How To Know When To Replace Your Patio Doors

You’re living the dream. You have a nice house with a gorgeous patio. You go to open your patio door to enjoy a crisp autumn day when you realize that the door…just…won’t…move. You’re probably thinking “Oh no, am I going to have to get a whole new door?” We’re hoping you won’t. When it comes to replacing doors, one always hopes that repair will do instead. In this article, we’re going to look at some patio door hang-ups (they’re usually sliding doors), and when to repair or replace them.

 

Your Sliding Doors Are Jamming Doors

 

This is one of the most common culprits for patio door replacement calls – the sliding doors just aren’t sliding anymore. This might be something as simple as a misalignment that can be repaired by putting the door back in place. You might also be able to replace the rollers with relative ease. It’s when the track itself has become warped and damaged, often because of temperature changes and moisture, that you might need a whole door replacement. 

 

The Seal Is Broken

 

When you feel constant drafts from your patio door, it’s likely that the weather seal on your door is busted. Once again, this is a problem that doesn’t require a whole new door. You can replace the seal yourself for a lot less than the cost of a new door. Where things start getting tricky is when there are cracks or deformations in the door frame itself. This kind of problem isn’t readily fixed by a new seal and can easily contribute to outside air seeping in. 

 

Aesthetics

 

You’re looking at your old sliding door and thinking to yourself,  “My patio is beautiful, and this thing is ugly”. Now here’s a spot where there’s usually no easy repair fix. I guess you could decorate the door frame? Use some decals – that would block the beautiful view of your patio, though. In this case, you’re probably going to want to replace the door. If you’ve got sliding doors, you might want to replace them with something fancy like French doors, so you can still see your patio.

 

Cracks & Condensation

 

When the glass in your door frame is starting to crack or the frame is starting to crack, there usually isn’t an easy fix. You can replace the glass, but that can often be almost as expensive as just getting a new door. You might also notice condensation forming between glass panes –  that’s going to lead to problems and is a good sign you need a replacement.

 

Here at Polar, our professional door installers are hired in-house – that means the same folks who are making the doors, install them too. That’s a huge bonus – it means we can offer extensive warranties and that the people doing the installation know the product inside and out, so they can answer any questions for you. We hope you can repair your patio doors, but if you can’t, get in touch with us – we’ll set you up with doors that are perfect for your space. 

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6 Tips For Keeping Your Home Warm This Winter

There’s no better feeling than sitting inside in your warm living room on a cold winter day, wearing a pair of cozy slippers and watching a holiday flick. That is, if your home isn’t letting that pesky cold in.

If you’re feeling the chill in your home this winter, here are some tips for sending it right back out so you can comfortably finish Elf for the fiftieth time.

1. Get yourself a humidifier

Vapor from humidifier in the morning light in a living room

Humidity can make a room feel much warmer than it actually is. It’s a relatively inexpensive one-time purchase that will help combat the cold and in the long run, be the much more affordable option to jacking up the heat in your place.

2. Close your curtains at night…

Believe it or not, your curtains can be effective in keeping warm air from escaping through the windows. Closing them at night allows them to act as an extra layer of insulation and helps keep the room warm. This can also reduce condensation on your windows.

3. …But keep them open during the day

Contrary to the last tip, try opening your blinds during the day to let the sun heat your home up, especially on south-facing windows. Although it’s cold outside, the concentrated heat from the sun can really warm up the room. The natural heat can also save you a bit of money on your next energy bill.

4. Replace poorly insulated windows

Especially in Canada’s cold winter climate, the integrity of your windows can be the difference between a cold home and a warm one. Dated or poorly insulated windows will allow too much of your home’s warm air to seep through the cracks, leaving a semi-permanent chill in your place. Polar’s triple-pane windows are designed to keep the cold out. If you’re due for a window replacement, we’ll make sure your home receives the care it deserves.

5. Replace poorly insulated doors

cold-707165_1920

Just like poorly insulated windows, a dated entry door can let in cold drafts that are sure to jack up your heating bill. In the long run, you’ll end up paying much more on energy bills than you would on the actual door, so save yourself the cash. Polar doors are built for Canadian climates, meaning you won’t have to ruin perfectly good towels by stuffing them under your current doors to deal with those cool drafts anymore.

6. Move your furniture to warm spots

Maximize your warmth potential by finding the warmest spots in your house and hanging out in them. Got a fireplace? Centre your furniture around it. See a warm vent overhead? Guess you just found a great new spot for that ottoman you never really sit on. You may end up finding that your furniture is now strewn about your place in a strange fashion, but as Canadians, we’ll do whatever we can to combat the treacherous outdoor freeze.

Looking for a new door or set of windows? Book your free, in-home consultation today.

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5 Signs You Need to Replace Your Old Windows

Windows play a big part in the comfort of your home. They let in sunlight and refreshing outdoor air, and they enable the beautiful views of your neighbourhood. But eventually, your windows wear down. We know it can be difficult to tell just how much life your windows have left in them. Here’s a short list of telltale signs that you should move “new windows” to the top of your summer renovations list!

 

  1. Your Windows Won’t Function

 

Do you dread opening your windows? If they get stuck on their tracks, require a lot of jiggling, or don’t stay where you leave them, that’s not normal. Windows, especially wood ones, can warp over time as they take in moisture, causing them to function irregularly or not at all.

You can trust that if your windows don’t lock when they’re closed or require assistance to keep open, they are not properly sealed in the frame and require replacement.

 

  1. You Have High Energy Bills

 

If you had a hole in your house, you would patch it. When your windows aren’t properly sealed and insulated, the controlled air inside your home escapes through these unsealed spaces. Visible spaces in your windows are one thing, but you can detect any unseen drafts in your windows by slowly running your hand or a candle flame around the frames of your windows.

All that extra air your home requires to heat and cool adds up, the result of which is the number you’ll see on your energy bill. New windows seal these gaps properly and for the long term.

 

  1. There’s Noticeable Condensation, Leaking, and Decay

 

Windows are meant to keep the moisture out, not soak it in. You’ll need new windows if you’re noticing an excess of peeling paint, spots of wet wood, and mould. Condensation between the panes of glass in a window is a sign the seal has failed and needs replacing.

The other plus to replacing old looking windows is a significant bump in your home’s general curb appeal. People tend to notice the sharp look of new windows.

 

  1. You Can Hear Everything Outside

 

Your home is your temple. It should keep you comfortable and make you feel relaxed. If you can clearly hear traffic noise, lawn mowers, and noisy neighbours, your home may feel less private than it truly is. Your windows are to blame.

Windows transfer the vibrations of sound outside into your home, and when they’re not thick or properly sealed, they let in a lot of sound pollution. New windows with a professional seal virtually soundproof your home from outside noise. In addition to a visual improvement, you’ll be able to hear the difference too.

 

  1. They Look Awful

 

Because they’re constantly exposed to the elements, your windows require attention and maintenance year-round to ensure they’re performing correctly. However, those frames won’t last forever in the sun and rain. If you’re spending a lot of your time cleaning, scraping, and repainting your windows just to have them look only passable presentable, you may fair better with new windows. You’ll be able to save time, clear away any rusted and rotting materials, and they’ll present beautifully.

 

If your windows are looking a little worn, we can help. Book us for a hassle-free home estimate today.

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Tips to Take Your Front Door from Drab to Fab!

Have you ever taken a moment to stop and think about the kind of impression your front door makes on passers-by or guests as they arrive at your house? Does it create a welcoming environment or make a bold artistic statement? At the very least, does it look clean and tidy? If you’re unsure, chances are that now’s the time to spend a little time working on an update. There are plenty of ways to take your entryway from drab to fab–and here are a few ideas to get you started!

 1) Add color!

Choosing a bright color is the perfect way to draw attention to a new front door. You can choose a color that complements your shutters or other detailing on your home, or maybe just a bold and bright hue that is guaranteed to put a smile on your face each day when you get home from work. Even if you have a more subdued color palette throughout your property, you can go wild with a gorgeous and fun color in the entrance.

 2) Choose a distinguishable architectural style.

Some architectural styles, like Craftsman and Victorian, are recognizable almost instantly. Look beyond those standard off-the-shelf options and find a style that is both functional and stylish! If your home boasts a well-defined architectural style, selecting an extra special front door can be like the cherry on top of a beautiful property.

 3) Go with a unique size or shape.

A curved top border or noticeably oversized measurements can attract a lot of attention. Smaller proportions often add a quirky or historical feel, while an extra-wide approach makes a bold statement.

These are just a few simple ways you can make your entryway a beautiful highlight of your property. Before you choose which option to pursue, look for inspiration and find a style that you absolutely love!

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Dead as a Doorknob? Yes, in Vancouver

 

From wheelchair ramps to braille on ATMs, society is becoming more inclusive by making the world accessible to individuals with disabilities. The next change will open many doors–literally. Vancouver has amended its building code to require buildings to use levers instead of doorknobs. This will make the city more accessible for the elderly and anyone who suffers from arthritis or weakened hands. This shift follows other changes in architecture and infrastructure, such as cut curbs at sidewalk corners. The aim is to make the city “universally accessible.”

Universally accessible design has the needs of the whole population at its core. Traditional architecture includes adaptations like ramps or external lifts that make structures accessible for individuals with disabilities. On the other hand, universally accessible design makes life easier for able-bodied people as well–consider the times you’ve tried opening doorknobs with your hands full of grocery bags. The mechanics of a lever make this task simpler for all.

While there is a change, it is not necessarily a ban. Old structures with round knobs will be grandfathered in. However, all new structures will be required to use door levers instead of knobs. Structures ranging from homes to government offices will have to comply with the change. Still, many people aren’t accepting this change with open arms. Doorknobs do have aesthetic value, and many old homes have valuable historic hardware.

Vancouver is the only city in Canada with its own building code, which makes it both a building code trend-setter and laboratory for change. It is yet to be seen whether other areas of the country as a whole will embrace the change from round handles to levers.

Thanks to Elvert Barnes for the image.

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