Maybe you’ve been meaning to buy a new door for the longest time. Maybe you’re trying to get the most out of your door before it’s beyond repair. But there are symptoms up the wazoo.
The space by the door is freezing in winter and boiling in summer. The power company has ostensibly appended $50 to every energy bill for the past two years. And this door of yours is uglier than it was when you bought it.
How much does it cost to replace a front door? It depends, but we suggest investing in the best door you’ll ever have. While the best doors don’t come cheap, they’re uniquely resistant to weathering, elements and burglary in a way that allows them to endure for a lifetime.
What Factors Determine How Much Front Door Replacement Costs?
There are a couple factors, many of which apply to front doors in particular. But these same factors can potentially apply to all kinds of exterior doors. Here are some key items to consider.
The size of any door will inform cost, and size can vary, especially among entry doors. Some front doors have one or two sidelights, decorative sets of glass panes along the side of a door. Sidelights will invariably increase the price of a replacement.
A door may also have a transom above it, which is little beyond a horizontal sidelight. “Grand entries” can have fanciful transoms that require more work. From fussy ellipses to other forms of complex geometry, transoms can hike the price up a lot.
Material is also among the most important factors. Steel or fiberglass is the way to go. The 21st century is no place for a wooden door. Wood will rot. It’s only a matter of time. New materials can mimic wood well enough not to have an adverse effect on your home’s appearance. If anything, a metal door will look better because of how well it’ll maintain its integrity over the years.
While we’re on materials, the type and amount of glass in the door is equally important for determining price. Does the sidelight or transom contain a lot of glass? Is the glass stained? Is there caming that makes the stained glass more complicated? Each of these parts must be as air-tight and almost as durable as the door itself, so they’re going to affect price.
Next is the jamb. A door’s metal parts are the primary bastion against intruders and elements, alike. Big Box stores, like Lowe’s and Home Depot, provide pinewood jambs, which is the central reason why customers need new jambs in the first place! These cheap jambs inevitably rot. In a couple years, the wood’s appearance will change as it rots from the bottom up.
For jambs as well as the door itself, inorganic materials, including metal, are always better. Composite material will cost more upfront, but it’ll last for a lifetime. Relying on cheap wood, homeowners can require up to four new doors per lifetime for each exterior doorway.
For all customers, the best vendors are willing to do the best possible work on the most complex doors. Instead of relying on cheap wood that can rot, quality vendors use only composite materials so that customers won’t have to replace doors more than once. Yes, composite materials are more expensive, but we’re talking about a one-time inconvenience that’s a real investment in a permanent solution.
What Factors Determine How Much Patio Door Replacement Costs?
Patio doors exhibit different styles in that most are sliding doors that go from side to side. For sliding doors, cost depends mainly on how much of a home’s perimeter needs them. Some homes have 12ft gaps that need three panels, but most have 6ft-8ft gaps that require two panels.
As with front doors, wood isn’t your friend. Your patio door should be made from composite material or vinyl. Ultimately, wooden doors are the most expensive in the long run. Composite or vinyl sliding doors will rival the cost of wooden ones, doubling strength and lifespan.
One of the reasons sliding doors are so cheap in comparison to other patio doors is that they don’t have great security. Many have a little latch that’s easy for intruders to bypass without even breaking the door. If you lift the door up, you can get the latch on the inside to unlock. Quality vendors have locks in as many as four different places for much greater security.
The most energy-efficient options (i.e., the most air-tight ones that keep out the elements most effectively) will cost the most, but they’ll last longer. Save money on doors or save money on future energy bills.
The final factor that influences cost is whether or not your sliding doors have blinds. Nobody likes vertical blinds, but a high-quality vendor can put horizontal mini blinds on individual panes to maximize privacy.
What Factors Determine How Much Other Doors Cost?
While sliding doors are the cheapest and most popular option for exterior door installations, some prefer the functionality of other styles, like French doors and saloon doors.
French doors are almost always more expensive than sliding doors, and the material can heighten the price even more. With two entry doors, a transom and both sidelights, French doors present a more elegant option that potentially adds functionality for certain people.
But the bottom line is that the best vendors stand by sliding doors as an effective, less expensive alternative to all other patio doors.
What Makes the Best Door?
The best products begin with the longest-leading warranties and materials invulnerable to rot.
These doors should also offer comprehensive protection from burglary. If your pinewood door and jamb system emboldens potential burglars, they need only kick through a quarter inch of wood once to break the lock. Good vendors won’t leave you without steel plates for frames. To kick through a metal frame, you’d have to kick the whole side of the door in.
A truly excellent catalog will present doors in all sorts of colors, finishes and stains. There should be no-rot jambs and handles that match each door’s style and color. Whatever limitless options are available, the best vendors will also avoid outsourcing parts overseas (Your Window Solutions receives parts from Indiana).
Finally, the best vendors are masters of installing everything in their catalogs. If the person who installs your door doesn’t have the requisite certification, the manufacturer probably won’t let you cash in on the warranty. A reputable vendor will have the expertise to conduct a professional and enduring installation for any door in its catalog.
When Should I Replace My Door?
To have the most profound effect on curb appeal, many customers replace doors and windows simultaneously. If you’re wondering about when to replace a door to your home, the biggest tell is when your door can’t seal drafts outside.
Old doors may also be out-of-square. If the bottom of the door is soft to the touch or displays any sign of weathering, it has begun to rot.
Others replace their door because it’s ugly. Enough curb appeal can increase the value of your property, so one can hardly call the issue, “cosmetic.” But don’t wait until you’re about to sell your home. The best time to get a door is while you live in your house! You might as well enjoy the benefits.
From an initial contract to a job’s completion, the length of the process depends on the complexity of your custom door. The post-Covid commercial climate has also caused these sorts of processes to require more time and money than usual.
Even Big Box companies can take two months unless you’ve grabbed a door from their shelves yourself. Shipping can take 4-12 weeks, but installation should take no more than a day.
Installation is a key part of the door creation process. Without a certified installer, you won’t enjoy your warranty, and without a generally skillful installer, you won’t even enjoy good work.
Whereas Big Box stores depend on random subcontractors, premium vendors pay much closer attention to their more direct hires. If you work with a specialized vendor, you’re much more likely to work with an installer who’s getting paid to perform nothing other than an excellent job.
Trustworthy, handpicked labor doesn’t come cheap, but again, we’re talking about a lifetime investment. To attract the best installers in the industry, specialized vendors pay more to their workers.
When it comes to door renovation specialists, you get what you pay for on all fronts, from initial design to ultimate installation. With the right products and the right company, a great door is totally worth it.
By as much as 50%-75%, Covid has increased prices across the home renovation industry. Not a single part is as cheap as it was years ago. $600 windows have become $900 windows, and further labor expenses can cause those windows to cost as many as $1400 each.
Of course, home renovation is far from the only industry that’s suffered as a result of Covid. The point is that the next best time to schedule an order for a new door is now. Prices have gone up in heartbeats, so you could easily save hundreds of dollars by fixing your door as soon as possible.
Gas prices are a popular grievance, but the cost of goods and materials rises no less quickly. Old prices aren’t coming back.
How Can I Find a Door That Best Complements My Home?
Because an entryway is such a focal point for curb appeal, having it blend into the rest of the home isn’t the goal. It’s your home’s face: It complements the home, but it can have plenty of its own eccentricities.
A lime door can be a great fit for a tan house, and a red door can be a great fit for a white house. Having a unique door is part of making a home your own. If you’re going to invest in a door that lasts a lifetime, let it stand out!
Does Homeowner’s Insurance Cover Doors?
A broken door is sort of like rear-ending someone in the sense that you’re almost always at-fault. Many entry doors enjoy shelter in the form of a porch or awning, so they’re not likely to receive direct damage from anything other than a burglar. An insurance company would pay for a door that’s been decimated by a hailstorm, but that situation is highly unlikely.
Homeowners almost always pay for doors out-of-pocket. If you buy a door that’s capable of rotting in the first place, you refuse to maintain it, and water can penetrate it, you have a responsibility to go out and get a new one. Even a $10,000 replacement would be cheaper than letting your home receive more water damage. Having a rotten door is like not having a door at all.
Where Can I Find the Best Doors?
Stop drafts in their tracks by investing in replacement doors. Better yet, get a door that heightens curb appeal as effectively as it lowers energy bills. Studies have demonstrated that a home’s value can owe a $15,000 increase to a beautiful front door. Pay for the best door now, or pay for a bad door over and over again.
Your Window Solutions is among the best door renovators serving Chicagoland residents. We understand the quality of your doors says a lot about your home. That’s why our colorful catalog contains options that prioritize durability, security, beauty and energy efficiency. If you’re ready for some of the nation’s best door specialists to install your next front door, please email us, call us or fill an online form.