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Best Door Material: Wood, Steel or Fiberglass?

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A new door is a big deal and whichever kind you pick has the potential to change the entire face of your home – so you want to make it good.

But, looks are just the tip of the iceberg. Other things to consider are price, durability over time and adequate security in the moment. So, when you factor all these variables together, which door material comes out best: fiberglass, steel or wood?

Door Prices

Not unlike door prizes, door prices can also surprise you. Why? One reason: because out of the three, the cheapest you’re going to find will likely be made of steel.

It’s because inexpensive steel doors are easy to manufacture. They’re thin, sometimes to the point of being easily warped or bent, and they may chip or rust. You can buy a good steel door, of course, but even the cheapest wood and fiberglass doors usually can’t compete with the economy of steel.

WINNER: Steel

Door Durability

This is wholly dependent on price. A solid wood door is super strong, but it’s also super expensive. And, the same could be said for a steel door.

Fiberglass, on the other hand, offers great durability for the price. They’re weather-resistant, come in endless styles and have several price points that can accommodate most any budget.

WINNER: Fiberglass

Door Security

It’s hard to beat a solid wood door, but the issue is that many (if not most) wooden doors aren’t solid; they’re often a wood laminate with a hardboard core wedged in between. These aren’t bad doors, but nor are they as strong as the solid wood variety.

The same is true of steel doors; thicker steel (a lower gauge) is going to perform better than thinner steel, and the price is going to be what makes the difference.

Once again, fiberglass falls into the middle of the pack, although unlike with durability this doesn't do it many favors when it comes to security. Fiberglass is strong enough, and much stronger than an economy-priced steel door, but it doesn’t take the prize.

WINNER: Wood

Your Perfect Door

So, as you can see, each door type has its pros and cons, which is nearly always the case with most anything. A good rule of thumb: Splurge on the perfect door as an investment that will last, and if you need help with installation you can always find a great local handyman on Porch.com.

This top-rated door knocker from Artesano Iron Works is hand-forged and comes in three finish options to better match your home''s look.

Perfect for rehabbing vintage homes, this top-selling keyed mortise lockset from First Watch Security is crafted in solid brass. 

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