Entry doors are often replaced at the same time as the windows around the house.
So naturally for many people the efficiency and performance quality of the doors is almost an afterthought – they just assume it will be the same as the windows.
Yet that isn’t always the case. Because replacement entry doors are still generally made from wood and steel they have their own issues that may require service.
Entry doors are also in high-traffic areas, which makes them more susceptible to problems.
Whereas some people never even end up opening their new windows because of their HVAC system being on, you generally use your doors every day and are more likely to notice the problems.
Unlike windows, which can be made of dozens of components, doors generally arrive at your house in just a few pieces.
Therefore most problems associated with entry doors are a result of improper installation.
I see the light!
One common problem that is evident to homeowners right away is when you are able to see sunlight through a closed door. This should NEVER happen with a properly installed door. Visible light also means that air and drafts can get into your home. Furthermore, this door will definitely leak water and cause it to freeze in the winter, making it impossible to open.
How does this happen?
What usually happens, in this case, when installers drill the door frame into the wall, the screws get over tightened. This causes the frame to bow towards the wall and away from the slab (door). One way you can check this is by taking a plank that is the same width as the slab, and putting it at different points in the door frame. If the installation was performed correctly, the plank will fit the same way at all points of the frame.
The fix for this problem can be as simple as taking the slab off and readjusting the frame to sit evenly. This should definitely be covered by your warranty as it is a problem that happened because of improper installation.
Help! The ground is moving
Another problem that is especially common in Manitoba is the shifting ground underneath the house. Because of softer soil, and higher moisture content, as the ground freezes in the winter it can push on the door from the bottom. This is usually evident if all of a sudden you find it impossible to open the door, or if the lockset no longer matches its opening.
The good news is that this too can be adjusted and your door can be set back in place. The not so good news is that once the ground thaws and begins shifting again, so can your door, requiring further adjustments. Unfortunately, there is no one-time solution for problems like shifting ground.
Tripping over Weather stripping
Another common problem, albeit one that affects doors after several years, is worn down weather stripping. If the door all of a sudden feels colder or you can feel drafts, but there is no visible light, chances are the weather stripping is worn down. This is also a very easy fix as in most cases you can even do this yourself.
As we mentioned above, most entry door problems are a result of improper installation. Therefore, getting a service technician to come and fix it shouldn’t be a problem, or something you pay out of pocket. Ultimately you want to pick a company that not only recognizes these common problems with doors, but is also willing to work with you and fix it without just blaming the problem on the door being in a high traffic area.
Picking a company with a designated service department can not only save you from drafty and leaky doors, but also give you a peace of mind, and keep money in your pocket knowing that your investment is taken care of.