When looking to buy new external doors, getting value for money is arguably the most important consideration, but increasing financial restrictions on both property owners and landlords means there is extra pressure to minimise costs. Rob Hartill of Permadoor explains the choices.
In most cases, choosing the cheapest doors rarely represents the best value in the long-term as they can incur further costs on maintenance and even replacements in the years to come.
Instead, specifiers on a tight budget should consider the cost of a product’s whole-lifecycle before committing to spend.
A variety of options are available, but making some important considerations will ensure that the purchasing experience isn’t overly challenging.
Future-proofing is the key to guaranteeing value for money. At first glance, most external doors might perform well, but how will they stand the test of time?
Making sure products deliver optimum insulation, durability and visual appeal over many years is critical. Long-term performance will work out much cheaper than having to regularly replace budget doors.
Whether choosing for new builds, renovations or refurbishments, combining comfort, security and energy performance with a strong design are also primary considerations.
The benefits of composite
When it comes to long-term solutions, composite doors make an ideal choice. They are visually appealing, available in a variety of colours, and provide a real wood grain appearance, making them perfect for a range of applications, including as external or fire doors. They are also highly resistant to denting, warping, splitting, peeling and fading.
They are made from robust materials that are selected for their resilient properties which, when combined, counteract common flaws found in similar products. Composite doors combine superior aesthetics, high performance and thermal efficiency, and are low maintenance. What’s more, they are easy to install and lock cylinders are easy to replace.
Which composite door to choose?
There are two primary options to consider: Foam-filled glass reinforced plastic (GRP) or solid timber core thermoplastic. Both offer outstanding performance, but are best suited to different applications.
Foam-filled GRP excels at thermal performance, providing superior insulation compared to timber.
While they are both equipped to pass the latest PAS24:2016 cut-through test, which is assessed on whether they can withstand a three-minute attack using two chisels (6 mm and 25 mm) and a Stanley knife in the central 800 mm zone, solid timber core thermoplastic are tougher and more secure, as they offer the same level of security across the whole door area.
Composite doors should be the first choice when it comes to future-proofing. Selecting a product that will perform to the highest standards is critical in today’s market, but they must also create the right look and feel for a property.
Composite doors combine traditional looks with the benefits of high performance and low maintenance. A wide choice of colours, styles and accessories, as well as bespoke sizing, means they are ideal for a range of projects. Many come with up to a 10-year guarantee.
Look for doors that offer the highest level of security, with PAS24/Secured by Design compliant specification available. They should also be Building Regulations compliant and CE marked.
With composite doors there really is no compromise. They offer the full package of looks and performance.
Rob Hartill is commercial director at Permadoor