One of the most common questions we hear from homeowners is, “which entry door should I choose, steel or fiberglass”? The short answer is – it depends. The technology for both steel and fiberglass doors has come a long way, and typically either choice will deliver much better long-term performance than a traditional wood door, without the time-consuming maintenance. This means your choice truly depends on your personal taste, style and preferences. Here are some key factors to consider.
Fiberglass Entry Doors
The popularity of fiberglass entry doors continues to increase, and with good reason:
- Beauty – Fiberglass doors most closely mimic the defined grain of traditional word doors and come in Smooth or a number of Wood Grain textures like Oak, Cherry, Mahogany, Knotty Alder and Fir, as well as a variety of stain, glazed and paint colors. Additionally, fiberglass doors offer many options for glass, including Decorative Door Glass, Simulated Divided Lites and Inspirations Art Glass, all of which improve curb appeal. All Armor doors are custom-made to the size and style specifications of the buyer, to ensure the best fit.
- Endurance – Unlike wood doors, fiberglass entry doors do not shrink, warp, split, crack or delaminate. They’re ideal for harsh and humid climates. Because fiberglass doors last so long, many come with strong warranties. Armor doors, for example, come with a Lifetime Limited Warranty that guarantees them throughout the entirety of the ownership of the home by the door purchaser, plus one subsequent homeowner. Paint, glazed and stain finishes are warranted for up to 10 years.
- Energy Efficiency – Fiberglass entry door systems are engineered to be highly energy efficient. The polyurethane core, heat-resistant window trim, Q-Lon weather stripping and ComforTech Warm Edge Glazing System in Armor entry doors work together to keep the cold out in winter and heat out in the summer. All Armor entry doors without glass are ENERGY STAR® certified and many models with glass also meet ENERGY STAR standards.
- Security – The solid construction of fiberglass entry doors provides significant security over wood doors.
- Cost – Fiberglass doors are typically less expensive than a high-end wood door (depending on the model, glass options and hardware selected), and offer longer durability and far less maintenance.
- Maintenance – Fiberglass entry doors offer low maintenance, resist denting and can be cleaned with mild soap and water.
Steel Entry Doors
Steel entry doors remain popular with homeowners and are a solid choice for a variety of reasons:
- Beauty – Steel entry doors are available in smooth or wood grain textures, in multiple stains and paint finishes, and come in a variety of door styles, including some with glass.
- Durability – Steel doors, particularly those made of 20-gauge steel, like Armor’s Legacy Steel line, won’t crack or warp and are the strongest, most durable doors available on the market.
- Maintenance – Steel doors will offer low maintenance depending on the galvanization (rust prevention) and thickness of the steel. Armor’s Legacy Steel doors come with a Lifetime Limited Warranty and a 7 year paint and stain warranty.
- Energy Efficiency – Steel entry doors offer significantly more energy efficiency than wood doors. Efficiency ratings vary based on overall construction, but Armor Legacy Steel doors are recognized as being highly energy efficient, with all doors without glass meeting ENERGY STAR certification. Depending on the glazing option chosen, many Legacy Steel entry doors with glass are also ENERGY STAR certified.
- Security – Steel entry doors offer the best solution for owners concerned with building or home security. In some markets, steel doors are known to be a deterrent to would-be intruders.
- Cost – Steel entry doors are very affordable compared to wood doors and offer significant long-term value. Total cost can vary widely depending on door styles and options chosen.