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How to Choose an Exterior Door: Your Guide to Finding the Right Fit

How to Choose an Exterior Door: Your Guide to Finding the Right Fit

So you’ve decided to take the plunge and purchase a new exterior door for your home — congratulations! Unfortunately, the hard decisions are only just beginning. Choosing the right exterior door takes thoughtful consideration, and we’re here to walk you through the process. 

cream brick exterior with sage green front door

Here’s what you should keep in mind when choosing your exterior door:

What current concerns do you have about your existing door?

Is the door warped? Does it not close properly? Do you just not like the color, or are there deeper issues happening? Does the door take a regular beating from inclement weather, or is it partially protected under an overhang? Asking yourself these types of questions can help you zero-in on what you’re hoping to achieve with a new door, and hopefully make your choice a bit easier. 

Are there any special considerations?

Perhaps your exterior door gets a full blast of afternoon sun and you want to do what you can to keep the heat out. In that case, you’d likely want to skip the clear glass panels. Is your current door frame rotting? You’ll need to address that before you install your new door or you won’t be satisfied with the outcome. These situations are nuanced, because every home is different. Give it some thought from a practical perspective before you commit to a certain aesthetic.

white exterior home with double french doors

What’s the existing style of your home? 

Now comes the fun part — finding your favorite style! Of course, the first step is to think about your home's existing architectural style. While you can certainly juxtapose a more modern door with a classic build, you want to stick with complementary styles. Does your home fall into the colonial camp, or is it more New England style? Contemporary or coastal? Put on your designer cap and think about what would look best with what you already have going on with your home’s shape, shutters, and porches. 

Quality counts.

Exterior doors are the first line of defense against intruders, bad weather, and more. With such an important job to do, your door — especially your front door — is not the place to skimp on quality. Carefully consider the durability of the material with higher regard than its price point, and understand that your door a long-term investment. Additionally, don’t forget to check out the quality of the weatherstripping system, as this component is crucial to keeping out bugs, water, and air. 

Luckily, you don’t have to choose between high quality and affordable prices. Our exterior doors use the best materials and won’t break the bank, and there’s something suited to whatever your specific goals and needs are. Peruse all of our exterior doors now to find what you’re looking for!
  • Door Man
3 Ways to Enhance French Door Security 

3 Ways to Enhance French Door Security 

French doors are loved for the light and openness they bring to a room or space. With a built-in window to the outside world, you can effortlessly incorporate nature and greenery into your home. However, that openness can seem a little too inviting to some homeowners. They ask: Is a French door really secure as a front or back door? The answer is yes!
  • Door Man
How Much Room Do You Need for a Barn Door?

How Much Room Do You Need for a Barn Door?

So you’ve fallen in love with the industrial charm of the sliding barn door — but do you have enough room? Barn doors are beloved for their space-saving design and pop of rustic style, and can be a creative solution to the limitations of swinging doors. Before you pull the trigger and bust out the screwdriver, check out our top tips for making sure your space is a good fit!

Tip #1: Consider how much space you need for the door to slide open. 

Make sure you have enough wall for this project! Typically, you need the door to slide at LEAST as far as the door opening in one direction; in reality, most people prefer that the sliding door overlaps the door opening by two inches so that it really looks closed. Of course, you need to think about the opposite side, too — don’t forget to leave enough room for all the hardware to fit.

Tip #2: Make sure there's nothing in its path.

Sliding barn doors are a great choice for many people because of their slim, compact package in tight spaces. Even though they are relatively unobtrusive, sliding barn doors still need to be clear of desks, chairs, and other objects so that they can open and close properly. Keep a sharp eye out for sconces, paintings, vents, and light switches while you measure! You don’t want anything that might block or scratch the door every time you slide it open.

Tip #3: Think about the height. 

Unlike a pocket door that is installed directly into the doorframe, our sliding barn doors are suspended from hardware at the top. That means you need to make sure you have space above the doorway to install that hardware (but this usually isn’t an issue — it generally goes right above the frame). In addition to your door's width reaching about two inches wider than the actual door opening, you’ll want the top of your sliding barn door to reach about one inch higher than the dimensions of your doorway. Ultimately, it’s up to you how much overlap you want in any direction, but you want it to be enough that you get the sense of privacy and true division between your spaces. 

From hiding the pantry to dividing the dining room or closing off closet chaos, barn doors can add incredible functionality and style to a room. Find the right height, width, and style for your sliding barn door. Shop the range now!
  • Gild Group
4 Common Reasons Why Your Door is Sticking, And What You Can Do to Fix It

4 Common Reasons Why Your Door is Sticking, And What You Can Do to Fix It

Do you find yourself having to give your door a solid yank in order to open it? There are many reasons why your door might be sticking — some are easy fixes (that’s the good news!) and others are a bit more extensive. Ahead, we’re diving into common issues that cause doors to stick, and what you can do to fix the problem.  

Is it improper installation?

One of the most common reasons a door doesn’t open and close properly is also one of the most obvious: It wasn’t installed correctly. Installing a door is actually very precise work, and a small error can cause major sticking down the road. 

The fix: In most instances, simply re-installing the door with more precision in your measurements will stop the sticking.


How about that humidity? 

Temperature and weather play a bigger role in sticking doors than most people realize. Doors can expand and contract based on the conditions, especially if you live in a humid climate. The moisture in the air is what causes wooden doors to swell, and exterior doors are most likely to fall prey to this since they are more exposed. 

The fix: One trick for swollen doors is to take the door off the frame and sand the edge of the door all around. Don’t fly blind here — it’s important you know what you’re doing (or are willing to pay someone who is!) so that you don’t end up with a big gap in the door with air leaking in and out. 


Do you have sagging door hinges?

Sometimes, the sticking door isn’t really the door at all, but the hinges. Your hinges may have been unevenly or improperly installed, but more likely, screws have become loosened as a result of use. (This is especially true if you have kids who love to hang on door handles!) 

The fix: Glance at your hinges. They may be caked with dirt or grime that’s impacting the stickiness. If they look like they are in good condition and only the screws are loose, all you need to do is screw them tightly in place. Then, your lopsided door should be squared away.  


Is it good ol’ overuse?

Wear and tear tends to happen over time, no matter what precautions you put in place. If you have an old door, the reason for your sticking may just be the result of time. 

The fix: Replace your door! Make sure you measure and install the door properly to get the most bang for your buck, and hopefully you’ll be able to avoid any of the abovementioned sticking issues.


Time for an upgrade? Shop our range of doors now.
  • Gild Group
6 Signs It’s Time to Replace Your Door Locks

6 Signs It’s Time to Replace Your Door Locks

Your exterior doors are your first line of defense against the outside world, and solid door locks help keep your home, loved ones, and belongings safe. For style, security, and practicality, it’s important to make sure your home’s door locks are in great shape. Here are a few red flags to look out for when determining if it’s time to replace your locks.

1.) If you just bought a new house.

Now that you’ve found a new place to call home, it’s a smart idea to get new locks on your door. Even if you know and trust the previous homeowner, you never know what friend, contractor, babysitter, or relative has received a copy of the key. Sadly, 6-7% of unlawful entry is committed by someone who has a key to your home. Whether you’ve moved into a new condo, apartment, or house, it’s better to play it safe and start fresh with new locks.

2.) If your locks or door are old.

The truth is, door locks are not designed to last the entire lifetime of the actual door. If your lock has been on your door more than a decade, it’s definitely time to consider a replacement. The quality of the manufacturing does make a difference in longevity, but all in all, even the highest quality door lock is going to need replacing at about seven to 10 years old. 

3.) If your door is difficult to unlock.

Do you find yourself leaning heavily into the door, jiggling the key, or maneuvering front to back? These are not signs just of a “quirk,” but of a defective lock. Again, older locks tend to show their age by becoming finicky and tricky to use. If that’s the case for you, it’s time to replace. 

4.) If you’ve been the victim of home intrusion.

Unfortunately, burglary is a reality we face. The worst part is that studies show that a large number of burglars walk right through the unlocked door! Locks don’t work unless you use them. If your home has ever been broken into, it’s likely that your locks were tampered with. Some locksmiths may be able to set you up with a burglary repair service, but you likely need to fully replace the lock.

5.) If your locks show visible rust.

This tell-tale sign of old age means it’s time for an upgrade. It might not seem that bad now, but rust can wreak havoc on the mechanisms in your locks over time. Before it’s too late and your locks are rendered completely useless, better go and update!

6.) If they simply don’t match anymore.

This one may have more to do with curb appeal than functionality, but it’s still a valid consideration. Your front door may have been put in when the home was built, but since then, there have likely been a number of cosmetic updates done to the house. If that’s the case, the handleset and lock may just look a little outdated and out of place. 

Luckily, changing out your home’s hardware doesn’t have to be a huge undertaking. In fact, with just this small change you can make a big impact on style and functionality. Whether you want to go for a traditional handleset, a simple leverset, or a high-tech keypad, we have lots of options to suit your style. Shop the collection now!
  • Gild Group
Pocket Doors vs. Barn Doors: Pros and Cons of Each

Pocket Doors vs. Barn Doors: Pros and Cons of Each

When it comes to sliding doors, choosing the right one can feel like a huge, overwhelming decision. Both pocket doors and barn doors are designed to be space-savers, and both are ideal for rooms like closets or dining rooms because they don’t swing out when opened. But which one is right for you? Consider these four things when making your choice:


Ease of Installation 

Of the two options, pocket doors are generally more difficult to install simply because they require a wall to be thick enough for things to be done properly. With a pocket door, you’re cutting into the actual wall to make room for the door. Conversely, a barn door pops on the outside of your wall and is comparatively easy to install. Your specific wall may answer this piece of the puzzle for you. 


Your Specific Space

Pocket doors do not take up any space or block furniture when they are open — and the same can’t be said about barn doors. Although they are almost flush with the wall, barn doors don’t disappear in the same way that pocket doors do. If you want a sitting chair and lamp tucked back in the corner, for example, a barn door may require you scoot them out further away from the wall so that they don’t get hit. In fact, you probably won’t want anything at all to block the door so that you can easily reach over to open and close it without hitting anything. Keep in mind your light switches, outlets and pictures that might conflict with a barn door when you assess your space. 


Consider Cost

When it comes to the actual doors, pocket doors and barn doors are in the same neighborhood price-wise. However, the installation process is where costs start to diverge. As previously mentioned, barn doors are relatively easy to install, and therefore the total costs stay low. A more involved, professionally installed pocket door that requires cutting into the wall can start to escalate the budget quickly. Your price will vary based on how much construction is required, but price is a factor to consider when choosing between the two.


Personal Style 

This is the component that no pro/con list on the internet can sort out for you! You have to decide what style suits you best. Designers often love a pocket door because of its clean lines and tidy, hidden feel, but a barn door can be a real knockout feature in a room. The decision ultimately comes down to your personal preference and what will work in your space.


Leaning toward a pocket door? Our Pocket Door Kits make installation as smooth as possible. Are barn doors more your speed? We have over 20 unique styles waiting to make a statement in your home. Find your favorite now!
  • Gild Group

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