A good set of exterior doors can be a key focal point in your home. These doors tend to prematurely show their age because they are constantly exposed to heavy wear and the elements. Wooden exterior doors bring in a warm and natural look to your home which makes them popular despite the fact that they are very vulnerable to weather conditions. After a while of exposure to the elements, the wood in your exterior doors will eventually crack, bow or warp while the wood fibers may swell or shrink.
There are a wide range of external doors to choose from in terms of sizes, designs and styles. You may opt for the more conventional wooden exterior doors or go for the more modern high-tech alternatives constructed out of fiberglass composites and steel.
When buying exterior doors, you can go for the bare bones or buy the entire entry system which will comprise of the pre hung door in its frame, its bottom edge interlocking with the threshold and weather stripping to encircle its perimeter.
When it comes to your choice of building materials, you also have a wide selection to choose from. Wood is one of the most popular choices for external doors due to its classic look that never goes out of style.
You may go for wood doors with steel interiors or steel doors with wooden exteriors. Other options include steel or fiberglass doors with wooden frames as well as those with a core of foam insulation. Of course, the cost of your external doors is dependent on the cost, appearance, durability and security provided by the door.
You may opt for flush or paneled external doors. Flush doors are smooth and flat on both sides, while paneled doors are designed with rectangular recesses which are framed by vertical stiles and horizontal rails. Panel exterior doors are designed in this way so as to minimize warping and cracking by providing the panels room to shift as they contract and expand with changes in humidity. On the other hand, doors with door lights feature panel construction with one or more lights substituting for a panel or panels.
Exterior doors such as patio or terrace doors are hinged and also feature glass lights. French doors are external or hinged glass lite doors which are mounted in pairs that are able to swing independently. Exterior sliding doors are designed with one fixed panel and another panel which glides along the top and bottom tracks. These types of exterior doors are easy to operate, tend to seal out the weather well and allow in sufficient light as well.
You may opt for left-hand external doors that open towards you and have their knobs on the left side of the door; or go for the right hand exterior doors which open toward you and have the knob on the right side. A great front entry exterior door will be able to provide you with the security you need, while also adding a touch of elegance and value to your home.
One of the most important decisions you have to make whether building a new home or replacing existing windows and doors, is your exterior door. Remember this one item is what provides visitors with the first impression of your home as they walk up the path.
You may have a beautiful modern home surrounded by a spectacular and cared for garden, but it's the front door that makes the first impression, which is why you have to put a lot of thought and time into your decision to ensure you choose the right match that not only makes a great first impression, but enhances the finished style of your home.
In addition to making a good first impression, exterior doors need to be durable. Weather can change in an instant and they need to withstand temperature changes, rain, snow and sun. As you can imagine these are varying weather systems which can damage a poor quality door within its first year, which is why you need to choose with care to ensure your exterior door doesn't need replacing in the near future.
Material is probably going to be the hardest deciding factor.