In addition to windows, replacing doors is one of the best ways to spend money on your home. New doors can add value to your home, increase curb appeal, and saves you financially on heating and cooling costs.
More importantly, doors provide necessary security and, in turn, make your home comfortable for you to live in.
Choosing the right door can be an overwhelming process. To help, here are answers to the top five question you may have regarding replacing doors.
1. When should doors be replaced?
Over time, a number of factors can make it necessary for you to replace exterior doors:
- constant wear and tear
- loss of energy efficiency
- worn stripping
- weather exposure
- warped frames and hinges
- the need for greater security
Plan to take an assessment of your home and these factors at least twice a year, particularly after an intense change of weather such as after the winter or summer months. If you don’t need to replace, but want to change the look of your home to update your curb appeal, consider apply a fresh coat of paint in a vibrant colour.
2. Should I have an energy audit?
Yes, you should have an energy audit of your home.
An energy audit can help you find areas in your home where you can improve efficiency. Since door drafts are huge energy wasters that inflate your monthly bills, an energy audit suggests that a door replacement can help start saving you as soon as the work is completed.
3. How can I determine the best door for my home?
Style and design are often at the top of the list when a customer wants to determine the best door for their home. However, safety and security are the main concern when selecting your new door.
All exterior doors need to be solid and kick-proof so you want a solid wood door, or at the very least a door with a solid-wood core. Other options are fiberglass or metal. If you choose a metal door, make sure that it has interior reinforcement and a lock block, to prevent a thief from bending it open with a car jack. Reinforced steel doors are your sturdiest option, but they also require extra maintenance to prevent rust.
Doors with windows are beautiful and let in much-need light, but are also a security risk. If you do fall in love with a glass door, choose reinforced glass, and consider adding decorative bars or metal reinforcement. And if it doesn’t break local fire codes, you should also install a secondary door lock at floor level – far away from a burglar’s reach.
4. What type of warranty should I expect?
Before you consider the warranty, make sure you are working with a reputable company for replacing your doors. Consider their warranty and insurance policies as a part of your research when making your decision on who to hire.
Most warranties cover installation, workmanship, and replacement materials. The time-frame of the warranty may vary by contractor so include this question in your consultations. And remember to get your warranty in writing!
5. How much can I expect to pay?
The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation suggests that “the cost of the renovation work will depend on the condition of the existing windows and doors, local labour and material costs and the extent of the work to be done. The cost of doors and windows varies widely.”
At HomeStars, our review data tells us that Canadians on average spend about $7,500 on window and door replacement when they undertake this kind of work.
The CMHC suggests creating a budget checklist that will help you understand what your average cost will be. Elements can include:
- Design changes
- Structural considerations
- Components and hardware
- Moisture damage and deteriorated finishes
- Heating and ventilation
- Permit and inspection costs
- Waste disposal
Replacing your doors is a significant undertaking. Make sure you research home professionals in your area before you hire and do consider leaving a review when your project is done. It helps the whole community!