French Doors - Ambassador Windows

French Doors or double doors as they are sometimes called are a popular replacement for sliding patio doors, and more and more homes now have French doors leading out into their garden or onto their patio. When they are working properly they are a beautiful addition to any home but most will give trouble at after a few years, some even sooner.

What are the common problems with French Doors?

  • Dropped or misaligned doors
  • Faulty or loose locking systems
  • Worn handles
  • Fogged-up or broken-down double glazing
  • Lost or broken keys
  • Broken hinges

Dropped French Doors.

Unless the glass has been properly installed into the door, the door will drop over time. Eventually the door will rub against the bottom of the frame, it may become difficult to close or to lock and gaps may become visible at the top of the door. The solution is to remove the glass unit and re-fit it back into the door. This is a straight forward task on most PVC French doors but much more difficult if you have aluminium French doors. When glazed correctly a door will not drop again. It is important to resist the urge to adjust the hinges to overcome this problem. This is acceptable if only slight adjustments are necessary but is not the way to tackle a badly dropped and misaligned French door.

Faulty or Loose Locking Systems.

As with any locking system, wear and tear will take a toll. The multipoint locking system in French doors needs to be aligned to minimise the force needed to engage the lock. French doors are commonly misaligned and so the multipoint lock and the handles are the first to suffer as a consequence. The locks may become difficult to engage requiring you to lift the handles several times or with great force in order to secure the door. Ambassador Window Repairs carry multipoint locks from GU, Yale, Mila, DGS, Roto, Lock Master, ASSA and others. Although there is a wide variety of locks and multipoint lock manufacturers, there are a few types that are used more regularly than others. Because of this we can replace many locks in one visit but if not we can have a replacement within hours or days at the most.

Worn Door Handles

As mentioned above, on top of wear and tear, misaligned doors cause extra wear on the door handle. One of the door handles is obviously outside and so is exposed to the weather also. We have an extensive range of door handles in gold, black and white to suit most doors. As with multipoint locks there is such an array of door handles that it is sometimes impossible to have an exact match, but some searching will usually turn up the right one. If you need a replacement door handle simply send us a photo of your existing handle and we will find the replacement that you need.

Fogged-up or broken-down double glazing

If the frames of your French doors are in good condition but the double glazing is fogged-up or broken down then you should consider replacing the glazing with new high performance low-e glass. This will hold in more heat and will cost around one quarter to one third of the price of new doors. All glass fitted into French Doors must be either toughened or laminated safety glass.

Lost Keys

If French doors are not in frequent use it is not uncommon for the keys to the lock to have been misplaced. This is a simple repair and we can call out and replace the locking cylinder, giving you three new keys and the ability to open your door again. If you have lost the keys to your French door and are considering replacing the locking cylinder, it might be a good time to upgrade the to an anti-snap high security cylinder.

Broken Hinges

The hinges on French doors can break for many reasons, not least normal wear and tear. The main cause, however, is wind damage. As French doors open out and are sometimes left open, a strong gust of wind can blow the door wide open and snap the hinges. Flag hinges are the most common type but there are others. A "Check Strap" or restrictor should be fitted to the top of the door to prevent this type of damage.

Associated products:

  • Replacement multipoint locking system
  • Replacement door handles
  • Locking cylinder
  • High security Anti-snap locking cylinder
  • Laminated and toughened safety glass
  • Additional security locks
  • Door Check Strap, Door Restrictor