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There are some wonderful fiberglass entry doors on the market these days, and many of them bear such close resemblance to wood that you can hardly tell the difference! They even sound the same when you shut them and, to top it all, you get the added benefits of fiberglass. When choosing this option for your home, there are a few important points that you need to consider prior to installation.
How tough are these doors?
There are a number of types of fiberglass, and some have proven admittedly inferior in the past. The type of fiberglass used in door designs is also used in surfboards, planes, and other similar uses. This durable type of fiberglass resists swelling, rotting, shrinking, and warping. It's also quite resistant to fire which is an added plus.
Slab or prehung?
The advantage of choosing a prehung door is that it is already hinged, has weatherstripping, and it also has a threshold. When you choose this option, you might need to make some changes or adjustments to make the door fit properly. If you order the slab, you will receive a door that still requires hinge fitting and needs to be hung on the existing jamb. When ordering a slab, you need to measure your door jamb perfectly in order to ensure a perfect fit.
Price and durability
Some of the basic door designs won't cost you an arm and a leg. That said, the more complex designs are understandably more expensive. In terms of durability, the door itself can last a lifetime. If any parts of the door are made of glass, these portions are somewhat more susceptible to damage for obvious reasons, but they can be replaced if need be.
Fiberglass doors are made up of two pieces of fiberglass with a firm foam in the middle. The foam adds stability and improves insulation. The inner frame is usually made of wood or other composite materials.
Fiberglass is known for being one of the most stable and durable materials around. It's not likely to warp or suffer other effects of exposure to the elements. They are energy efficient and require minimal to no maintenance! You don't even need to worry about the winter and summer temperature variations affecting this kind of door. Less contracting and expanding means that your door will hold up very well in terms of wear and tear.
If you order the slab variety, you might need to make modifications. Some doors cannot be modified or trimmed, so it's important to determine this before placing your order. While fiberglass is not prone to denting, the top layers may crack if they are accidentally struck with enough force. Delamination can occur in some cases. If the door absorbs water, they can also rot, and the skin will peel away from the frame. That said, proper maintenance can prevent this kind of damage. While wood gives you a unique look, this is not the case when it comes to fiberglass but, that said, there are some great designs and colors out there!
Which finish to choose?
Homeowners can choose from several colors, and you can even request a door that has nothing but primer applied. This way, you can apply your own coat of high-quality paint to achieve the desired look. If you want a wood finish, you can ask your vendor about a finish that resembles your favorite type of wood. If you want to stain the door yourself, your vendor should provide you with a stain kit. Remember to only use products approved by the door vendor or they could result in unnecessary damage.
Compared to other doors
Other entry door options include stainless steel and wood. Wood is known for being more expensive and susceptible to wear and tear as a result of weather exposure. Stainless steel is favored for security reasons, but they don't offer the best insulation, and they too can be rather expensive.
At NorthShield Windows and Doors, we have a wide variety of entry doors. Take a look at our fiberglass selection and contact our team at Winnipeg (204) 272-3725 / Toronto (905) 326-3444 for expert advice and a free in-house quote!