More and more homeowners are opting for composite front doors instead of replacement timber, uPVC or aluminium front doors. In this blog post we look at the pros of choosing a composite door and how it compares to other material choices.
Timber or composite?
Real timber has natural beauty but there is often a premium to pay for this, a low-quality timber can also warp and twist over time (Peter Fennell wooden doors are laminated and engineered to add strength, eradicate knots and resist twisting). A timber window will also need maintenance to keep it looking its best, we recommend redecorating every 3-4 years in moderate climates and 2-3 years in extreme climates. Timber is a natural material so also requires regular attention and should be cleaned at least twice a year. Composite doors are particularly easy to maintain; just general cleaning will keep them looking their best for years and little to none redecorating will be needed. In fact, because of the way composite doors are made they do not fade over time even in strong sun for several decades. The colour isn’t applied to the surface of the door so the colour will stay looking bright and bleach free. When deciding between a timber or composite door, the main thing to consider is maintenance. If regular cleaning and redecorating every couple of years isn’t an issue and you like the natural look of timber, then timber may be the choice for you. However, if you want a relatively maintenance free front door, then composite may be the choice for you. You could even choose our ‘light wood’ composite door which will give the impression of a timber door with all the added benefits of composite.
uPVC or composite?
uPVC is a fantastic choice of material for a front door, it is typically the least expensive material, very easy to maintain and more energy efficient than a natural choice like timber. However, uPVC isn’t necessarily the strongest material, some cheap uPVC doors that aren’t reinforced effectively can be broken easily and an intruder could easily get access to the inside handle of a property. A good quality uPVC door such as a Peter Fennell uPVC door is fully reinforced, hinges and locks are also fitted directly to the doors steel reinforcement. A uPVC door is made purely of plastic, whereas a composite door is made from many different materials which are selected for their properties and put together in a way to counter flaws you may find in a single material door. A composite door offers higher security because of their super-strong structure. When deciding between uPVC and composite the main things to consider are price and style. Generally, a uPVC door is going to be slightly cheaper than a composite door but there are more colour choices with composite, we currently offer 11 colour choices for uPVC front doors and 15 colour choices for composite front doors. You can also tailor a composite door to the style of your property easier, we have composite doors in traditional, contemporary and stable options to help maintain the look of your property.
Aluminium or composite?
Aluminium doors are super strong, easy to maintain, compliment any home and come in a range of styles. Aluminium is a composite material and is produced in a way which maintains strength (it can be as strong as steel) but remains light in weight. For this reason, an aluminium door can have a larger glass area than other materials while maintaining strength. By balancing strength and weight an aluminium door can be tougher than other materials such as uPVC. However, a cheap aluminium door can suffer from conduction and condensation issues, which means heat from the outside will be absorbed by the door in the summer making the home warm and cold will get into the home easier in the winter. Investing in a good quality aluminium door, such as one from Peter Fennell, which has thermal breaks in the frames insulate the home from outside temperatures. Aluminium doors are available in black semi-gloss, brown, battleship grey, charcoal grey and white, if you want a door with more character such as rose quartz, garnet or mulberry then composite may be a better option.
What’s right for me?
The answer to this question will often depend on your preferences, budget and how willing you are to keep up with maintenance once the door has been fitted. If you are investing in a good quality front door, such as one from Peter Fennell, whatever material you choose you can rest easy knowing they are all strong and are secured by design.