Does anyone have experience with the Atrium brand of sliding glass
doors? HD will order them for ~$600 less than Anderson and since I
need to get two of them the price is attractive. Is the difference in
quality or name-brand markup? I can't find much useful on the web.
Generalities such as Pella is better than Andersen are just that
generalities. Unfortunately each of these products have many series, for
Pella, it's Architectural Series, Designer, and ProLine (frankly I find
ProLine a cheap and awful window, my opinion), Andersen has Series 200, 400,
Woodwright, and KML Custom. Now I am in the fenestration industry and work
for neither of these companies, but dealing in generalities is plain dumb.
As for the Atrium Door, at one time it was the premier brand (early '80's)
of swinging patio doors. Today, there are allot of choices. I couldn't
tell you about their quality objectively.
Do your homework, and go to places other than HD where you might actually
find an expert who can explain the differences in quality.
I look for the following, assuming its a swinging door:
Unit comes pre-hung and set-up in its frame unless you are over 12' in width
Hinges are adjustable
The finish of the exterior is superior - if an Aluminum Clad product, it
should be extruded with an AAMA2605 Finish, which will keep the product from
fading or chalking, if your budget is in the vinyl clads, avoid the dark
colors as these will show noticeable chalks in an unreasonable period of
The hardware operates smoothly
The door performance (Air/Water/Structural) is DP30 or higher
Depending on your climate and the current insulating value of your home add
Low E II
Of course this all depends on your budget, you have to feel you received
value for your purchase. You are the ultimate judge of that.
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