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Steel Doors: What Are the Pros and Cons?

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Steel doors, despite the name, are not made of solid steel. Rather, they are made of either polyurethane or a polystyrene core with a steel cover over the top. Steel doors usually range between 20 and 26 gauge when used as the skin of the door. The lower the number the thicker the steel. Tom Adams’ primarily sells 20 gauge steel doors. While Home Centers sell 24 or 26 gauge doors. A solid steel door would be extremely heavy, and would cause damage to your frame and hinges. 


Pros and Cons of Steel Doors

Let’s first look at the advantages of installing a steel door to your home or business. Probably the biggest advantage is the durability. Steel doors have a strong outer shell and can withstand wear and tear better than most wood, or vinyl doors. Another advantage is that they are fire-rated and can be heat resistant, along with the correct hardware that meets your town’s fire rating code. This provides an extra layer of safety to your home or business. Durability through any kind of weather is another advantage to installing a steel door. 

On the flip side, steel doors are hard to fix once they are dented. Although able to withstand normal wear and tear, dents can easily downgrade the look and curb appeal. This is also true with scratches and gouges in the outer skin. 

The sheer heaviness of steel doors is also a disadvantage and it can be difficult to make cut-outs, as compared to wood and vinyl doors. These doors can also be very hard for the do-it-yourself homeowner to work on due to the weight and also the outer shells not permitting sanding or filing.


What Are the Factors to Consider When Buying a Steel Door?


Cut Outs

When purchasing a steel door, you need to first ensure that it has all the necessary cutouts that you want post-installation. Making modifications post-installation such as a doggie door or a window are very difficult as steel doors are very hard to cut through, and not recommended by any door manufacturer. 


Steel doors are usually delivered with a factory-supplied primer. Others also come with a PVC vinyl layer adhered to the steel skin to give the look of wood grain or a laminated adhered vinyl paper. It’s important to keep in mind that PVC vinyl layers are hard to paint later and can separate or delaminate with direct sunlight. Heat and Cold can also cause expansion and contraction and delamination.


Steel doors can be hard to fix when either deeply scratched or gouged, but they hold tough through dog or cat scratching. Painting is the best (and simplest) way to repair any deep scratching or gauging to your steel door. 


Steel doors can be very weather-resistant and are on par with fiberglass or wood doors in that category. So, if weather is one of your main concerns, installing a steel door can help. But they do conduct both the cold and heat.  Although they are highly weather resistant, it is still best to look at installing a storm door in front of the steel door to help even further resist against the weather. A steel door and storm combination is the ultimate protection against any kind of weather.


Is a Steel Door the Best Option for Me?

With nearly half of the door installation market being new steel door installations, there are  benefits and negatives. Based on your needs, sizes, and fashion, Tom Adams can help you on this tough decision. Steel doors give you the peace of mind when it comes to security, durability, and energy efficiency. Not to mention, steel doors aren’t too pricey. In fact, they are quite affordable as compared to other fiberglass or wood options. Tom Adams can customize your steel door with additional options such as decorative glass or sidelights to accommodate whatever look and feel you want from your steel door. But if you want the look of wood, let our Tom Adams Salesperson show you the differences between Fiberglass and Steel.


Where Can I Purchase the Best Steel Doors?

Tom Adams is your entry door headquarters! Whether you are looking for steel, fiberglass, wood or vinyl doors, we have you covered. Installing a new entry door on your home makes a great first impression but beyond just curb appeal, Tom Adams has the right steel doors to increase your comfort, energy efficiency, and performance. If you’re local to Philadelphia, including Bucks County PA, Montgomery County PA, and Lehigh valley – give us a call!

Tom Adams isn’t just limited to single entry doors. We have French (double) doors, patio doors, sliding doors, entry doors with storm doors, and entry doors with transoms or sidelights as well. The options are unlimited and the award-winning installation team from Tom Adams will make sure you are satisfied with the performance of your door for years to come.

Contact us today to get a free in-home estimate for your steel door installation or stop in at one of our four locations to see the thousands of door options we have available.

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