Suggestions from Master Doors Canada
Entry doors are available in several materials, including wood, fibreglass, steel, and medium-density fiberboard (MDF). Compared to prefabricated options, wood offers a versatile, durable, beautiful alternative for front doors. If you’re wondering whether a solid wood exterior door is the right choice for your home, here are a few tips to guide your decision.
Tip #1 – Evaluate the location of your entry door
The ideal conditions for a solid wood exterior door protect it from rain and snow. If you have a covered entry, take a rough estimate of the dimensions:
- Does the roof extend by a length that is at least half the distance between the door and the roof? For example, if the roofline is 8 feet or 2.4 meters above the door landing, then it should project 4 feet or 1.2 meters over the entryway. And the overhang would ideally measure 1.5 times the door’s width.
- Does the entry door face the sun? More than 4 hours of daily sun exposure will take a toll on a wooden door. Fortunately, stains and finishes are available to apply for additional protection that lasts several years before reapplication.
- Does the door’s sill sit above the porch by 4 to 6 inches (10.2 to 15.2 cm)? The gap is essential to preventing rainwater or snow build-up, which can damage a wooden sill.
- Is your home in a fire region? Your local building codes will reflect additional requirements for wooden doors. Some exterior doors will withstand inferno-level conditions for as much as 60 minutes.
- What’s your average temperature in the winter? Custom-designed solid wood entry doors that are more than 2-inches (5 cm) thick will provide substantial insulation. Add tight weather strips to increase the door’s ability to keep the cold air out.
Tip #2 – Estimate your front door dimensions
Although reputable manufacturers of exterior doors in Canada will take precise measurements, it’s helpful to have a rough idea of door size when you begin discussing your project.
- The width of your door is the first dimension to mention. You can share sizing in feet or meters and inches or centimetres. But start with the width, then measure the height.
- Notice whether your door is a right or left-sided door. Are the hinges on the right or the left when you view the entry door from the porch? Hinges on the right? You have a right-sided exterior door. A left-sided door has hinges on the left.
Tip #3 – Ask about the safety features of your custom wood door design
You may hear or read that solid wood entry doors are not easy to break in. The latch and door jamb of some wood doors are the weak links.
- A top-notch door manufacturer will suggest an extended security strike plate and installation with screws that reach into the frame of your house.
- And they’ll share a similar recommendation about hinges to anchor the hinge side of the door to a stud in the door frame.
- Explore door thickness to get the maximum that can incorporate standard locks. Or, ask about locks and hinges designed to fit your custom entry door.
- Tempered glass door lights offer a barrier to break-ins, but wrought-iron design glass brings beauty and additional security to your exterior door.
- For a stronger-than-average lockset for your entry door, consider a Mortise lock created with higher-grade steel.
Ready to get a fresh look for your exterior door? Contact the Master Doors Canada team today!