Factors to consider when buying exterior doors

Factors to consider when buying exterior doors

Exterior doors are used as entryways for many sections of the house. These exterior doors need to be very tough, durable, and available in different materials and styles.

Popular materials
Exterior doors can be made of wood, steel, aluminum, fiberglass, or steel. You can also install sliding glass doors on patios.

  • Wood
    They look good and you can buy different varieties and different qualities of wood. This ranges from expensive high-end wood to less costly composite materials. Wooden doors are resistant to cracks and dents, and provide a very traditional and attractive entry door option. Panel construction helps to counteract the effects of swelling and shrinking caused by the weather. However, wood doors soon age as rain and heat leave their marks unless the quality of wood used is very high. They need regular care and maintenance, you need to repaint or varnish them to keep them looking their best.
  • Fiberglass
    This material is becoming a popular choice in entryway doors. They can come in different thickness and many styles, provide good insulation, and are very resistant to the weather and other external factors. They come in flat, smooth, or textured styles that mimic the looks of wooden doors. This is a good option if you want the classic wood door appearance without the expense involved in buying a good hardwood door. However, they crack more easily under heavy impact than wood or steel doors
  • Steel
    Steel doors are tough and durable, they are low maintenance, but they can scratch and dent easily and are not as weather resistant as fiberglass doors. However, if you give them a good coating of paint, and repair scratches immediately, they can be a great option even for front doors. Different kinds of finishes and painting make them look more like wood doors than metal. They generally provide better insulation than wooden doors.

Ready-to-install doors
Are you shopping for just a door to fit inside a pre-existing frame? Be sure to take exact measurements of the door frame and also the height, width, and thickness of the door you are replacing. This will help you buy a door that fits correctly, whatever material you choose.

If you are looking to replace your entire doorway with the frame, you can buy prehung doors with frames. Again, be sure to take correct measurements. You can now buy entry systems  with predrilled holes for knobs and deadbolts, with hinges, locksets, and other hardware designed to work together perfectly. These systems also ensure that the bottom of the door correctly engages with the threshold and can include weatherstripping around the outer edges of the door.

The appearance of the door becomes more important depending on where it is going to be installed. Front doors are the first noticeable feature from outside the house, so they should look good as well as be tough and durable. Backdoors may also need to look good though not as attractive as front doors. Side doors and doors leading into the house from the garage need to be more hardy than attractive.

Make sure that your exterior doors are tough enough to provide good protection against the weather and against break-ins. Buy entry systems if possible and install good locks and security systems to enhance safety.