Desperately seeking advice with new entry door style

mini_meSeptember 17, 2009

I am in dire need of help and I'm not sure this is the forum but I cannot find another for doors/entry so am posting here.

We live in an older split level home. Built in the 60's but had some remodeling done in the 80's. As you can see by the pictures- there are still a LOT of 60's style to it.

I need to get a new entry door ordered & IN before winter sets in (I live in Alaska & it's going to start getting chilly now)

My husband is like: "buy a door- put it in!". It is up to me to figure out what style would look best on the house. I Don't KNOW :(

I would like a door with 2 sidelights- one on each side. However, the stair rail would be centered as we come into the house then... making it difficult to bring furniture/appliances up the stairs.

Because of this- I'm looking at a door with a side light to the one side. AND a window over it. Do we go with a rectangle shaped window above? Do we go with crescent shape? Will it look off if we don't have the window above- centered more on that wall? I have used the red markings to show what I'm concerned with.

Please, if anyone has any ideas on this- please share with me as I am just completely lost with this. It's not as though I can go to Lows or Home Depot for the answers as I live on an island in Alaska... many miles from anything like that :)

Thank you in advance!

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letter100

We have not replaced our front door yet - will either repaint or replace in the spring. But here are a few thoughts for you:
Have you checked sizes? Is yours a standart size that can be just replaced without doing structural changes? I would get a double door with half glass in each and a rectangle window above. We have a double door now and it's great to open it all the way to bring in furniture, etc. Is there something functionally wrong with the door? Does it really need to be replaced now with whatever you can get fast or can you figure out the details, order what you really like, and replace next spring? Get a simple looking door. I think a fancy one would look out of place in your house. You have simple trim and rectangular shapes. Get one with 6 panel wood (real or look-alike) on the inside and stain it to match the trim over the staircase railing. Or painted white on the inside if you like that. It would brighten the entry area. I would not get a light color on the outside. A white door would look nice outside, matching your window trim, but you will have to clean it often. Since you are on an island internet searching is your best bet to figuring out which door to get. Did you find out what brands you can order? Then look through what's available on their websites and how long it would take them to send it to you.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2009 at 11:58AM
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mini_me

Thank you! We are looking more towards a double door- we DO have to get this done soon as we put in for a grant up here for people to get their homes rated higher- ours was only a 2+ rating & the state will pay a certain % back if we upgrade AND get it up at least one star rating. My hubby has been a stink at putting things off- we already paid $350 for the rating inspection & at that time we had 18 mos to get it completed & get refunded UP to 10k (depending on what we can upgrade to raise the rating- nothing higher than we have paid of course) Well NOW, it's been about 13 mos.. & he has now left it up to ME to figure out WHAT to do :( I'm SO flustered by it (& him LOL) but I know we'll never get the chance to get in on this again... the whole entry is terrible *cold* and drafty. We think by replacing that (those big huge windows by the door mostly!) and adding more insulation UNDER the house- this should up the rating quite a bit. They were definitely on the inspection list. Because we are so low on lighting up here- we'd really like some sort of window above as that actually helps light the upper level as well.

We are able to order just about anything we find on the net because we have it shipped to a shipping barge in Seattle and they bring it right to us :) I don't want anything fancy & that seems to be a lot of my problem as most of what I see ARE real fancy or solid wood etc.

Thank you so much for your thoughts on this!!! ANY help/suggestions are MUCH appreciated :)

    Bookmark   September 18, 2009 at 4:19PM
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letter100

I find it hard to make a choices when there are too many choices. So I categorize all the options and then cross of categories I don't want, cutting down the number of options until I find the best one for me. So, here are some categories for you:
brand?
type - double? + window above
material?
size of doors?
size of window within each door - half?
cost?
color inside / outside?

    Bookmark   September 18, 2009 at 8:46PM
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mini_me

I also find it hard er with so MANY choices!

We have a few booklets I got from Home Depot and they have a LOT of door options but I think what I want is just a double door with the upper half some sort of window. And a straight rectangular window above.

In the booklets though, it doesn't tell us which doors CAN come in the double style. Do you happen to know if most styles in stores like that, come in double?

I really want simple. Nothing fancy at all. Maybe just the upper half windows with 9 panes- but I need double. I'm only finding single- unless I go with ALL glass panes for like a deck. OR the VERY spendy solid wood styles that just would not look right on my house anyway :(

I'm so frustrated I'm ready to POP! I keep searching & searching & am just getting more and more flustered :(

I put these doors together in my photoshop program... they were single doors. How do I go about finding something simple like these in DOUBLE? Any ideas???

Thanks SOOO much!!

    Bookmark   September 19, 2009 at 9:46PM
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letter100

From the looks only I think that first door will look best with your house. But since we haven't replaced our double door I would not be much help in how to buy it. Can you really not find such info on these companies' websites? For example, Pella has a table on their website that shows all their options, door and window sizes, and which are available in what material. You can also call their free phone number and talk to their representative to get your questions answered. You should be able to do that with any door company. If not, I wouldn't deal with them.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2009 at 10:51AM
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mary0001_consumer

Good luck in finding the right door to suite your home. My only word of advise as to manufacturers is to steer clear of Pella/Larsen. Their products are sub standard and their customer service does not exists. I have a door less than 4 years old and is rotting away. Pella admits it is defective but wants me to incur the expense of removing their defective product, removal all the hardware from it, installation and putting on of hardware onto a replacement door they will send.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2009 at 6:05PM
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