The 2015 Cost vs. Value report from Remodeling Magazine lists the recoup values for a fiberglass door replacement at 72% and a steel door replacement at 101.8%, respectively. And for good reason: Entry doors have a high value because they can affect the impressions guests get of our home and, by extension, of who we are. It’s human nature to want to be liked – even admired – by others, so it’s important that our homes look warm and welcoming to people whose opinions we value. Our entry doors play a major role in making people feel comfortable; old, ugly, peeling, or worn doors just don’t make for a good first impression. Besides, doors that are just crying out for a replacement are both inefficient and risky, opening your home to potential damage from the elements, energy loss, and decreased overall comfort, to name a few things.
But how do you tell when, exactly, you need to get your door replaced? Check for these warning signs.
- Issues with opening and closing. When a door’s opening and closing functions are hampered by rusty old mechanisms, they can cause your door to get stuck. In some cases, this can be fixed by a minor adjustment. But if the issue is caused by warping, your door should be replaced. Especially common among wood core doors, warping can lead to air leakage or unwanted heat transfer. Plus it detracts from the beauty of the home.
- Physical signs of damage. Entry doors are exposed to the elements day in and day out, and they may wear over time. Dents, rust, and cracks look innocent enough, but when left untreated, they can lead to structural failure. They also reduce your home’s protection from the weather, negatively affect curb appeal, and lose you a lot of potential for savings on your utility bill.
- Broken components. Your entry doors are not only composed of the two (or more) main panels; they also feature accessories that contribute to their overall functionality. Broken or malfunctioning jambs, threshold, or frames have a negative impact on the performance of the doors. Check for signs of warping and rotting, especially if you live in a hot region.
If you ticked off any of the above signs, call a professional installer or contractor. The question is: which doors should you invest in? We’ll go through your options in the second installment of this blog series.