Steel Entry Door Window Insert

taylorswayAugust 9, 2007

I have a steel entrance door to my home that has a window insert that is held on the door by a fiberglas (plastic?) frame that provides nine grilles (lights). The frame has become slightly detached causing the whole window to move when the door closes shut and of course allowing air to flow through it very easily. Upon inspection it seems the

plastic 'pins' that held the two sides of the plastic frame

(interior and exterior) together have come away from their mountings and without wrecking the whole frame by removing either one side or both I dont know if it is possible to remount these pins for a firm hold again. Also, if there was insulation there previously it doesnt seem to exist now. The pins are mounted inside the frame so there is no screw head access from the outside of the frame. (It is probably an older model steel door and I cannot detect a manufacturers plate on any side or end of it to enable me to refer to them for advice). Does anyone know anything about this type of door and whether it is felt it can be fixed if I put some elbow grease in to it or is it known if there are replacement inserts available. Note I'm in Canada... Thanks.

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You can get new inserts for your door. Measure your glass size and go to a home center and buy a beat up door just for the glass. If you are within driving range of Kingfield ME there is a lumber yard there that sells frosted nature scenes on the inserts. I am not sure if they ship to Canada.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2007 at 8:29PM
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The window kit that holds your glass in gets deformed by the heat of the hot summer. In most cases it's caused by the air space between your entry door and an exterior storm door. If the storm door isn't open to vent the heat that builds up between the doors, the plastic frame will melt or deform. I tell all my customers to keep the screen open at least two inches at the top to vent the heat out.

Depending on the damage to your window kit it may be as easy as turning a screw to tighten it up. The screws should be there on the inside of the door. If you look closely at the window kit you'll see little hole plugs outlined in the stain or paint of the kit. In order to access the screw you'll need to pop the hole cover out of the frame. I use a drywall screw on my cordless screwdriver. I stick the point of the screw in the center of the plug and slowly drive it through the plug. Ounce the drywall screw punches through the cap and bottoms out on the kit screw, the hole plug will pop out. If it doesn't come all the way out just twist it right or left and the plug should come free. Ounce the cap is out you can access the screw and try to tighten it down. Just be very careful not to over tighten the screw as you can crack the glass. If this works you can usually call the door manufacturer to get new hole plugs sent out. Otherwise your local DIY store may have some. If that doesn't work then you'll have to order a new glass kit like fhiwindows stated above. Good Luck!!!

    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 9:12AM
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I have searched hit & low on the Interweb and came across this article by taylorsway.

I have one of this vinyl frame kits on an entry door that is cracked in multiple places on the outside frame.

Does any one know the names of a company where I can get replacement vinyl frame kit? As its only the outside piece that is cracked I guess I could turn it around - but would prefer new pieces. The glass is OK to use again.

thanks for your time

    Bookmark   May 9, 2009 at 2:39PM
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A good lumber yard or exterior material supplier.
Yes, you can reuse the glass but it will be better to buy the whole glass lite kit with glass.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2009 at 7:26PM
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I also have same issue and have been unable to find replacement frame. Wondering if you had any luck.


    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 4:35PM
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I would like to insert a window into a solid steel door. Where can I go to find a double hung window insert for the door? Any suggestions are appreciated.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2010 at 2:09PM
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Don't think it is possible, first your door is probably not "solid steel" probably a core of some sort with a steel skin. Second minimum window frame for a dbl hung window is 2 1/4" and the door is more than likely 1 3/4". You could possible put a fixed vision lite in which they call a vision kit which would contain a frame and a glass panel to install in the frame.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2010 at 3:55PM
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You have a solid steel door? I don't think so, unless you live in a Bank. You cannot just stick a double hung window in a door. If you are having issues with the glass, I would suggest carefully measuring it and then contacting a door manufacturer and asking if they can supply you with a replacement. It would be really helpful if you knew which company made the door. Or you could just replace the door. Might be cheaper to do that.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2010 at 7:04PM
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Where can I find a metal frame kit and wired glass 24 x 24 for a 1 3/4" metal door? Anything online? Thank you.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2011 at 10:43AM
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is their a co in the buffalo,ny that installs decorative glass in a steel door. my neighbor had hers done approx 4 to 5 yrs. ago. it is beautiful, unfortunately the co that did it is not available. if anyone has info re this, i appreciate any info you can give. thanks

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 8:23PM
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I am looking to replace my double pane glass panel (approx 24 1/2 x 37 1/2)with double pane with a steel blind within the glass.


    Bookmark   April 17, 2011 at 1:42PM
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    Bookmark   June 20, 2011 at 4:40PM
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My understanding is you can install a fixed vision lite kit that is vented into a stell door. There is one company from Woburn, Mass. That will make a custom fit kit to fit your door. If there is anyone who knows of any others please let me know. This particular company Horner charges approxmately $190. I am hoping to find another that will not charge as much as I have a big project containing about 300 doors. Thanks!

    Bookmark   July 7, 2011 at 6:54AM
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Most steel door companies have a stock vented vision kit. I personally do not like them as they are invariably made of plastic and do not operate well for after a couple or years. The trick will be to measure the opening in the existing doors and then determine which manufacturer has the same size kit so the doors will not need to have the opening cutout enlarged.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2011 at 8:27AM
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