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March 11, 2014

When replacing your Front Entry door, there are a lot of options (and a lot of price points) to consider. Without turning this blog entry into a technical manual for front entry doors, here are some things to think about when choosing one.


Most front entry doors are made of steel, fiberglass, or wood. Each has it’s pros and cons. Steel doors are the most common seen in homes, because they are often the least expensive. They are a fairly low maintenance door but their biggest drawback is in their durability. You might think that, being made of steel, they would hold up as well as, or better than the other type of doors, but they are prone to dents and dings. As well, any scratches in the finish have a tendency to rust if not repaired and repainted in a timely fashion.

Fiberglass doors are a lot more weather resistant than steel doors, but they are more expensive. These doors either can either come in a smooth finish or can simulate the look of wood. At one time, the simulated wood look was not very convincing, but the technology has improved such that these doors are very convincing at looking like the real deal. Overall, they are a practical door that would suit any home’s front entry. They can crack if you strike them very hard, but chances are a burglar would break the door jam before breaking the door with a heavy strike.

Solid wood doors look great and wear really well. It`s a lot harder to damage a solid wood door than the other two kinds, and if you do, things like scratches are easier to repair. They are however, more expensive than steel or fiberglass doors. In addition, they require more upkeep. Painting or varnishing is needed to keep the door looking new.

Energy Efficiency

The material that the door is made of does not necessarily relate to its ability to keep the temperature at bay. More importantly, the quality of the door seal helps to keep the transference of heat and cold at bay. Higher quality doors will often incorporate features that help keep a good seal when the door is closed. As I’ve pointed out in other blogs I’ve written about energy efficiency, a 1/16 inch gap at the bottom of a window or door can really reduce its energy efficiency. As well, the guts of the door can help determine how efficiently the door performs. Is the door filled with foam insulation or some of kind of heat loss barrier? Or is it empty?


The biggest factor in how your door performs actually lies with the door jam, or the frame around the door. This is because it often breaks long before the door itself gets damaged. To combat this, higher end doors can include multi-point lock systems, extra shoring around the lock mechanism itself, and higher quality deadbolts. No entry door is completely unbreakable, but these features can help prevent someone easily breaking into your home.


The sky is the limit when it comes to style options for your front entry door. Sidelights, decorative glass, and different finishes can all add to the look of your front entry door (and they can all add to the price too). Hardware on your door can also give your door a traditional or modern look, depending on what you choose and either of them have price points from low to high.


When choosing a door for home, remember that the price of the door doesn’t reflect the final cost. There is, of course, a cost associated with installation. This cost depends a lot on what needs to happen to get the door to fit in the opening. If you chose to put in different sized door, additional framing and finishing might need to happen to complete the project, which could add to the cost. And, just because you picked out an inexpensive door from your local big box retailer doesn’t mean that installation cost will be lower. Everything being equal and without any hiccups, it takes same number of hours to install an inexpensive door as it does to install an expensive one.

If you want to view other blog posts from Robert & Michael at Nord Alta Construction, visit our blog on our site by clicking here.

If you’re in Edmonton, St. Albert, Sherwood Park, or the surrounding area and are looking for a contractor for you renovation project, visit our website at to find information on how to contact us. We’d be happy to speak to you about what we can do to get the ball rolling on your next home or office project. You can also leave comments with us at

Michael Breault is a project coordinator for Nord Alta Construction. You can find the company website at You can also find Michael and Nord Atla Construction on facebook at, on twitter at, and on LinkedIn.

Robert Breault is the president and owner of Nord Alta Construction. You can find the company website at You can also find Robert and Nord Alta Construction on facebook at and on LinkedIn.