When it's time to upgrade your home's exterior and boost its curb appeal, few projects offer as much aesthetic and practical improvement as an exterior door installation. This task not only revitalizes the appearance of your home but also improves energy efficiency, security, and durability. However, installation requires precision and attention to detail. In this article, we'll explain the step-by-step process, along with some essential tips to ensure a successful exterior door installation.

Understanding Your Exterior Door Installation Needs

Before starting an exterior door installation, it's crucial to understand different types of doors available and their specific installation requirements. From single doors, double door designs, to those with sidelite configurations, door options vary. Your chosen door should suit your home's architecture and fulfill your security, energy efficiency, and aesthetic needs.

Selecting The Right Exterior Door

Choosing an exterior door can be overwhelming given the wide range of styles, materials, and features on offer. Some common materials include:

  • Wood: A classic choice known for its natural beauty and versatility.
  • Steel: Ideal for security and durability, with improved insulation.
  • Fiberglass: Offers a balance of beauty, cost-effectiveness, and energy efficiency.

Your choice should align with your home style, personal preferences, and climate conditions. For instance, if you live in an area with extreme weather conditions, a steel or fiberglass door might be a better choice than wood.

Preparing for Exterior Door Installation

Correct measurements are vital in exterior door installation. A door that fits perfectly will provide a tight seal against drafts and improve energy efficiency.

How to Take Measurements

When taking measurements, consider the width, height, and thickness of the current door. Include the door jamb in your measurement, and if you're replacing the entire frame, measure the opening's rough size in the wall.

Step-by-Step Door Installation Process

With the right door and correct measurements at hand, it's time to embark on the installation process.

Removing the Old Door

Start by removing the old door from its hinges. It would be best to have someone assisting you to prevent the door from falling and causing injuries or damaging floors.

Preparing the Door Frame

Examine your door frame for any damages before installing the new door. Make any necessary repairs or replacements.

Installing the New Door

Place your new door in the opening and ensure it's level. If necessary, secure shims to square up the door before screwing it into place.

Maintaining Your Newly Installed Exterior Door

Proper maintenance can extend the lifespan of your newly installed door, keep it looking fresh, and ensure it operates smoothly for many years to come.

Door Maintenance Tips

Regular cleaning, checking weather stripping, and performing light sanding and repainting for wooden doors can keep your exterior door in excellent condition. Lubricate hinges periodically for smooth operation.

Whether you're performing the exterior door installation yourself or hiring professionals, understanding the process can help you avoid common mistakes and get the best results. Remember, your front door is one of the first impressions guests have of your home, so it deserves careful thought and attention to detail.

Frequently Asked Questions About Exterior Door Installation

Our expert team of door installers gets a lot of questions about exterior door installations; here is a list of the most frequently asked questions to assist you in your research.

What Materials are Best for Exterior Doors?

Exterior doors can be made from a variety of materials including wood, metal, fiberglass, and composite. The choice will depend on your specific needs regarding aesthetics, insulation, durability, and maintenance.

How Long Does Exterior Door Installation Take?

The time it takes to install an exterior door varies depending on the type of door being installed, the conditions of your existing door frame, and the skill level of the installer. In general, a professional can usually complete the job within a few hours.

Can I Install an Exterior Door Myself?

Yes, it is possible to install an exterior door yourself if you have the necessary skills, tools, and patience! However, if you're not experienced in this type of work, it's often best to hire a professional to ensure correct and safe installation.

Do I Need to Paint or Stain my Door after Exterior Door Installation?

While it's not always necessary, finishing your door with a paint or stain can help protect it from the elements and extend its lifespan. Some doors come pre-finished, but others may require this additional step.

What are the Signs that I need a New Exterior Door Installation?

Common signs that you may need to replace your exterior door include drafts, difficulty opening or closing the door, visible damage or decay, and increased energy bills. A new door can improve your home's appearance, security, and energy efficiency.

What is the Average Cost for Exterior Door Installation?

The cost of exterior door installation can vary widely depending on the type of door you choose, your location, and whether or not the existing door frame needs any repair work. On average, the cost typically ranges from $500 to $5,000.

What Should I Look for When Choosing a Company for Exterior Door Installation?

When choosing a company for your exterior door installation, look for one with experience, good customer reviews, and fair pricing. Be sure to ask for an estimate before hiring a company to understand all the costs involved in the project.

Can an Exterior Door Installation Help with Insulation?

Yes, a well-installed exterior door provides a tight seal, reducing drafts, and helping maintain a consistent temperature in your home. This can improve energy efficiency and save you money on utility bills.

How Can I Maintain my Door After an Exterior Door Installation?

Regular cleaning, painting or sealing if necessary, and checking for damage or wear are essential steps to maintain your door. If it is a wooden door, protect it from exposure to harsh weather conditions to prevent warping and cracking.

What Safety Features Should I Look for in an Exterior Door?

When considering safety, look for features like solid construction, deadbolt locks, and peepholes. If you live in an area prone to hurricanes or break-ins, consider doors made with impact-resistant materials or extra secure locking mechanisms.

Pros and Cons of Exterior Door Installation

Pros of Exterior Door Installation

Enhanced Security

  • One of the most compelling reasons for exterior door installation is the increase in home security.
  • New doors often come equipped with updated security features such as stronger locks and anti-break-in measures.
  • This reassures homeowners that their families and property are well-protected.

Aesthetic Appeal

  • A brand new exterior door can greatly enhance the visual appeal of your home.
  • There are numerous styles, designs, colors, and finishes available, allowing homeowners to select a door that complements the architectural style of their home.
  • New exterior doors often become a focal point, contributing positively to curb appeal.

Energy Efficiency

  • Modern exterior doors are generally more energy efficient compared with older models.
  • They are designed with insulation properties to prevent air leaks, lowering heating and cooling costs.
  • Some models also have eco-friendly credentials, contributing to a greener living environment.

Durability and Low Maintenance

  • Most modern exterior doors are designed for durability and can withstand varying weather conditions.
  • Materials such as fiberglass, steel, and composite provide a long lifespan with minimal maintenance compared to traditional wood doors.
  • These materials also resist warping, scratches, and dents, making them cost-effective in the long run.

Cons of Exterior Door Installation


  • One significant downside of exterior door installation is the cost.
  • High-quality doors, especially those with advanced security features or made from premium materials, can be expensive.
  • Additionally, professional installation can also add to the overall costs.

Installation Challenges

  • Installing an exterior door can be a complex task, especially for inexperienced DIY enthusiasts.
  • Installation requires precision in measurements and fitting to ensure optimal performance and security.
  • Improper installation could result in drafts and energy wastage or even compromise the door's security.

Time Consuming

  • The process of choosing the right exterior door can be time-consuming due to the myriad options available.
  • Moreover, the installation process itself may take several hours or even longer if complications arise.


  • While modern exterior doors are designed for durability, they are not completely maintenance-free.
  • Type of materials significantly impact the level of maintenance required; wood doors, for instance, require regular painting or varnishing to prevent weather damage.
  • Also, wear and tear over time, especially in harsh weather conditions, can affect the aesthetical charm of the door and sometimes even compromise its functionality.


There's an immediate sense of satisfaction when you open and close your newly installed exterior door for the first time. With the right tools, measurements, and substantial effort, anyone can triumph over the task of exterior door installation. Ultimately, remember that the perfect door adds a significant curb appeal to your house while also providing that crucial layer of security and insulation.

Exterior door installation may seem challenging at the start, but it offers an opportunity to enhance the beauty of your home. From selecting the right door to laboriously ensuring its fit and finish, every step involved is a chance to create a welcoming exterior. Not only does a new door come with aesthetic benefits, but it also improves energy efficiency, pushing down your monthly bills.

Whether you're a DIY enthusiast or a professional, the process of exterior door installation can be a rewarding experience. As you progress, you'll pick up useful skills, and the finished product will leave your home safer, warmer, and more beautiful. Remember, the correct installation is key, and with a well-fitted exterior door, you're actually saving money in the long term due to less heat loss and increased security.

About US Quality Construction

Welcome to US Quality Construction! Based in the heart of Kansas City, MO, we are a trusted and committed construction company dedicated to bringing your architectural dreams to life. Our experienced team of professionals prides itself in delivering exceptional craftsmanship and attention to detail in every project. Whether constructing a new building or renovating an existing space, we go above and beyond to ensure our clients are satisfied with our reliable and high-quality services. Discover more about our work and how we can help you create the perfect space by visiting our website.

Tags: Exterior Doors, Door Installation, Home Improvement,