Metal doors: pros and cons

Until recently, metal doors were used exclusively in high-security buildings and factories. Its low sale price, resistance, durability and design made its use also extend to private homes and residences.

Although it is true that other types of materials are better in terms of obtaining style variants, such as wood, steel doors have greatly improved their aesthetic possibilities. Today they can be purchased with modern and minimalist designs, even in combination with other elements such as glass.

If you are interested in installing a metal door, today we will present the advantages and disadvantages that they will bring you. Thanks to this you will be able to have an objective assessment of whether or not its use is convenient for you in contrast to others.

Pros of metal doors

You may have been interested in metal doors because of their advantages. Compared to others, such as wood, fiberglass or aluminum, steel ones have a higher degree of strength and durability. Let's review what benefits you receive by opting for them.

1. They are safer

There are several standard tests that measure the degree of security of the materials used in the doors. In the United States, for example, the Institute of Steel Doors (Steel Door Institute) has developed several experiments to guarantee the security of steel doors over other alternatives on the market.

Their investigations also contrasted the models of wood, aluminum and fiberglass. The results obtained showed that steel is the best material to withstand waves of fire, explosions, tornadoes and forced entry.

This last criterion is interesting, since forced entry methods applied to government buildings were used. Explosion-resistant metal doors have been developed, which endorses the value of this material above others.

In short, if you want to sleep peacefully without the fear that your door will be knocked down by a stranger, then you should choose one made of metal. They are the safest of all due to their weight, strength and tightness.

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2. They last longer than other doors

As long as they have been professionally installed and properly maintained, a metal door can last up to 30 years. If the model is in an area where light, humidity and water are scarce, then its useful life is extended even further.

Depending on the treatment that has been done to the steel, such as galvanization, the door can reach this age range in better condition than wood or aluminum models. Wooden ones, for example, tend to discolor, crack or rot.

Metal doors are safer than the rest and this has been shown by tests carried out on these models.

3. Its maintenance is very easy

Especially when they have a protective coating or a special treatment to prevent corrosion. Steel won't crack, dent, or bend easily. It is an ultra-resistant element that only requires occasional care.

In case of repairs, it can be solved with a little body putty or welding for a relatively low cost. Because its structure is prone to rust, it is recommended to minimize the water it receives during cleaning.

4. They are efficient from an energy point of view

Because they retain the heat or cold that surrounds them, metal doors help keep the temperature unchanged by external conditions. This is further reinforced by the tightness.

There are many variants that offer different degrees of energy efficiency. For example, metal doors with a polyurethane, polystyrene, honeycomb or hardened reinforced steel core.

The former have an efficiency similar to that of fiberglass, the best material in terms of thermal performance. On average, the U factor of the latter is 0.35, while in steel with a polyurethane core it is 0.38.

5. Isolate noise

Offices, schools, and other facilities use metal doors for good reason: their efficiency in isolating noise. The acoustic performance of doors and windows is measured through the STC classification. The sound transmission coefficient in steel doors is the highest of all: between 40 STC and 48 STC.

This makes it possible to minimize the amount of noise that comes from the outside to the inside and vice versa. It translates into greater privacy, with less noise pollution and maximization of productivity in activities that demand a certain degree of concentration.

6. They are more affordable

Steel is the most recycled material in the world. According to data from the Association of European Steel Producers (APEAL), 82.5% of steel is recycled in the old continent. The same figures are handled in other regions, such as North America.

Recycling helps reduce manufacturing costs, especially when compared to other materials used in the doors. If the useful life is taken into account, then the savings are more significant.

7. Can be customized

Contrary to what is believed, metal doors have a very varied level of customization. It is true that in the design plane the wooden ones are more elegant, but the steel models can be ornamented to combine perfectly with the home decoration.

You can adapt them to different shapes and sizes and even acquire them in various shades of color. You can also choose models with or without windows, with minimalist, modern designs or with nods to the classic style.

Besides this, can be installed in different parts of the home. Whether or not they are a main door, metal ones offer unmatched advantages over other materials. For all their virtues, they have been used for decades as an alternative for the garage.

Cons of metal doors

Just as these doors have their pros, they also have some cons. Fortunately they are few and can be reduced even more depending on the type of steel variant you use.

1. They are heavy

Yes, doors made of metal elements are heavier than stainless steel, aluminum or some types of wood. Although this is of course beneficial in terms of safety, it can be a problem for some members of the family.

If you have a disability or suffer from certain conditions such as arthritis, it is likely that over time the extra weight can play against you. There are some variants that are a bit lighter.

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2. They are prone to rust

Especially if they have not been coated with a special treatment or have not been galvanized. In certain cases, before bumps or scratches part of the layer can be compromised.

Climatic conditions, humidity, water or geographic location (living near salty places, such as the sea) can also encourage chemical development. Of course there are ways around this, and vigilant surveillance can detect the problem in its early stages.

3. They do not fit all frames

In contrast to the wooden doors, metallic ones are not suitable for all frames. They can be customized in terms of color and texture, but not in their cut.

This is perhaps their most important disadvantage, since it determines the place where they can be installed. To remedy this, manufacturers have a wide range of doors of various sizes and shapes that compensate for the limitation.

The traditional use of metal doors has been in garages and in organization buildings.

4. Repairs and installation must be done by a professional

Nothing prevents you from trying these two actions on your own, although for more precise results, the mediation of a professional is necessary. This applies to possible repairs you may have to do in the future.

Think about the repairs you make to the body of your car. Only the technique of an expert can leave them in perfect condition, since the principle used is essentially the same.

Metal doors for life

If you want to enjoy your metal door for the stipulated life time, then you must know how to properly maintain them. So use a soft cloth or sponge to avoid scratches. Don't use a lot of water or strong detergents. At the end of the cleaning make sure to remove all traces of soap.

Wipe with a duster or dry cloth once a week to prevent dust buildup. If you decide to paint it, use only galvanized paint. Finally, waxing or polishing must be endorsed by the manufacturer. Check its maintenance parameters or contact a specialist in case of doubts.