Patio doors are perhaps one of the most commonly features for any kind of home. Whatever they are sliding doors, swinging patio doors or pre-hung French doors, they must meet two essential conditions namely aesthetics and protection against wind and rain, especially when they are not protected by storm doors.
However, you should take in consideration that French doors are chosen to enhance the looks of the exterior and interior of your house not for protection, and even with a properly flashing and caulking there are times especially in the days with rain and strong wind when French doors are leaking water.
Unfortunately, this unpleasant situation is quite common for all kind of swinging doors, especially if they swing inward and is even worse if these two doors meet in the middle of the opening. A very strong wind will push the doors inside and will weaken of course, the seam and when it is a rainy day they will leak. They will not only leak water inside, but will let in a fairly large amount of water.
This is because it is almost impossible to ensure a perfect sealing for these types of patio doors. However, when the stationary panel of the French doors is latched at both the bottom and the top and the movable panel is locked, they will form a quite weather resistant seam. Nevertheless, rain water can easily penetrate inside your home through the space between the bottom of the doors and threshold, especially if the threshold is level with the floor.
However, they don’t leak all the time but only when they are directly hit by strong winds and heavy rains. Leaking is not really a problem for those who live in sunny areas of the country, with many sunny days per year, but for those living in coastal areas with heavy rain is quite annoying to find their carpet wet all the time. It is not healthy and could lead to further serious problems related to moisture such as even mold development.
Fixing Leaky French Doors
You have several options “to fix” your French doors not to leak.
To keep the French doors and also other types of singing doors to leak water, you need a kind of barrier between the door and the wind that hits your door. This can be easily and simply achieved by adding an awning, a screen door or a storm door.
Several well-placed shrubs and trees or even a fence very close from your doors can also be effective windbreaks.
A good and smart idea is to build a verandahs that will protect your doors and will create a beautiful transition area between outdoor and indoor spaces.