Exterior entry doors are the most important door in any home. The entry door gives “first impression” of your home to visitors. Make this first impression with a wisely chosen elegant entry door. An elegant and beautiful exterior entry door can improve the beauty and appearance of your home and at the same time it can also add value to your home. Entry and exterior doors are exposed to all kinds of weather – heat, cold, rain, snow and storm. This leads to increased depreciation or wear and tear of exterior doors.
Let us now understand how to choose the best exterior entry door / front door and things to remember while buying the front entry door.
Exterior Entry Doors / Front Doors History
Most older entry doors were made of wood because of limited options available. These wood entry doors are good and give a natural look. But because of exposure to severe weather conditions, these wood doors loose their natural shine and beauty over a period of time.
Things have changed now. Wood is no longer cheaper. It is now no less than a luxury. In fact there are other alternative options available that can substitute wood and still resemble wood and give the same feel and look. Homeowners now have options of metal and fiberglass doors with elegant and high-tech design.
Exterior Entry Doors (Front Door) Buying Guide
There has been significant change in the way doors are manufactured now-a-days. Material used to make/ manufacture doors have changed. Wood doors have become a kind of luxury. Metal doors such as steel door and fiberglass doors have gained significant popularity and acceptance. Even wooded doors now have a combination of wood and metal. Some wood doors have steel interiors, and steel doors have wood exteriors. A fiberglass or steel door may have a wood frame. Many doors even have a core of foam insulation. A door that opens toward you and has its knob on the left side is a left-hand door. A door that opens toward you and has its knob on the right side is a right-hand door.
Choosing the exterior / entry / front door and door material entirely depends on your own budget, lifestyle and taste. The choice of wood, fiberglass, or steel as the door surface material can have significant impact on a door’s appearance, cost, durability and security.
All doors, wood, metal and fiberglass, are termed either “flush” or “paneled” doors. Flush doors are smooth and flat on both sides. Paneled doors have rectangular recesses/ panels framed by horizontal rails and vertical stiles. Doors with doorlites have panel construction with one or more lites substituting for panels.
A terrace or patio door is hinged and may have glass lites. Hinged glass-lite doors mounted in pairs that swing independently are called French doors.
Exterior sliders / slider doors have one fixed panel and another panel that glides along top and bottom tracks on rollers.