Is it time to restore my French doors?
French doors are a stylish and efficient choice for your home. But like any fixture, the effects of harsh weather over time can take its toll on them. With several glass panes and many pieces of timber making up the doors, there are a number of small problems that can occur including wood decay, paint wear and draughts.
Far too often, doors with these small problems are hastily replaced or left untreated, which can allow them to develop into something more serious. At Fortis & Hooke, we aim to solve these problems without costly replacements. Our experts have created simple, effective solutions to these small issues, which will stop them developing and ensure your doors have a long-lasting strength.
Is there a solution for wood decay on my French doors?
Wood decay occurs on French doors when the timber becomes exposed to the elements. Flaking paint, cracks or broken seals allow the wood to be distressed, changing its structure. Affected by the weather, wood expands and contracts, leading to pores opening up inside the wood. When moisture gets into these pores, the decay begins to emerge and progress.
If left untreated, decay will turn to more serious rot. It can spread through the timber and eventually lead to your door being completely non-functioning. There’s no doubt decay can be concerning and unsightly, but it doesn’t mean a replacement is necessary.
Some surveyors suggest a full replacement at the first sign of decay. But with several timber panels making up the doors, the problem can be isolated and treated. If the decay has occurred at the bottom of your doors, for instance, the problem area can be removed and replaced with a new hardwood section.
After replacing the decaying wood, it’s important to deal with the initial problem. It’s likely the decay was caused by water ingress from paint wear or a badly sealed window pane. A thorough and efficient restoration will tackle any underlying issues to ensure the decay doesn’t recur.
Would a fresh coat of paint help my French doors?
A common issue with French doors is paint wear. If the paint is left to flake off, the timber can become exposed and more susceptible to decay and even rot. But if you don’t ignore it, flaking paint is a small problem and can be easily fixed by a professional.
Some guides recommend DIY painting as a sensible option, but with this advice come several potential problems. With wooden glazing bars holding the many glass panels in place, a common issue is glass damage. On top of this, failure to properly remove excess paint can be detrimental to the effect of the new coat. A professional paint service is required to fully protect the wooden frame from the effects of weather.
What does a draught mean?
Feeling a cold draught coming in is a tell-tale sign that French doors are in need of restoration. Numerous homeowners complain of their doors letting in air, without realising that there is a clear solution. So much so that French doors have gained an inaccurate reputation for being draughty. You don’t have to put up with it.
A big part of a full restoration is ensuring your French doors are fit for purpose. This means draught-proofing them properly to ensure they aren’t letting air in. One of the major selling points of French doors is the great ventilation you get from their wide opening. And with draught-proofing added, you will benefit from doors than keep out the cold in winter, as well as letting in plenty of air in the summer.
Lock and hinge issues
Amongst the problems that develop over time are those with locks and hinges. But don’t worry. They are also amongst the solutions provided by a restoration. Locking mechanisms can be broken by obstructions as well as general wear and tear. The best way to determine the cause of the problem is by getting the doors examined by a professional surveyor.
Similarly, with faulty hinges, there isn’t one definite cause. It may be an issue of rust, obstruction or even wood decay around the hinge. An experienced surveyor can determine the problem and offer you a simple solution without the need for costly replacement.
Restoration vs. replacement – which should I choose?
To the untrained eye, any problem can seem major. It is understandable that a lot of homeowners think their French doors require replacing. What is less understandable is the companies who needlessly advise it. In the vast majority cases, a thorough restoration can get your home’s doors back to their superb best.
Isolating and dealing with specific problems has some benefits too. The cost is minimised, which is a big plus for any homeowner. But also you get to keep your original French doors. This means no mismatching of styles in your home, no unauthentic uPVC replacement, and no need for permission in listed properties. Listed properties have all their structural features protected. You would have to apply for permission to replace windows and doors. Restoration removes this hurdle, making the process much smoother.
How can Fortis & Hooke help?
At Fortis & Hooke, we’re passionate about retaining the heritage, style and strength of original French doors. To achieve this, we offer a full restoration service that includes repair, repainting, replacing broken parts and draught-proofing. With a full restoration from Fortis & Hooke, you can be sure your French doors will be fully functional, look their best and most importantly stand the test of time.
Why should I opt for Fortis & Hooke?
We’re not your ordinary restoration company. Fortis & Hooke are specialists in wooden window and door restoration. Our team of expert carpenters and glazers use a mixture of traditional knowledge and modern methods to make sure all restorations are completed to the highest standards.
And with Fortis & Hooke, there is no need to worry about mess and noise in your home. We remove doors and windows from your property for restoration. This means, firstly, there are no workers in your house – no disturbance to your daily life and no need to book time off work or stay at home.
But also, by taking your French doors away, we’re able to complete the restoration in a workshop environment. Without the interference of weather, we can ensure the job is completed swiftly and to the highest standard. It also means your doors won’t be exposed to these weather conditions before they are fully protected.
How much does French door restoration cost?
Because of the variety in size, age, style, and condition of French doors, there is no “one size fits all” quotation price. Our expert surveyors will thoroughly examine your doors to determine the problems, the solutions and subsequently a quote for your specific case.
This isn’t a vague “price-only” quote, though. Our surveyors will provide you with a detailed quotation that outlines the exact course of action required. No more misleading advice. You can make an informed decision, with no obligation or pre-existing costs. And you can be sure of one thing – it won’t cost as much as a replacement.