7 Decisions to Make Before Ordering Custom Wood Doors
Custom wood doors are a popular option for commercial and residential spaces alike. Used in both interior and exterior settings, wood doors are stylistically versatile and can last for years. But when you are looking for new wood doors, you need to ask several important questions before purchasing.
Working with an experienced door manufacturing company offers many benefits. Since 1965, Manhattan Door has provided excellent customer care and solutions to distributors who sell to architects, designers and contractors. Our expertise provides valuable insight into factors like product designs for appearance and function, building codes and production timelines.
While you can customize wood doors, such as the styles we offer at Manhattan Door, to a certain degree, we recommend researching what you need first. So, what should you look for when buying new doors? All contractors should consider the following before buying wood doors for their properties.
1. What Size Doors Do You Need?
While this may seem like an obvious consideration, knowing the precise size requirements for your wood doors is crucial before you start the purchasing process. Obtain measurements of your door frames’ heights, widths and thicknesses before selecting your wood doors.
Typically, interior wood doors measure 80 inches high and at least 32 inches wide. Closet and utility doors usually measure shorter, about 78 inches in height. Older properties might not follow these standard measurements if they were built before the introduction of building codes.
Another important consideration for determining door size is your jamb width or the dimensions of the horizontal and vertical parts of the frames where the doors are secured. Most jamb widths are around 4 1/2 inches, but check your width requirements before committing to specific wood doors. Better yet, have a professional assess your requirements for a perfect fit.
2. What Way Will the Doors Need to Swing?
Depending on the layout of the surrounding space, doors will generally swing to the right or left with their knobs or handles located on the left side, opposite the hinges. Decide which configuration works best for your doorways to ensure that you end up with the most convenient layout for your space. Failing to consider which way your doors should swing can often result in cumbersome, awkward setups that make poor use of the surrounding space.
Consider how residents or visitors will move throughout spaces. An inward opening door should offer comfortable, sensible walking space. If it blocks or bumps into a wall, object or other barriers like a cabinet or toilet, the door should swing in the opposite direction to prevent damage.
3. What Types of Locks or Hardware Are You Looking For?
Before purchasing wood doors, make sure the hardware you need is compatible with the type of doors you want. Some wood doors can only be used with certain hardware, so it is crucial that you only look for wood doors specifically designed to accommodate the hardware you must include.
Lever handles, door knobs or pull handles offer some options for your custom doors. Popular varnishes for handles include polished brass, satin chrome, polished chrome and satin nickel. For added security in any space, opt for hardware with locks.
In addition to hardware compatibility, you should choose doors that complement the style of your required locks and other hardware. This consideration is especially important on doors that include decorative panels and windows. Coordinating cohesive product designs allows you to create a classic, traditional or modern appearance.
4. What Type of Finish Are You Looking For?
You need to determine the type of door finish or veneer you want for your wood doors to ensure that the appearance will complement the other design elements of your space. Moreover, different types of finishes require various levels of upkeep. The finish determines whether the space looks refined, rustic, natural, painted or glossy. Moreover, different types of finishes require various levels of upkeep.
An excellent finish protects the appearance of wood doors and requires less maintenance. Throughout everyday use, normal wear and tear may include bumps, knocks, scuffs, handprints and dirt from pets. Oil, wax, paint and varnish offer many finish options to achieve durability and the desired look on doors.
5. What Trim and Molding Do You Need?
You should always decide on your trim and molding before purchasing wood doors. Make sure your trim is properly adjusted both inside and outside, and remember that you need to consider your exterior construction before performing trim work on your door frames to ensure that every component properly aligns. Keep in mind that you can also adjust the molding for most doors.
Consider whether you want options like mitered casing or butted casing for your trim. The mitered choice refers to matching trim pieces joining at equal angles in the top corners. If you choose a butted door trim, this look combines a wider head casing on top of two casing boards. Adding two decorative blocks — rosettes — in the top corners offers a decorative element to the appearance.
6. What Codes Do You Need to Follow?
Whether you are installing wood doors in a commercial or residential setting, there are certain construction codes you will need to follow to ensure that your doors’ configurations are safe for use. For example, some regulations mandate that specific types of doors meet storm ratings, fire ratings, ADA guidelines and other standards. One ADA door standard requires a minimum of 32 inches of clear spacing when a door opens. To accurately check this, you must perform measurements with the door open at 90 degrees between the top of the frame and the face of the door. Before you purchase wood doors, check your local construction codes to ensure you follow the proper regulations.
7. What Is Your Timeline?
On some occasions, your door company may not have immediate availability for the particular style of wood doors you want, which will cause a delay in installation. Sometimes, producing customized doors can take weeks — forcing other construction projects to remain on hold. Before you decide on certain doors, figure out how much time you can wait in case the specific style you want cannot be installed right away. The standard lead time at Manhattan Door is about two to three weeks instead of the typical eight to 12 weeks of other companies.
We also offer rush orders with custom capabilities for our high-end products. The fast turnaround allows for winning more jobs and getting paid quicker. Manhattan Door can offer up to 10,000 doors, allowing you to order wood doors for any project with the best timeline possible.
If you are crunched for time, keep a list of compatible wood doors that will work for your design scheme in case your first choice becomes unavailable within the required timeline. However, Manhattan Door specializes in quick lead times, so talk to us about your needs.
Other Custom Wood Door Requests
Other commonly asked questions about purchasing wood doors include:
- What door material is best for my construction project? A solid wood door offers the best durability over time.
- What type of warranty should I look for when buying doors? Check to see if the product warranty includes replacement and repairs.
- How much can I customize my wood doors? You can make custom wood doors with specialty hardware, shapes, textures, patterns, and more.
- Which style should I choose? Take our door style quiz to determine which door you should choose for your client or brand design.
- Do I need wood doors with insulation? It depends on what goals you have for your door. Ask one of our experts by calling us now.
- How do I choose energy-efficient doors? Check for a National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) label to compare energy performance.
If you have additional questions about choosing, installing and maintaining your wood doors, our team of experts is here to help. Contact us at Manhattan Door today to get started on finding the perfect wood doors for your next construction project.