When choosing a new exterior door for your home, there are a lot of things to consider. As the first thing people see when visiting your home, entry doors should not only be durable, but aesthetically pleasing as well. Here’s what you need to know if you’re deciding between wood or steel exterior doors.
Durability & Security
Entry doors need to be tough in order to withstand wind, rain, sun, and of course — intruders. Steel is one of the most durable and weather-resistant door materials available. Wood doors can scratch, peel, bubble, rot, and warp because of extreme temperatures or water. In contrast, steel entry doors are designed to resist the elements to maintain their shape and strength. Those that have undergone galvanization provide extra resistance to cracking, bowing, and rust. Their resistance to warping adds to their security; heavy duty steel doors are difficult to manipulate and open when they’re locked, making them one of the most secure type of doors.
Although steel is more durable, many wooden doors are made with wood-veneer skins over an engineered-wood core, which minimizes the door’s vulnerability to warping. However, neither door type is indestructible — when choosing a replacement door system, be sure to choose a manufacturer such as Centennial Windows & Doors that offers a lifetime warranty so any damage is repaired at no cost to you.
A common reason for replacing an exterior door is energy efficiency. Those that aren’t properly aligned or damaged can make your energy bills skyrocket. In the case of wooden doors, water can seep into the joints, which loosens them and allows air to flow through, contributing to poor energy efficiency. If you’re choosing wooden doors, make sure to opt for those that are made with a water-barrier construction that helps water run off the door without entering joints. While steel is a conductor of heat, modern manufacturers take this into account to make energy efficient steel doors. Premium steel entry doors are constructed with an improved insulated core, a wooden frame that holds insulation, and coated with galvanized steel — this keeps your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter. When shopping for replacement doors, make sure to look for the ENERGY STAR® certification to ensure you’re buying the most energy efficient doors.
Aesthetics & Cost
From traditional to contemporary, both wooden and steel doors offer design versatility to suit the look of your home. Wood is a warm, natural, and inviting material, and these exterior doors come in a range of wood types, including maple, walnut, oak, mahogany, cherry, and more. They can also be customized with embellishments and carvings.
With the right exterior door manufacturer, you can customize your steel door to be the size, colour, style, and design you want. You can also add glass panels to your door system to make it even more unique. Though usually available in a smooth finish, steel doors can be embossed with a wood-grain pattern, painted in the colour of your choice, and typically have a paneled design that mimics wood styles.
Solid wood is usually the most expensive option for an entry door, while steel makes for an affordable exterior door option. Prices vary depending on where you purchase from, but they are typically less expensive than wooden doors.
There are many sites that make it easy to directly compare home products. For example, this site in particular offers direct comparisons and reviews of the best water dispenser for your home, and includes reviews from real home owners. By searching online for product review sites, you can quickly confirm your instincts and double check if you are buying the correct products.
Whatever exterior door material you choose, make sure you purchase and install from a reliable company who can meet with you to evaluate which type is best for you.