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Front Door Opinions

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by timfromohio, Dec 11, 2007.

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  1. timfromohio

    timfromohio Minister of Fire

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    OK - we have a 1971 split level and are doing a kitchen remodel. The center level consists of a foyer, living room, and kitchen. No load bearing walls separating the areas, so we're opening the whole thing up, updating the kitchen, and installing a Napolean 1150P (my favorite part).

    My questions (will probably be one of many) involve the front door. Our contractor (good family friend, trust his advice and opinion 100%) says now is the time to replace the front door if we want to since drywall is already torn up. My wife likes a brand called Thermatrue - fiberglass doors that really look like wood. Problem is price. For the door plus sidlight is $2300! I about fell over when the lady at Lowes quoted us this. A brand new steel door with sidelight is $500.

    What do you guys think of the steel vs. fiberglass? Any other brands recommended for fiberglass doors? Are they all that costly?

    Thanks for any advice and opinions.

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  2. WILDSOURDOUGH

    WILDSOURDOUGH New Member

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    Loc:
    Unity, NH
    Front Doors can be very expensive, no doubt.

    Sorry I can't be of much help- when we started building last year (06)- we had to get 6 doors- not including the french door walkout- so we bought six steel (insulalated), six pane window doors...think they were 300/each. May not be what goes with your house or she wants.
    This discussion was posted before... think the only consensus was to steer clear of real wood on an exposed entry.
  3. timfromohio

    timfromohio Minister of Fire

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    Thanks. Our front door faces due West so it gets afternoon sun all summer. I just couldn't get over the cost for the door + sidelight. New door would look great, but might need to wait awhile!
  4. pegdot

    pegdot New Member

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    Tim, see if you can find a faux finisher in your area to paint a steel door for you. I've done several and even though wood graining isn't something I've done a lot of even I can make one look like it's made out of almost kind of wood. Believe me, there are artists out there that can pull the wood look off like you wouldn't believe. Shouldn't cost you very much especially if you can get the door to them to paint before it's hung.

    Check out this link...http://www.minwax.com/shoptalk/resources/faux-finish-2.cfm
    With some practice you might be able to do it yourself and really save some dough!
  5. tutu_sue

    tutu_sue New Member

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    I can speak having owned both kinds of doors. We just spent the money for the very same door this summer. Worth every penny and will get the tax credit for buying this year. We replaced a steel door with two sidelights. The steel door really sucked compared to the new door. The steel door radiated heat in the summer and cold in the winter. It started to rust from the bottom up. I think it was 15 years old. I cannot recommend a steel door, but I do highly recommend the fiberglass. If you go with less glass and primed with no wood grain the price will go down quite a bit. The woodgrain requires stain polyurethane which will start to look for refinish in 2 years. Paint will last a lot longer. ThermaTru is the best.
  6. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    I just installed a fiberglass entry door replacing a 1963 era site built wood front door. This is our second fiberglass door and I am a big fan. The first one was painted and no wood grain, this one has a fake wood grain that is decent and is wood colored. The new door seals very well and is not cold to the touch. We like it and it was 400$ from the HD. The door replacement can be done at any time since the casing will allow some hiding of sheetrock errors but your contractor will have more flexibility while the sheetrock is torn up.

    Steel doors can dent and rust but are usually cheaper.
  7. timfromohio

    timfromohio Minister of Fire

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    OK guys update - Lowes price for the Thermatrue door was $2300. Another local place, $1581. Big difference. I'll need to look into the tax credit. We may pull the trigger based on some of the recommendations I've read here. Thanks guys.
  8. dlpz

    dlpz New Member

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    My current job is to play devils advocate, I have a tough time not bringing my job home, $2300 is nuts, $1500 is still crazy, what is your mortgage payment? If your door is the same as your mortgage payment, its not worth it. A 400 to 600 dollar door will do what a 2300 door will do. Fiberglass door is the way to go, if that kind of money comes easy for a front door , great! But save a grand and shop around.
  9. timfromohio

    timfromohio Minister of Fire

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    Yeah, I agree - $2300 is nuts. I found the exact same door ranged in price from $1600 to $2300, just different suppliers. $1600 is still nuts IMO. I priced out a new steel door and it can be had (with a sidelight) for under $400. It's also an energy star door. Well, within the couple of days I was getting different estimates my wife looked at more catalogues and is now not sure she likes the look of the expensive door - this is good! I have suggested for now, we just paint what we have and see how happy we are with new colors - already have paint for inside of door, so get a quart for outside and be done. Less than $20, and that's for the really good paint.
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