant style reminiscent of French architecture, you may enjoy having French garage doors. Designed to swing open instead of raise up as traditional garage doors do, French doors are lauded for their chic style and versatility.

French garage doors come in various configurations, materials, and sizes. So, how do you know which combination is best for your home? Discover the key features of these doors to help you make the right decision. In this guide, we’ll explore various design options, along with some pros and cons.

Design Options for French Garage Doors

French garage doors have distinct design elements that attract homeowners who want to create a timeless, classic feel for their home’s exterior.

Below are some popular style options.

Single French Garage Doors

Unlike double garage doors, a single French garage door is designed as one large panel. Depending on your preference, the door can either open outward or inward. It is generally used for smaller garages.

Double French Garage Doors

Double French style garage doors have two panels that swing outward or inward to open. These doors are frequently chosen for larger garage door entrances.

French Garage Door Materials

French style garage doors are commonly made from wood, aluminum, or steel, with each material creating a different aesthetic. For example, while wood can be used for a more rustic look, doors with aluminum framing and clear panels create a contemporary feel. Steel can be styled to look like wood and other materials; it’s also the most affordable and versatile material overall.

Upkeep for each of these materials also differs, as shown below.

Clean using… Prone to… Lubricate… Paint…
Steel A mild soap and water mix Denting with high impacts and rusting All moving parts Every 3-5 years, apply a rust-resistant primer.
Wood A mild soap and water mix Rotting and warping with moisture All moving parts Every 1-2 years to protect against outdoor elements and moisture
Aluminum A mild soap and water mix Glass breakage with high impacts All moving parts Typically does not need to be repainted

Style Accents for French Garage Doors

From the handles to the hinges, every part of your garage door contributes to its aesthetic — this is especially true for French garage doors. Let’s review the subtle style elements contributing to this garage door’s classic look.

  • French garage doors typically have window inserts that cover the top half or the full length of the garage door. These inserts can be customized with tinting or window coverings to give homeowners privacy.
  • Wrought iron handles and hinges contribute to a traditional French aesthetic.
  • Raised panels add texture and depth to this garage door style.
  • Neutral colors or soft pastels are common.

Size Options for French Garage Doors

Sizes for this garage door type are highly customizable. While there is no standard size for a French garage door, many homeowners use it to fit a standard residential single or double-car garage opening. A typical single-car garage opening measures 8’x7’, while a double-car garage opening generally measures 16’x7’.

Pros and Cons of French Garage Doors

Although French garage doors are great for some, they aren’t necessarily a good fit for everyone. Use the pros and cons chart below to help you determine whether a French door suits your needs.

Pros Cons
  • Elegant design that enhances curb appeal
  • Highly customizable
  • Window inserts let in natural light
  • Fits a variety of architectural styles
  • More expensive than traditional garage doors are
  • Swing-out models require additional driveway space
  • Doors with mostly glass panels may require more security measures than solid doors do

When evaluating whether these doors are an ideal option for your home, consider your design preferences, space restrictions, and privacy preferences. Those factors combined with your chosen budget should help solidify your decision.

FAQ About French Garage Doors

What is a French garage door?

A French garage door features elements of architectural design that are popular in France. Much as the front door in your home does, French style doors are made to swing open using hinges.

They typically feature the following:

  • Transparent paneling or window inserts
  • Decorative hinges and/or handles
  • Symmetrical designs
  • A classic aesthetic

How do I convert my garage door to French doors?

Converting typical garage doors to French doors is a significant modification that requires the skilled craftsmanship of a garage door service professional. The process involves removing the existing garage door and installing a framed opening to accommodate the new French doors.

Your garage door professional will install the French doors, ensuring they are properly leveled and secured. They may recommend adding sidelights or transom windows to enhance aesthetic appeal and structural integrity. They’ll finish the project by adding any desired trim or molding to create a cohesive look.

Keep in mind that this conversion may require obtaining necessary permits, so it’s essential to hire professionals to ensure the work meets safety and building code standards.

Expert French Garage Door Installation

French garage doors are a valuable addition to a home — ensure that this addition is installed safely and correctly. For top-notch French garage door installation service, call the experts at Precision Garage Door Service™ or find the Precision pro nearest you.