Why hire a contractor to do something like replacing your front door when you can easily do it yourself? You’ll save time and definitely save money. But there are a few tips you’ll want to take into consideration if you’re doing it yourself.
With any DIY home project, it’s important to know the steps beforehand and make sure you’ve got a clear picture of the process before you begin. Here are some tips for you DIYers out there.
1. The Door Material Matters
The amount that you spend on your front door will determine what materials it’s made out of and whether it has a solid core or hollow core. For a front door, you’re going to want a solid core, not only for security but also because your front door is the gate to your castle. It’s there for security as much as for aesthetics and protection from the elements. A hollow core door is more flimsy and can be easily kicked in or pried apart.
Doors can be made of wood, but encased in steel (which is a great option), or you can get a solid wood door. The most common doors are wooden doors that have several wooden layers laminated together, with a wood veneer on the exterior.
Due to wood’s tendency to warp over time from weather and temperature, doors are usually made from interlocking pieces. Even “solid” wood doors are rarely made of a single slab of wood.
Another option is fibreglass. Fibreglass is a flexible yet hard material that doesn’t warp or shrink due to weather and temperature changes. They’re also relatively easy to paint, and when cared for properly, can last even longer than a wooden door. They’re also secure. Fibreglass is the perfect blend of flexibility and resistance.
Choosing the right material depends entirely on your budget and what you want out of a door. For added security and insulation, a steel-coated door or a fibreglass door are the best options, but if you’re looking for a little more price flexibility, traditional wooden doors are the best bet.
2. Energy Efficiency Should Be A Priority
Your front door is more than just a door, it’s also a barrier between the interior of your house and the outside elements. It covers a gigantic gap in the wall, and so it should be energy efficient. Energy efficiency not only makes your home “green”, but it also helps your wallet by reducing those energy costs. We all know that heating or cooling a home is no laughing matter, and something as simple as a faulty door can cause those bills to add up quickly.
Be sure the door has a tight seal, and if it has glass panes, make certain that they are energy efficient. If you start getting condensation between the glass, your door is not properly sealed. Spending some extra cash on a door that’s more energy efficient can prove to be a worthwhile investment down the road.
3. Measure Accordingly
Nothing is more important when replacing your front door than the proper measurements. Take the time to measure the old door and frame accurately. If your new door is a few inches too tall, you can always shave it down, but if it’s too short, you’ll probably need another door. Save the time, money, and trouble of going back for a new door by taking your measurements (and writing them down).
4. Choose The Right Color and Style For Your Home
Your front door says a lot about your home. It’s the first thing guests see when they are entering the home, and a well styled front door can accent your home beautifully. Colors and styles will vary, so you’ll want to make sure you’ve picked the right one for your taste.
Should the door have glass panes? Should it be solid with no glass? Does a white or black door look out of place? These are some questions to consider when you purchase your new door. Again, the material matters here as well. The material that your door is made of will determine how it looks in regards to the rest of the home.
5. Hardware Can Enhance The Door’s Appeal
Have you ever seen a brass knocker on a large, dark oak door and thought “that looks really great”? Hardware is optional but is an easy way to create a beautiful impression with your front door. Maybe you don’t want a knocker, but those brass door handles and locks would look great with your door. Locks come in all different varieties, from handle locks and deadbolts to smart locks that open with a code or other personalized entry key.
Smart locks, while a bit more pricey, are the newest trend among homeowners. They offer added security and features to the standard lock and key style locks. There are some smart locks that even allow you to open them with an app on your phone, adding an extra layer of security and peace of mind.
Whatever hardware you choose for your door, be sure it accents the door’s colours and features. You don’t want something that clashes with the colour of the door or makes your door frame look tacky.
Always Plan Ahead!
While replacing a door seems like a no-brainer, it still involves some planning and research. Decide your door’s material and colour beforehand. Take accurate measurements, and check for energy efficiency in your new door. With a little effort, the process can be relatively painless, and you’ll be on your way to a brand new look for your home.