Is your front door the same one that came with your home when it was built, whether your house is 10 years old, 15, 25? Many people appreciate the front door for its function—it keeps the weather out and protects your family and belongings. But even though door engineering breakthroughs may not make the news like the latest iPhone, door materials have come a long way in just the past five years. So you may be missing out on the benefits of a newer entry door. Is a fiberglass entry door right for your home? Here are the pros & cons to consider.
What Is a Fiberglass Door?
A fiberglass door is made of compression-molded fiberglass. The compacting of this strong material gives a door ample durability without losing the needed flexibility and visual appeal.
Fiberglass can be compression-molded into almost any shape, so it is an excellent material for entry doors, which look better if they match the look and feel of a home. When used for a front door, the manufacturer creates the two sides of the door separately and places them on a frame. They then fill the hollow between the two pieces with a household-safe, highly-insulating foam core.
Some of the most popular fiberglass entry doors have a wood grain-like texture, so when painted, they give the illusion of a much more expensive solid hardwood front door. That's great for improving curb appeal.
The Pros of a Fiberglass Entry Door
1. It's Versatile
Fiberglass entry doors can be customized to match the style of your home, so it always looks like it belongs with your home, whether you have a mid-century home, contemporary style, or something in between.
2. It's Durable: Pet-friendly, People-friendly, Weather-friendly
This is a big deal. Yes, fiberglass doors can dent or scratch if someone really tried. But compared to wooden doors or steel doors, they're much more resistant to things that make doors look old. For example, if you have a dog that scratches at the door trying to get to you when you get home from work, a wood door would shred. Fiberglass may need to be repainted from time to time, but the door doesn't look shabby. It holds up to real life.
That being said, when it comes to buying a fiberglass entry door, cheaper isn't usually better. Cheaper fiberglass doors can crack and may have to be replaced, which would make it cost more in the long-run. A well-constructed fiberglass door is more durable.
3. It Saves Energy and Money
The insulating power of a fiberglass door is superior to steel and hardwood. It keeps the weather out and air conditioning in.
The US Department of Energy recommends either insulated steel doors or fiberglass doors instead of wood entry doors to cut energy bills and reduce energy waste at the same time.
4. It'll Look and Work Great for a Long Time
Because of the durability, a fiberglass door will tend to look better longer than other options.
5. It Doesn't Need a Storm Door's Protection
Wood can swell and deteriorate. Steel rusts if not protected. Storm doors offer some protection and increase your home's insulation from the elements, but fiberglass doesn't need a separate storm door for either reason. So nothing has to block the beauty of your new door.
6. It's Easy to Maintain
You can wipe down a fiberglass door with a damp rag if it collects cobwebs, dust, dirt, etc. This also means fewer maintenance costs over the life of the door, which saves you money.
The Cons of a Fiberglass Front Door
1. Fiberglass Doors May Be More Expensive
On average, not including installation, a fiberglass exterior door ($800-$2500) may cost over twice as much as a steel ($200-$1000) door and some engineered wood doors ($200-$500).
However, fiberglass exterior doors are generally around half the price of a similar-looking decorative solid wood door (up to $5000).
2. Less Security Compared to Some Options
A door is your first line of defense in the case of a break-in. All locked doors provide some deterrent to criminals, who usually look for easy jobs. According to Hartford Insurance, one third of break-ins can be prevented simply by consistently locking your doors.
A quality fiberglass entry door will not be broken down easily, but if break-ins are a significant concern in your area, a thick steel door or solid wood door provides greater protection from a break-in that involves breaking down the door.
3. Homeowners Association Bylaws
It's also essential to review HOA rules, which may regulate the door types in the community. This isn't so much a con, but a consideration.
4. Slightly Less Resale Value Possible
An excellently maintained steel door can usually recoup 90% of the cost on resale, which is very high. An excellently maintained fiberglass door may recoup 77% of its price on resale, which is also considered very good. If you're planning to sell your home soon and won't get to enjoy the many pros listed above, this is something to think about.
Fiberglass doors are durable, and they’re a great way to add your personal style into your home. ODL doorglass is made for fiberglass and steel entry doors with a style for every home. Check out our Inspiration Gallery to see how you can enhance your fiberglass door with ODL glass.