Storm doors, importantly differentiated from screen doors, are certainly optional for every homeowner but recommended by professionals for many reasons. In particular, storm doors are most beneficial in areas of the country where your external doors might need some extra protection. In addition, areas with warmer climates often lead homeowners to look for solutions for increased ventilation, and having a storm door is a great one.
Here in the northeastern part of the U.S., weather changes throughout the year, but summers can still be hot and humid. We also frequently come under the threat of severe storms and tornados, leading to a higher risk of flying debris and damage. If you live in the tri-state area, a storm door is more than worth the investment.
A storm door is an extra outer door added to the exterior doors of your home. A storm door differs from a screen door in that a storm door protects your exterior door from weather events with a layer of glass. Storm doors can also have built-in optional screens for use in warmer weather.
On the other hand, screen doors have screening covering all or most of the doors, allowing for extra ventilation in the home. They could provide some protection from debris, but are not as strong or protective as storm doors.
The addition of a storm door can prolong the life of your front door and other entryway doors by helping to protect them from the elements. Storm doors also add an extra layer of insulation and come with many energy-saving features, thereby improving energy efficiency. You might even consider adding a storm door to cut down on drafts if your door is older but you’re not ready for an upgrade yet.
When the weather is nicer, you can leave your entryway door open and allow the sun to stream in the glass of the storm door. Essentially, you’ll be able to turn your door into another window, extending your view of the outdoors without letting out your air conditioning. Keep an eye on kids or pets playing outside, or set up a comfy place for your pets to guard your home from inside the door.
The ability to switch out the storm door glass for screening in the summer allows you to enjoy those lovely warm breezes while keeping the bugs outdoors. Coastal homes can especially benefit from this option, letting in the sea breeze while keeping those nasty black flies away.
If you want to fully show off your front door, you may opt for a full glass storm door that keeps the view open from top to bottom. If not, storm doors can also be partial glass or specialized with low-E glass, frosting, or etching.
These doors come in a wide variety of materials to fit every budget and style. Storm doors can be made from fiberglass, wood, aluminum, or vinyl, and can be painted or stained to match the home’s exterior.
Related Article: How to Upgrade Your Existing Front Door and Entryway
For extra privacy, storm doors can come with built-in blinds. For safety, you can choose a storm door with extra locks. The hardware, including latches, can be chosen especially to match the home’s decor and color palette. Further, you can add features such as a closer that locks the door open while you carry in the groceries and then smoothly glides it closed behind you.
The days of the “one size fits all” aluminum storm doors are in the past.
Storm doors often aren’t fully appreciated until a homeowner experiences all the benefits of having one after they’re installed. Sure, your front door may look and work fine, but wait until you can keep it open for extra natural light and ventilation while benefitting from increased energy efficiency, better views, and keeping pests away. Start enjoying the outdoors even while you’re inside!