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Question DetailsAsked on 4/4/2017

what is the best steel exterior door to buy for your money, minnesota? have estimates on bayerbuilt & mastercraft.

need 1 sidelight also..

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Answered 3 years ago by Member Services


"Best" is in the eyes of the beholder, and there are a LOT of door and window manufacturers out there. Some other brands that are commonly used and in the cheaper side of the ballgame include ThermaTru, JeldWen, Pella, and Masonite.

I have been happy with our foam-core insulated Masonite steel door once I put a real seal on the frame and bottom of the door. That is one thing with cheaper doors - you commonly have to upgrade the weatherstripping around the stop strip and underneath, and add on bottom sweep with driprail to get the runoff from the door (unless totoally protected from the weather) out from the door onto the sill.

One thing to consider - over half the cost (unless DIY'ing) is likely to be labor (more if resizing door opening too), so going with a higher end door for more security commonly does not impact total job cost so much.

One hint on sidelight - unless you use wire mesh-embedded security glass, put the sidelight on the hinge side of the door so a burglar cannot break it and reach around and open the door - also use security hinge pins (cannot be easily pried out with a screwdriver), and of course if sidelight is more than about 8 inches wide it can broken and used as an entrance. And sidelight and door should be secured with large deep-penetrating structural screws, not just finish nails (which can be concealed under stop strip or hinges).

Also - if going with steel door for the security aspect, if wood framed put in extra-long security striker plate and a separate deadbolt lock as well do the door cannot just be smashed open by breaking out the wood frame at the striker. For security better to have steel frame too, though that does make for a colder door unit.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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