A new front door has the power to transform your house and create a great first impression for visitors. However, it pays to do your research properly beforehand – choosing the wrong size or design could prove a costly and time-consuming error.
There are numerous aspects to keep in mind while choosing a door, including size, design, construction, material, accessories and budget.
Off-the-shelf doors are located in a variety of standard sizes that are popular. These are generally classified by width, and range from 30″ to 36″. If your framework doesn’t conform to some standard size you could be able to trim the door to match; many wooden doorways can be decreased by around 12mm along every edge.
In some cases you might be better off purchasing a complete door set, which consists of a frame and fitting door. This may be a particularly good move for those who have an older house, where the initial framework might have warped or cracked over time. As an alternative, you may decide to pay a bit more and have the doorway made to quantify.
As the front door will set the tone for the whole home, it’s important to decide on a design and colour in keeping with the overall architectural style. This applies to additional fittings such as door handles and correspondence boxes too.
The method by which in which the doorway was constructed plays a part as well. Less expensive dowel doors are created from kiln-dried wood that’s been constructed using fluted dowels (small wooden pegs) and adhesive.
The most popular kind of natural material used in external doors is timber, especially walnut, pine and hemlock. Solid timber is prone to cracking and warping over time, therefore today most wooden doors are made from engineered timber. This is made by gluing together tiny sections of wood to form a multi-layered construction that’s stronger and more stable than solid timber. The components are covered in wood veneer afterwards – a procedure which ensures matching grain and colour throughout the door panels.
Engineered timber is better for your environment, since the production process generates less waste.
Composite door sets made of fibreglass are getting increasingly popular. Weather resistant and low maintenance, these doors come in an assortment of colors, require no protective treatment and supply a realistic-looking choice to wood versions. They are also lighter than wooden doorways, making them simpler to hang, and won’t warp or split.
Another minimal maintenance option is PVC. This heavy-duty plastic remains widely used for sliding patio doors, but is less favoured for entrance doors today due to its comparatively flimsy construction and synthetic appearance.
Clearly, your selection will be influenced by the size of your budget. If price is a significant concern, think about a door made from engineered pine or hemlock. Many doors are available without glazing, so you have the choice to insert your personal patterned or stained glass for an individual touch. Purchasing a door that is unsightly and painting or staining it yourself will save money. Single-glazed doors are normally the most affordable, but obviously do not provide the exact level of insulation as double or triple glazing, so can prove more expensive lasting.
Hardwood doors cost a little more, but are more durable than pine and can nevertheless be found at reasonable rates. Oak is the premium choice, offering an attractive grain, excellent weather resistance and an undeniable sense of luxury.
Composite doors are more expensive than many wood doors originally but have the advantage of requiring no maintenance or finishing, saving money and time in the long term.
You will also have to factor in the cost of door furniture. This can vary hugely, from approximately #10 for a pair of easy chrome-effect zinc grips to greater than #100 to get a superior set made from brass or polished nickel. You may realize that a handle kit, including handles, hinges, fixing screws and a latch, is the most convenient alternative.
Letter boxes, also called letter plates, come in a wide range of styles and price points. You can grab a plain chrome-effect version for under #10, while brass letter plates begin at around #18. An engraved brass or wrought iron letter plate could set you back by whatever between #150 and #450, depending on the finish.
A good quality lock is also important – for the best protection, look for ones marketed as anti-bump, anti-pick and anti-drill. To complete, you will probably wish to put in a knocker or bell (unless you’ve decided on a letter plate comprising a postal knocker).
These are simply a couple of things to take into consideration when choosing a door. However, keep in mind that unless you have a porch or canopy, your front entrance way is going to be at the mercy of the weather – therefore do not automatically select the least expensive option. A fantastic excellent door, properly finished, will remain looking great for many years and provide a first impression which you may be pleased with.