Adding a Storm Door to Your Home - It's Now Even Easier

A new storm door is a quick and affordable way to add value, functionality and beauty to your home. In fact, it's a wise investment for many reasons. A storm door ensures your home makes the perfect first impression every time, protects your exterior door from the elements, and adds another barrier of protection, keeping your home warm and energy-efficient.

When Should You Add or Replace a Storm Door?

Storm doors have a lot of benefits, but do you really need one? Well, that depends. Does the entry door let air past it? Do you want to bring more fresh air and light into the room? Does your current fall short when it should make a statement? If so, then yes. A storm door would be a wise investment.

If you already have a storm door, is it doing what it should? Is it difficult to open and close, or letting air leak past? How does it look? Is it showing wear and tear? Is it in good condition, or is it warped? Are the hinges no longer working smoothly? If you say yes to any of these questions, it's time to replace your storm door. You'll love the added energy-efficiency, as well as the great new look and lower maintenance.

How to Measure Your Home for a Storm Door

To find out what size of a storm door you'll need, make sure you measure between the exterior brick mold trim pieces instead of the inner door jamb. (The brick mold is the external casing around the door. The jamb is the vertical piece that frames the outer edges of the door.) Start with the width, measuring across the top, middle and bottom, using the smallest of the three measurements as your width. Next, measure the height of the space, using the center of the opening.

You'll find that most homes will take a standard size of 32 inches by 81 inches, or 36 inches by 81 inches, but you can order custom sizes to fit a number of different openings.

Choosing Your Storm Door

Storm doors come in a number of different styles and colors. In fact, many companies will even allow you to custom design your own storm door by choosing the color, glass, and handle preferences, as well as the style. And there are a number of styles to choose from:

Full views -- Have the most glass and allow for the maximum amount of light and air.

Mid views -- Contain slightly less glass than full view storm doors, but more than halfway.

High views -- Half door frame and half glass, high views provide the maximum amount of privacy while still allowing light and air in. High and mid view doors are ideal for entryways that get a lot of traffic.

Ventilation -- These come in a range of different styles.

Interchangeable full views -- If you'd like a bit more flexibility, this style just might be the way to go. This style features full glass, but they can be switched to a full insect screen for ventilation, still letting you bring plenty of light and air into the space.

Energy-efficiency should be another consideration when choosing a storm door. Many of them will overlap the frame with weather stripping for a tight seal, preventing air from leaking past. And for style, hardware and handles come in a range of styles and materials, including brass and pewter. Then, there are numerous accents you can choose from to beautify your home.

Bonus Tips for Buying a Storm Door

Because storm doors have such a wide price range, make sure you set a budget and stick to it. Next, you'll want to consider your home and your lifestyle. Do you want more light and air? Or, do you need privacy? Want both? Storm doors that lock from the inside will give your home some added security, but still allow you to enjoy the fresh air and natural light.

Make sure to do your homework and decide which qualities are most important. Find out how various brands compare in terms of functionality and performance. And before you start the installation, check the jamb and trim to make sure they're still secure and in good condition. This way, you'll get a quality installation without having to fight with it. Lastly, homes can shrink, expand, twist and warp with age, so you'll need to make sure the door frame is square and use shims to make any necessary adjustments.

Storm doors have many benefits, but an improper fit or choosing the wrong style can really take away from it. Do you homework, make sure you measure, choose carefully, and you'll find a door that will really make your house a home.

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