The front entranceway to your home is probably the most important part of your home exterior. Not only does it enhance (or detract) from your curb appeal, but the door you choose plays a big role in home security, too.
Additionally, you want your front door to withstand every element that’s thrown at it — rain, wind, harsh sunshine, snow, etc. In short, your front door should be able to carry the burden of many responsibilities.
For more on how to choose a front door, this blog outlines all the essentials.
Front Door Materials to Consider: Wood
This is probably the most popular option for most front doors — and not for nothing. Wood is wonderfully versatile, ornate, and hard-wearing.
You also have the chance to be as creative as you like with wood doors. You can choose from custom styles, and a range of wood types such as oak, maple, walnut, mahogany, the list goes on.
There’s also the option of paint-grade doors in a number of varieties to choose from, including western hemlock and pine. Wood doors are specifically engineered to withstand all the elements, too.
You’ll find that they comprise sandwiched pieces of wood veneer over a solid wood core. This design helps to minimize the contraction and expansion of wood doors, and prevent warping.
Wooden doors are also affordable and start from as little as $200 for a stock wood door. If you’re looking for something a little more solid, expect to pay an average of $2,000-$4,000 for a complete door system installation.
Make sure that the door you choose has a durable wood stain and clear finish, which includes polyurethane. Remember that high-gloss doors tend to offer the best, long-lasting protection for painted wood doors.
If home security is top-of-mind for you, then you want to opt for a steel door. They offer the best durability and stability when compared to any other door material.
They’re also completely impervious to warping, scratching, cracking, and expansion. Dents are also easy to fix with a simple auto-body repair kit.
If you’re looking for the cheapest options for a front door, believe it or not, steel is your go-to. They tend to cost the least, starting at just $150 for a steel-paneled door, without glazing or hardware.
But keep in mind that a full steel door system that includes top-quality hardware and sidelights will probably cost the same as a hardwood door system.
Steel doors are also a brilliant option for added insulation. This is because the cavities inside the door’s inner frame include high-density foam.
Today, you can opt for steel doors with a smooth surface, coated in polyester and paint. Or, there’s also mock wood-grain patterns, wood-fiber coating, or laminated wood veneer.
This is yet another front door material that’s made to last and well worth the investment. Fiberglass-composite is especially tough, low-maintenance, and great for homes in harsh climates.
If you live in an area that experiences high rainfall, snowfall, humidity, or harsh sunshine, this is a good front door material to consider.
This material is engineered to mimic the look of wood, and you can choose from several wood-grain textures such as cherry, walnut, oak, and more.
They also offer good home insulation and sound protection as the framework of these doors includes polyurethane foam insulation. The added bonus is that you can expect a long warranty on a fiberglass-composite door. In theory, it should last as long as you own your home.
They’re also affordable and begin at $200 for the door alone. However, with a fully-loaded fiberglass frame system, you could pay up to $4,000.
Aluminum doors are very similar in nature to steel doors. In fact, they comprise the same insulation at the core, which is then covered by an aluminum coating.
This being said, aluminum doors are not all that common and are generally sold through dealers. However, if you want a custom-built and designed front door, this is a great option.
An aluminum front door is robust, long-wearing, and will never rust due to its painted coating.
They are on the pricey end of the spectrum, starting off at $600. But most of them include 20-year warranties so they’re definitely worth the investment!
Door Style Considerations
What about the style and aesthetic of your front door? This is a crucial element in adding curb appeal to your home.
With so many door styles to choose from today, you want to keep these fundamentals in mind:
- Choose a style that complements the rest of your home exterior
- Opt for a door color that ”pops”, i.e. stands out from the rest of your home, but also ties in with the color scheme
- Use your front door to match the personality of your home and family
If you have more of a traditional-style home, you might want to opt for a classic, wood-paneled door with simple hardware elements. If your home is on the more artistic side, a door with decorative glass may suit your exterior better.
Remember that a good way to enhance the security of your front door area is to add lighting to your entranceway. Whether it’s side-lighting or a large hanging pendant, ensure this space is well-lit.
Another element to think about is whether your front door should swing inwards or outwards. In most cases, fronts doors swing inwards. However, it depends on the region you live in.
For example, if you live in an area prone to stormy weather, an outward swinging door is a better option. This provides defense against strong winds.
But if you live in a region prone to heavy snowfall, an inward swinging door is the smarter choice. This way, you can open your door with ease in the case of accumulated snowfall.
Front Door Locks
While the material, style, and color of your front door are all crucial elements, the lock system is what’s really important.
As a homeowner, safety is usually at the forefront of your mind. In this case, you want to opt for a deadbolt locking system. This system prevents burglars from picking locks or using the simple credit card trick to flip the lock.
When it comes to security rating grades for exterior doors, homeowners should opt for a grade 2 rating. A grade 1 rating is better suited to commercial settings, while a grade 3 rating includes a simple handle lock system.
Need Help With How To Choose a Front Door?
If you’re renovating your home and need assistance with how to choose a front door, FW&R is the professional for you.
We liaise with our clients and manufacturers to choose the best front door according to your exacting needs. After that, we then install your front door for you with unmatched expertise.
Get in touch with our team today for a free estimate on the best front door for your home.