Buying an Entry Door
Our Most Frequently Asked Questions and Important Decisions To Consider
Take a minute to become a door pro and save yourself time, money, and confusion. As always, our knowledgeable staff is available by email, phone, and live chat for immediate assistance.
Your Entry Door Pre-Purchase Checklist
All Steps to Find the Following items on the Checklist can be conveniently found further down the page.
___ Door unit size (width x height)
___ Rough opening size (width x height)
___ Brick molding clearances between exterior surfaces (width x height)
___ Door swing determination (left-swing or right-swing, in-swing or out-swing)
___ Door swing path clearances over floor and below ceiling
___ Unit width determined
___ Type of door construction needed relative to weather exposure
___ Hardware material choice
___ Regulatory codes determined, if applicable
We are pleased to tell you that ProductsDirect.com has recently added fiberglass entry doors to our product line. We have been seling interior and exterior wood and fiberglass doors in our retail operations for fifteen years. Initially we are offering our beautiful line of private label fiberglass entry door units with and without sidelites to fit every decorating style. In beautiful wood look finishes, from light oak to dark walnut and mahogany, this line of entry doors offer excellent quality, warranty, and value. We carry many styles in-stock can ship anywhere in the continental US within a few days. Some colors, and custom or special order sizes are available as well. $50 shipping for the first two doors, and free shipping on additional doors purchased with the same order.
The right entrance door will significantly enhance the beauty and value of your home; but, purchasing doors can be a challenging experience. With the proper planning you can order an entrance door with absolute confidence. Products Direct will use our experience to help make your door purchase experience trouble free and correct every time!
–Tim Boyd, CEO/Founder
Possible Door Configurations:
Single Door Configurations
Double Door Configurations
Entry Door Pre-purchase Checklist
New Construction or Remodeling?
Most contractors agree that new construction is usually easier and less problematic than remodeling. If it is new construction you may be better served to have the door on the job site prior to framing up the wall. This will assist in avoiding many issues including door unit size versus rough opening, exterior trimming, wall thickness versus door jamb thickness, etc. When remodeling, you certainly must take even more care when ordering a door.
Things to Consider
Door size and rough opening size
When buying a door you must consider not only the door width but also the frame thickness. A general guideline is that the opening in the wall will require an additional 2 inches more horizontally than the door size. For example, if you are installing a 36” standard size door you will need an opening of 38” x 83”. Special door sizes, including taller doors are available, to some extent.
This is another critical concern. Walls are not always of the same thickness. The majority of home construction in the United States is set up for 2 by 4 studs plus drywall. Entrance door jambs for this construction are typically 4 ½” wide. Wider jambs are available and can be made to order.
Trimwork, Mouldings, Exterior Construction
Obviously, you will need to trim out your door both on the inside and outside. Our doors are manufactured and shipped with WM180 brick moulding which can be easily removed and modified slightly if needed. The interior trim “casing” is not included as this is usually matched on site with other interior trim work. You will want to take into account your exterior construction and pre-plan how you will fit and trim your door to match your exterior. In remodeling, for example, masonry of any type that is already in place may limit your brick mould sizes and thus impact the size of your door. Vinyl or wood exteriors may allow more flexibility in trimming the exterior of your door frame. You cannot assume that if the door frame will fit, the moulding will also fit without modification. You may have to measure first to fit your moulding to the existing exterior (especially masonry) and then deal with the rough opening and door unit size. The plan being you must fit the brick mould to the exterior properly first, as you have less options there. Then the interior side can be filled as needed and interior trim added.
>Before ordering a door, determine the direction your door should swing: Is it an in-swing or out-swing; and, does it swing left or right. Sounds complicated? Products Direct wants to make it easier, and if this page doesn't help, feel free to reach out by chat, email or phone. Our experienced team will walk you through the process.
First, almost all residential doors swing inward into the home. This means they are “in-swing doors”. Doors are available that swing out, “out-swing,” but these are used more in commercial applications. Products Direct stocks and sells in-swing residential exterior doors. We can provide you with out-swing exterior doors; but, these are built to order and delivery times will vary.
To determine whether your door should swing left or right:
Consider the traffic direction upon entering, light switch placement, furniture placement, general room layout, conflict with other doors, etc. For example, you would not want to cover a light switch because the door swings back over it.
Determining left-swing or right-swing:
Stand in the door opening and place your back where the hinge will be. When the door is opened, if it is/will be to your left it is/will be a left-swing(ing) door. If the door is/will be on your right, it is/will be a right-swing door.
Another issue that may occur is door swing path obstruction
This is a problem involving a floor that is higher than the swing path of the door as it opens. It occurs usually in remodeling projects where the flooring height has increased due to changes in the flooring, and thus impacting the door's ability to freely swing open. Occasionally we hear of issues involving low ceiling heights; but, this rarely occurs. It may be factor in older homes or in some mobile homes. These types of issues may require a specially made door. Please contact us if you run into any of these types of issues. We are here to help.
Door Construction and Exposure to Elements
Exposure to weather and direct sunlight must be taken into consideration. Ideally, should your door be of wood construction, it should be sheltered from rain and snow. If not, you might consider purchasing a steel-clad or fiberglass door.
Regulations may require that your door meet certain codes such as fire ratings or hurricane ratings. Accessibility regulations for individuals with special needs may also exist. Regulations vary according to location and should be reviewed before placing an order.
You will need to determine what material locksets you will install on your door, and specify hinge and threshold materials that will match your caming and interior décor objectives. Some options include brass, patina, chrome, brushed nickel, oil rubbed bronze, etc.
How Are Doors Sold?
A prehung door includes hinges, trim, the door Jamb framework, and is ready to be installed.
Slabs are shipped without the frame. You may find these attractively priced elsewhere, but the installation can be complicated and costly. ProductsDirect.com currently only offers ready to install, prehung doors.
Aesthetic Considerations: Exterior Door Buying Guide
Curb appeal is made easy with the right front door. A representation of the life inside a home can often be defined by its entrance. But it's not just about form, a functional font door must also protect the lives within. For a door to function at its best, it must be made using tested processes from quality materials to ensure the homeowner is always protected. The factors that determine a door's life are numerous. A door that can withstand harsh environmental conditions and use will enable your purchase to last year after year.
Entry Doors: Types, Styles, & Materials
No matter the style of your home, from classical to modern, the selection of doors at Products Direct provide you with all of the options you need to compliment your home.
The front door of a single home on a street can affect the presence of the entire block. Make your home Stand Out by Defining the Character of Your Home.
Wood is a traditional choice for homeowners who want a Custom Design with Custom Variations like glass, unrestricted color palette, and various glass options, should you chose to incorporate them. Wood doors are constructed using a method that makes them capable of dealing with weather conditions that will cause wood to warp. The density of wood also gives homeowners A True Sense of Security. Wood doors can harmonize with most home styles, but they are integrated into tradition home design best.
Types/Styles of Doors
- French Doors
- Pocket Doors
- Interior Hinge Doors
- Hollow Core
- Solid Core
- Other Composites
- French Doors
- Storm Doors
Common Reasons to Consider a New Door
- Add value and character to your home
- Increase home security
- Existing door warp causing high energy prices in winter and summer
- Increase energy efficiency by insulating the home at one of the most troublesome areas
- Compliment new renovations