Decorating French Patio Doors With Window Films: A Primer

Posted on: 12 November 2015

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French patio doors can add a lot of light and character to your home, but after a while you may find that you're bored with the look or dissatisfied with the level of privacy the door offers. You may be considering adding curtains or blinds to your door, but a trend that began in the 1960s is becoming a popular option once again. In this article, learn how you can use window films to dress up any French patio door, what types are available and how they can benefit you.

Window Film Options For Your Home

You've probably seen window "clings," a decorative piece of static-vinyl made to decorate windows, in your local grocery store for holidays like Easter and Halloween. Now imagine a "cling" for your patio doors. Whether you want to add some privacy by covering the windows or just want to dress up your French doors, window films fit the bill.

Window films come in many designs, which include the following:

  • Etched glass
  • Stained glass
  • Frosted colors
  • Reflective

Whether you prefer a classic, stained-glass mural or a modern color block look, there is a design for you -- available online or in your local home improvement store. They can be cut and fitted to cover the entire glass portion of the door, or you can choose to highlight the door by adding corner pieces, center pieces or borders.

Adhesive Vs. Adhesive-Free Window Film

There are two types of window film: adhesive and adhesive-free, or static-vinyl. Both types have a paper backing, and both can give your French doors a whole new look, but that is where the similarities end.

Adhesive window film is made from 2-mil thick polyester. The process to apply it requires precision handling, as it is notorious for sticking to itself and any other surface it comes into contact with. The primary benefit of adhesive window film is cost. It is relatively inexpensive for those on a tight budget. It can also be a better option if you just want to add a small piece to highlight your door, or if you don't plan to change the look of the door often.

Adhesive-free window film has become the most popular option. Made of 8-mil thick PVC, it is less likely to crease or wrinkle. While it is more expensive, ease of installation makes it an attractive choice.

Additional benefits of adhesive-free film include:

  • Ability to remove and replace easily
  • Richer and more vibrant colors
  • More resistant to scratches

Benefits of Window Films

Window films are a great way to give your home a fresh look, soften and disperse direct sunlight and give you more privacy, but there are more benefits than meet the eye.

Both adhesive and adhesive-free films block up to 99% of UV rays. They are also energy efficient. Adhesive film provides energy savings by reflecting light away from windows, which can lower cooling costs. Adhesive-free films also reflect light, but can also provide an insulating effect. Because the of the thick vinyl, they have a slow thermal transfer rate, which can keep help to keep warm air inside during cold weather.

French patio doors can make a lovely addition to any home and they can be decorated and highlighted in many ways. Using window films is a great way to express your own style, with a wide variety of designs and looks to choose from. Whether an inexpensive solution is your goal, or ease of handling is the most important consideration, there is an option for you, and both adhesive and adhesive-free window films can protect your family and save you money in the long run.