French Doors With Screens - All You Need to Know

French doors are great for letting in lots of light and giving you a nice view of the outside. But, if you've ever had them in your home, you know they can also bring unwanted guests like pesky flies.

Maybe you’ve tried to enjoy a cool breeze without inviting bugs into your house, only to end up with a screen door that won’t slide right or gets stuck all the time. Or perhaps you’ve struggled to keep the view clear while blocking out bugs and other outdoor irritants.

In this blog, we’ll examine all the things you need to know about French doors with screens. We’ll discuss how they can improve your life and give you tips on choosing the best ones for your home. 

Stay with us as we figure out how to keep your French doors looking good and working well so you can enjoy your view and fresh air without the hassle.

Can You Put Screens on French Doors?

You can easily add screens to your French patio doors, giving you the flexibility to enjoy the outdoors while keeping insects at bay. 

Whether you choose a simple do-it-yourself installation or opt for professional assistance, the process is straightforward. This way, you can enhance the functionality of your French doors according to your preference and convenience.

French Door Screen Options

When it comes to enhancing your French doors with screens, you have a variety of options to choose from. Each option has its own features, benefits, and considerations. Let's explore two popular choices:

  1. 1. Retractable Screen Doors

Retractable screen doors are a versatile option for French doors. These operate on a mechanism that allows them to retract and extend as needed smoothly. When not in use, they discreetly roll up into a housing unit.


  • Aesthetic Appeal: Retractable screen doors maintain the visual appeal of your French doors, as they are out of sight when retracted.
  • Flexibility: You can choose when to deploy the screen, providing insect protection and fresh air on demand.
  • Durability: High-quality retractable screens are built to withstand regular use, ensuring a longer lifespan.


  • Cost: Retractable screens can be more expensive compared to other options.
  • Complex Installation: Professional installation may add to the overall cost.

  1. 2. Sliding Screen Doors

Sliding screen doors are a practical choice for French doors, offering simplicity in design. Their screens slide along a track system, making them easy to use.


  • Ease of Use: Sliding screen doors operate smoothly on a track, making them user-friendly for all household members.
  • Cost-Effective: They are more budget-friendly than retractable options.


  • Limited Compatibility: While sliding screen doors seamlessly suit sliding French doors, they are unsuitable for those with a swinging mechanism.
  • Obstructed View: When in use, sliding screens may partially obstruct the view through the doors.
  • Maintenance: The track system may require regular cleaning to ensure smooth operation.

How to Choose the Right Screen For Your French Patio Doors?

To select the right screen for your French patio doors, check what’s their mechanism. Based on their mechanism, there are three main types:

1. Hinged French Doors

These classic doors have a traditional swing motion, providing a timeless aesthetic. If you need a screen door, choose retractable screen doors as they facilitate the smooth operation of the door's swinging mechanism. 

2. Sliding French Doors 

Offering a modern touch, sliding French doors glide horizontally over a track and meet in the middle. For such French doors, you can use either a retractable screen door or a sliding screen door. 

3. Double French Doors

This style features two hinged doors side by side, with a swinging mechanism for opening or closing. To prevent blocking the swinging motion of these patio doors, you can use a retractable screen door. 

Benefits of French Doors with Screens

1. Enhancing ventilation and airflow 

Screen doors on your French doors let the fresh summer breeze ventilate your home, keeping it cool. By minimizing the reliance on air conditioning, you not only enjoy comfort but also save on utility costs.

2. Protection Against Insects and Pests:

French doors with screens act as a shield, allowing you to enjoy the fresh breeze while keeping pesky insects and pests at bay. 

3. Allowing Natural Light:

Invite the warmth and brightness of natural light into your living space by using screens on French doors. These let sunlight filter through, creating a welcoming ambiance and reducing the need for artificial lighting during the day.

4. Ease of Use

French doors with screens provide a mechanism that ensures smooth operation, allowing you to open and close the doors effortlessly.

How to Measure the Right Screen Door Dimensions for Your French Door?

1. Face French Door Opening Outwards

Start by standing outside and facing your French door opening. This perspective is crucial for accurately determining the right screen door size.

2. Identify Active and Non-Active Sides:

Find the active side of your French door – the side with the door lock. Your screen door’s active side will match the active side of the french doors.

3. Measure Door Heights

  • Take three height measurements: left, right, and center.
  • Place the measuring tape inside the top rebate of the door frame and pull it to the bottom (sill).
  • Deduct 8 mm from the shortest measurement.
  • Record this as the height of your French screen doors.

4. Measure Door Widths

  • Take three width measurements: top, bottom, and middle.
  • Measure from left to right, ensuring the tape remains straight.
  • Deduct 15 mm from each measurement and choose the smallest.
  • Divide that measurement by 2; this is the width of each screen door.

5. Determine Lock Placement

  • Stand facing the French doors from outside.
  • Decide whether you want the new lock above or below the existing door handle.
  • For the lock above, add 125 mm to the distance from the bottom sill to the top of the existing handle.
  • For the lock below, deduct 60 mm from the distance from the bottom sill to the bottom of the existing handle.

By following these steps, you'll get precise measurements for a perfectly fitting screen door for your French doors.


  • How to clean a French Screen Door?

Clean with a soft brush vacuum attachment or a wet wipe to remove dust particles for a refreshed appearance.

  • How long do French Screen Doors last?

High-quality French screen doors can last for many years with proper maintenance, typically providing durable, long-term use.

  • Can you DIY a French Screen Door Installation?

Yes, DIY installation is possible with proper tools and instructions, but professional installation ensures optimal functionality and longevity.


French doors with screens elevate your living space by seamlessly connecting indoors and outdoors. Whether using retractable or sliding screens, you enjoy benefits like enhanced ventilation, insect protection, natural light, and ease of use. Choosing the right screen involves considering the door type and accurate measurements for a perfect fit.