Five Tips For Choosing a New Front Door

Your home’s front doorsays a lot about you and your family. It adds to the beauty and design of your home’s exterior, welcomes people in and impacts your guest’s first impression. A new front door can make a considerable difference in how people view your home.

Of course, your front door also serves key practical purposes, from your own daily use to the overall security of the house. With all of these factors in mind, it becomes clear that door replacement represents a challenge. You want a door that suits your personal style and welcomes guests in while keeping intruders out.

TAKE THE GUESSWORK OUT OF CHOOSING A NEW FRONT DOOR WITH THESE TIPS:

1. SECURITY

Keeping your family safe from burglars and intruders represents the most important factor in your front door. A high-quality door with solid materials and hardware poses a greater challenge for anyone attempting to break in. Your exterior doors should all have solid-core construction to ensure they cannot be easily broken down. Test your existing front door by pushing a pin into its surface. If the pin easily slips into your door, it likely has a hollow construction and can easily be broken by intruders. High-quality materials including locks and glass have considerable  impact on the security of your front door.

You must also consider your door’s ability to keep out animals. Although they present a less serious risk to your family’s safety, nobody wants to let pests into their homes. Mice can be sneaky, slipping into your home through cracks barely larger than the diameter of a ballpoint pen. Be sure that your new front door keeps out intruders of any species.

2. ACCESS

Imagine this scenario: You purchase a beautiful new sofa for your living room and can’t wait to move it into your home — only to discover it simply won’t fit through the front door no matter how you twist or turn it. Most homeowners have probably run into a similar situation at one point or another.

When replacing your front door, consider the size that you will need beyond regular, everyday use. You want to make sure that everything you bring home — from a new stove or refrigerator to a large dining room table or sectional sofa — will fit easily and safely through the front door. Think about your front door’s ease of access now and save yourself a headache later.

Further, choose your handleslocks, and doorknobs carefully. These are things you will use every single day, so you need to make sure they are easy and simple to use in addition to being high-quality and secure.

3. MICHIGAN’S CLIMATE

Your new front door must withstand Michigan’s varied and unpredictable climate. A quality door will insulate your home from cold Michigan winters, preventing icy drafts from blowing through. An experienced door and window expert can help walk you through what materials will best suit your Michigan home, from weather stripping to insulation to glass.

4. MATERIALS

Most doors are composed of a combination of materials. Many doors may have wood frames but are primarily made from steel or fiberglass, for example.

The materials of your front door greatly affect how long it will last. Older doors are most often wooden, and tend to warp or crack over time. Metal doors may also need eventual replacement due to the surfaces scratching or peeling. However, either of these materials can prove long-lasting with a high-quality door.

Wooden doors are the most common, and include several options to suit different needs, styles and budgets. Solid wood doors are the priciest and can represent thousands of dollars in investment. That said, solid wood doors offer an elegant, stylish option. Be sure to look for a thicker, high-end panel if you choose a solid wood door.

Split construction or wood veneer doors represent a less costly option in a similar style to solid wood. In these models, the door’s core is composed of either insulation or engineered wood, with decorative wood panels on either side. Split construction or wood veneer doors are designed to prevent warping and heat transfer as well as lower the costs of a wooden door.

Fiberglass-composite doors have long warranties as they are the longest-lasting and require the least maintenance. They resist humidity or extreme temperatures, making them a good choice for Michigan homeowners. Additionally, affordability makes fiberglass-composite doors an attractive option.

Steel doors represent the most secure and sturdiest option. Choose a steel door if strength stands as your top concern, as these doors last much longer than wood or fiberglass doors. Most of these doors have a wood core, although some have steel throughout for added strength.

5. STYLE

No matter the materials you choose for your new front door, many options exist to suit a variety of personal styles.

First, consider whether you would prefer decorative glass features on your door. Glass features have the added bonus of letting more natural light into your home. However, some homeowners choose against these features because they feel glass decreases the security of their front doors, as it is easily broken.

Carvings on wood doors offer a decorative alternative to glass features, or an elegant addition to any wooden door. A more intricate carving often signals a higher-quality door, but also indicates a higher expense. However, simplistic decorative carvings offer a more minimal style feature.

Finally, laminate or polyester finishes offer a variety of styles and looks to doors of any material. Don’t assume your steel front door has to look like a cold bank vault. Steel or fiberglass-composite doors can carry finishes in colors to match any style, or in wood-grain textures to mimic a more classic look.

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