How to Select an Energy Efficient Door

When you’re doing everything you can to keep a tight lid on your utilities budget nothing can save you more than reducing your heating and cooling bill.

There are many things that you can do to make a big impact and in this article we will be discussing one of the biggest and that is how to select an energy efficient door.

Of the many other factors that also need weight in the discussion are the effects of remolding changes on your home’s value. What will happen come home assessment  and or tax time and how do these factor into your decision?

First we will talk about how your doors exchange heat and air which are their two primary methods of energy loss.

Ways Your Doors Lose Energy

1. Direct Conduction: is when energy in the form of heat passes directly through the door just like when you pour hot coffee into a mug in the morning and in a minute or two the mug is hot enough for you to warm your hands by it. That heat has directly “conducted” or passed through the ceramic of the mug just like your homes heat passes through the door.

2. Solar Heat Gain: In the summer air conditioning bills can be brutal and having a door that allows Solar Heat Gain is just like putting a solar hot pad on your house. It works by the Sun heating the door with direct sunlight and the door transferring that  heat into your home. Nearly everyone has a door or two that get sun on them and so a little energy remodeling is definitely in order.

3. Air Leakage: Refers to the tightness of the seals around the doors and how much hot or cold air exchanges through the gaps. In the winter when there’s a cold wind blowing you can get an amazing amount of draft through even a relatively small leak let alone a large one.

What Types Of Doors Solve These Problems?

The three main door material types are going to be wood, metal and fiberglass or as many call them composite. Here we will discuss the benefits and detractors of each.

Wood Doors: Their benefits are mostly aesthetic as even though wood has a relatively good thermal mass rating it’s not able to compete with other modern materials. So, the benefits of a wood door are its beauty.

The downside of wood doors is that they warp and crack massively contributing to air leakage and are quite prone to sun damage and rot as well.

Metal Doors: are more efficient than wood doors simply because they are well insulated on the inside. They are typically not prone to warping and cracking and hold true throughout their lifespan. One small consideration is that they are typically the cheapest of the three to purchase but this is a small factor in the overall considerations.

Their challenges are that they rust and dent easily. Also for most people they are not nearly as pleasing to look at as would be a hand crafted wood door.

Fiberglass Or Composite Doors: The advantages of composite doors are that they don’t rot, warp, rust, crack or shrink. They make them in all kinds of wood patterns now and they do take a stain rather well. So, if done right it’s difficult to tell they aren’t wood until you are right up on them.

They typically have a better overall energy rating, they qualify in most states for a tax credit and even though they typically cost more than metal doors they are less expensive than wood.

Their downside is that they are not as aesthetically pleasing as wood doors and no matter what people say they just don’t look like a really nice wood door when you are up close.

Selecting the right energy efficient door is an important decision and one that should be well researched. Be sure to write down what your main requirements from a door are before selecting. Writing it down can really help bring clarity to it so that you’re happy with your choice for years to come.

Ameline Clerk a writer for www.safedoors.co.uk is enraptured by interior design which definitely shows in her work. Having skills and loving what you do combine for an amazing overall experience with Ameline.

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