Milgard vs Andersen Folding Doors

Milgard vs Andersen Folding Doors

Have you noticed how popular big doors have become in houses? Folding doors are the perfect addition in high-end homes and great for homeowners who want to tie together their indoor and outdoor spaces. 

Lots of door manufacturers are making these luxury doors available to homeowners. In this post, we’re comparing Milgard and Andersen folding doors but first, we’ll go over how a folding door operates. 

How do folding doors work?

Folding doors go by a few different names, you may have heard them referred to as accordion doors or bi-fold doors. Each name describes a door system with multiple panels that slide along a track. Standard sliding doors slide horizontally over the track but folding door panels fold in or out over the track – pushed together when open, and pulled out flat when closed. 

Photo Credit: Andersen Windows and Doors - Andersen Folding Outswing Door

Compare Milgard and Andersen Door Features

Materials

Aluminum and aluminum-clad wood are common materials used for building doors. Milgard’s folding door is made with a thermally broken aluminum and Andersen’s folding door is made with aluminum-clad wood.

MILGARD


Photo Credit: Milgard - Bi-Fold Moving Glass Wall System

Material: Thermally Broken Aluminum

Thermally broken aluminum doors are built with a thermal barrier between the interior and exterior halves of the frame. The thermal barrier blocks thermal transfer making it a better and more energy-efficient option than standard aluminum frames.

ANDERSEN

Photo Credit: Andersen Windows and Doors - Andersen Folding Outswing Door

Material: Wood with Aluminum Cladding

Aluminum clad exterior doors have a wood interior. The aluminum cladding on the exterior protects the wood interior from outside elements. Aluminum-clad wood doors are known for their style, durability, and energy efficiency. 

Finishes

Aluminum can be painted, anodized, or powder coated and wood can be painted or stained. Most people are familiar with painting and staining but less familiar with anodizing and powder coatings. 

Paint coats over a surface of an object and over time the color becomes dull and the coating may peel. To protect the material underneath it needs to be painted periodically.

Stains are applied to the surface of the wood and soak into it creating a protective layer. Like paint, the stain has to be reapplied periodically to protect the wood from water, insects, and the sun.

Anodized finishes are hard, durable, and weather-resistant. Anodized finishes won’t peel off because the process that creates the anodized coating actually makes the coating an integral part of the metal.

Powder-coated finishes are available in a broad range of colors. The powder coating is applied and then baked in a curing oven. The coating is bonded to the aluminum and resistant to chipping and peeling.

MILGARD

Finishes: Anodized or Powder-Coated

Milgard offers four color options on their folding doors, two are anodized finishes and two are powder-coated finishes. 

Powder-coated: White or Tan
Anodized: Clear or Dark Bronze

ANDERSEN

Exterior Finishes: Anodized or Powder Coated

Andersen has the widest selection of color finishes for folding doors. Choose from seven anodized finishes or 50 powder-coated color finishes. 

Powder-coated: 50 color options
Anodized: 7 color options

Panels

Big doors are basically moving glass walls, they’re oversized door panels used to replace a standard wall. These huge glass panels increase the amount of natural light entering your home. In addition to choosing finishes, you can customize the look of your door with grids, the number of panels used and deciding between contemporary or traditional profiles. 

MILGARD

Choose 3, 4, 5, 6, or 7 panels for your door system. Milgard’s folding door has a contemporary profile with narrow rails and stiles. 

Number of Panels: 3-7

Example of a Milgard configuration, image from Milgard.

ANDERSEN

Andersen doors offer lots of customization options. Choose between traditional panels with three bottom rail height options (4-11/16”, 8”, 12”) or contemporary panels with 3-11/16” stiles and rails. 

Number of Panels: 2-16
Panel Types: Traditional or Contemporary

Traditional Door Panels, images from Andersen.

Contemporary Door Panels, images from Andersen.

Cost

If cost is your biggest concern regarding folding doors then you’ll want to know which is more expensive, Milgard or Andersen. Generally, you can expect Andersen products to be more expensive than Milgard. While Andersen is more expensive, it does have a strong reputation and a long history of manufacturing quality products. 

Lead Time

Lead time can vary by season, location, and unforeseen circumstances. 

Milgard Bi-Fold Glass Wall System: 5-10 weeks (depending on finish)
Andersen Folding Doors: 6-8 weeks

Choose a door from the manufacturer that best meets your needs and budget then explore your installation options. Start by searching through the manufacturer's dealer partners, they'll be most familiar and most likely to have access to the door system that you want. The dealer should also have their own installation team with experience installing these complex door systems. 

To learn more details about either of these door systems visit the Doors section of our website. 

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