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3-Panel Sliding Patio Door

15 years ago

We are replacing an old 4-panel sliding patio door that was made by Weathershield. The rough opening is 141 1/4". We have decided that we would prefer a 3-panel configuration, in which the center panel slides. We have also decided that we would prefer either Aluminum-clad wood, or Fiberglass. The door will be white exterior and white interior, and we prefer the traditional narrow look to the French look. We don't care about having wood grain on the interior, as we just want it to be smooth white. I am particularly interested in Fiberglass, as it seems like the most worry-free solution - tough, no rust, no rot, etc. The location for this door does not get much sun, and wood rot has been a problem in the past.

Most of the manufacturer's that we checked out offer a standard 3-panel door that is 144" or more wide, which won't work for us. So, we have narrowed it down to 3 custom-sized options:

1. Weathershield Custom Shield - Al clad wood

2. Peachtree 700 series - Al clad wood

3. Milgard custom fiberglass

All of the above are between $4000-$5000, installed.

Any advice on the above options? None of the above companies have a great reputation on these forums, which is troubling. I'd love to go with Pella, Andersen, or Marvin, but...Marvin just seems way too expensive, Andersen doesn't do custom sizes in their narrowline 200 series, and Pella's custom option is French-style and very expensive. We already feel like we're spending quite a bit on this door, and would prefer not to go much higher. If anyone could relay their experience with a sliding patio door, even if it is in the normal 2-panel configuration, we'd appreciate it. It's amazing to me that we're about to spend this amount of money on a door, and we can't even see one locally before we buy!

Btw, one other option that will fit is a standard 4-panel Therma-Tru SlimLine, which also falls in the above price range. This one is fiberglass too. I checked a 2-panel version of this one out locally and thought it seemed solid. If we can't build our confidence in one of the 3 options above, we might fall back to this one.

Thanks for any feedback!

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