What to look for in replacement doors

The doors to your home are designed to you and your family safe from unwanted people, pests, and weather. If you the doors to your home are failing to do their job, then it may be time to look at replacement doors. This is especially true if your front door is weathered, scratched, or dented, has cracks or breaks either along its edges or within its panels, or lets in drafts. In addition, a new door may be in order if you have encountered difficulty getting the door to hang level on its hinges or it is often a hassle to close and lock it.

When it comes to door installation, new entryway doors are generally made out of fiberglass, steel, or wood. Fiberglass is the most cost efficient and can be made to look like wood. However, while more weather resistant, they do not withstand wear and tear as well as steel. Steel, which accounts for the makeup of almost half the doors on the market, was more easily dented and must be painted if one occurs so that it does not rust. However, it is the most energy efficient type of door. Wood is the most expensive material to have a door made from and is the best at combating wear and tear. However, they require regular painting or varnishing in order to look their best.

Once you have selected a material to have your door made out of, you can then begin to personalize it. This can be done through the choice of styles and finishes that are available, as well as with glazing options, glass inserts, sidelights, and transoms. The more elaborate the design, the more the door will cost. You can also choose from a variety of different hardware, including door knobs, handles, and lock sets to make the door your own. Also, be sure that the door opens on the side that is best for you and leave installation to the professionals so that you know it is done correctly and will last.

Regardless of what you choose in materials, hardware, or finishes, be sure that your door comes with an adjustable threshold as this helps to keep the door weather-tight over time. Without this, you may eventually need to add a new sweep to the bottom in order to seal out rain and drafts. In addition, make sure that the rails and stiles, the horizontal and vertical parts that brace a wood door are made from laminated wood covered with veneer, as these materials provide the greatest resistance to warping.

Bear in mind that while it may seem pricey up front, a properly maintained door can last for decades. In addition, front door replacement ranks as the single most cost-effective home upgrade. If has been found to return more than 95% of the investment. Moreover, a new front door also improves the home’s appearance, energy efficiency, security, and ease of operation. If you are still feeling a draft after installation is complete, it may be time to look at replacement windows, as well.