Wherever it’s situated, the best exterior door is, of course, always going to be the one that will keep your home safe from the many negative influences from the outside world, and—this is just as important a consideration to many—add aesthetic appeal.
Think about it. Your front door is one of the first things a visitor will notice, whether it’s a house guest or an intruder! So not only does it have to look good, but it also has to be sturdy and durable.
So, after much research and analysis, we now present the 4 finest exterior doors we’ve found, along with answers to your most important questions about how to choose the ideal exterior door.
The 4 Best Exterior Doors Review in 2020From material to framing and fixtures, we’ve considered all the important aspects of a good exterior door before putting together this list. Here are our top picks of the best exterior doors.
1. Huntington M36 Exterior Entry Wood Door
- An impressive display of side-light windows for ample lighting
- The traditional design will add a touch of elegance to your home
- Rich and elegant mahogany finish with resistant coating
- Comes with a beautiful and timeless silver handle
- Comes with required exterior and interior trim for ease of installation
The first exterior door we’ve selected for your consideration is an absolutely delightful pick in mahogany, boasting a deep, rich reddish-brown color in a traditional, heavy-set design featuring copious side-lights.
As you may already know, mahogany is one of the most premier options available to those who are looking to buy a wooden exterior door. Mahogany is one of the most durable and sturdy wood types out there, making it the ideal choice for a wooden door.
And of course, it looks gorgeous too. In this particular door, the mahogany’s brilliance is in full display with a classic design that is bound to add nobility and elegance to your home’s overall architecture and aesthetics.
But undoubtedly, our favorite thing about this door is the sidelights that have been integrated into its design. Set along either side of the door and across the upper third of the door, these sidelights only add to the door’s stately elegance. And of course, there is the added benefit of more lighting.
Now let’s look at some specs. Measuring 12″x36″x80″, this door comes pre-hung on its frame, meaning you will have to adjust the entryway frame accordingly. Included with the door are a heavy-set silver handle, jambs, and threshold—a nice, complete package. Keep in mind that entry hardware won’t be included with your purchase, but that shouldn’t be a deal-breaker!
2. ETO Doors Tuscany 2-Panel Entry Door
- Made from high-quality Brazilian mahogany for durability
- Has a modern yet elegant design bound to add graceful style to your home
- Glass panels provide insulation and keep out sound
- Available in 4 different size specifications to suit most existing door frames
- Available at a competitive price point despite high-end features
Our next pick is also a mahogany door, but this one comes with a more understated design. Nevertheless, with its iron curlicues on insulated glass, this exterior door is equally high-quality and beautiful, and it’s bound to pique your interest.
First, let’s discuss the construction of the door. Made from premium quality Brazilian mahogany, this exterior door comes with a large glass panel, inside which is the iron design frame. The rails and stiles, as well, are made from Brazilian mahogany.
The inlaid glass in this door has a thickness of 3/4 inches, which is what enables it to cushion sound and provide good insulation. Although the door doesn’t ship pre-hung, you can put in a request while placing your order.
Now back to the most important concern: how it looks! Mahogany is, of course, the top choice for wooden doors, owing not only to their durability but also their aesthetic appeal. This door is on the brownish side of the mahogany color spectrum, and it beautifully offsets the Tuscany iron grill encased inside the glass. The two hollow squares add a sense of stateliness while maintaining the door’s overall welcoming, homely appeal.
All of the features we’ve just described seem even better when considered in the light of the door’s price. Mahogany doors are hard to come by at such a competitive price, but the manufacturers of this one have managed to keep the price reasonable while maintaining quality.
3. BGW Wood Exterior Front Entry Door
- Features a wonderfully unique glass etching design
- Made from high-quality African Mahogany and insulated glass
- Arrives pre-hung and pre-finished for ease of installation
- Comes with double hole bores for entry handle set of your choice
- Can be customized to tailor-made specifications
- Solid wood rails and stiles built to stand up to warping
We’ve seen enough of single doors; now it’s time for a double-door set with a design that, if we’re being honest, is probably our favorite one out of the four doors we’re looking at today.
But before we get into looks, let’s talk about the build and functionality of the door. Like the last two doors we reviewed, this one is also made of mahogany. The manufacturers make it a point to polish the wood to perfection before sending it your way, so it’ll be a long time before you have to re-finish or re-paint by yourself.
Set squarely in the middle of each door slab is beautiful and highly durable glazed glass. On both doors are two pre-drilled holes for the insertion of handles. Yes, this does mean that you’ll have to separately purchase the handles, but that just translates to an opportunity for customization.
And now for our favorite part of this door: its totally unique, post-modern glass etching. Yep, we mentioned that the design of this door is probably our favorite, and there was a good reason for that. Visitors to your home are sure to be wowed by this one-of-a-kind design, set so seamlessly into a pair of such impressive double doors.
Now, it’s true that this door is quite expensive; nevertheless, it must be admitted that given the quality of its construction and its unique aesthetic value, it’s still a reasonable price considering the other mahogany options on the market.
4. BGW Exterior Entry Door Finished Left Hand
- Includes two bored holes on either side for your chosen handle set
- Solid wood stiles and rails are kiln-dried to resist warping for longer
- Door comes pre-hung and is easy to install in a matter of 15-30 minutes
- High-quality craftsmanship with high-quality components
- Also available as a single door with or without side paneling
The fourth and final door we have picked out is also from BGW, and yes, you guessed right: it’s made of mahogany. What can we say? Although there are lots of options on the market, we can’t deny the beauty and timelessness of a beautiful mahogany door.
Enough chatter, let’s see what this door has to offer us. Built from African mahogany and featuring triple-glazed glass panels, this is a set of double doors that will draw out a “wow” from you the moment you lay eyes on it. You’re bound to love its simple yet tastefully designed iron inlay.
The door itself is extremely well-made, which is quite evident from the quality of the framing. Speaking of which, the door comes pre-hung, so although you’re going to have to buy the handle set separately, installing the actual door shouldn’t take longer than a total of 30 minutes.
Oh, and don’t worry if a double door isn’t what you’re looking for because BGW has also made this beauty available in a single specification or with sidelights if that’s what suits your fancy.
Finally, a word on the price point: once again, like a mahogany door, this one is definitely on the high end of the price spectrum. Having said that, this brand is undoubtedly a leader in terms of competitive pricing, and we think there’s a good reason why people keep buying their doors!
Buying Guide For Exterior Doors
When deciding on a new exterior door, it's good to keep in mind the construction material, fittings and fixtures, and design.
Below, we'll be elaborating on these factors to help you find the best wood doors. Let's check it out.
Deciding what your door needs to be made of is, without a doubt, the most important consideration. What material your door is made from will determine its ability to offer security, functionality, and aesthetic appeal.
We'll be looking at wood, steel, fiberglass, and vinyl, in turn.
Although it's easily the most popular choice, wooden doors can vary greatly in terms of quality, depending on the type of wood being used.
Among your choices of wood, types are fir, spruce, pine, mahogany, oak, and maple. Pine, fir, and spruce are the cheapest options, while woods like mahogany and oak will set you back a little bit more.
Whichever type you choose, though, the beauty of wood is that it's almost endlessly customizable. You can choose from a variety of paint colors and finishes, which makes it easier to fit the door into your existing architecture type and decoration theme.
But of course, everything has downsides, as do wooden doors. The biggest drawback you are likely to face is the concern of durability: wooden doors are liable to warping, peeling, and sagging.
However, once again, it really depends on the kind of wood you've chosen, and whether the coating comes with weather-resistant elements. And generally, as long as you take care of your wooden door - i.e., by refinishing and repainting at regular intervals - it shouldn't be a very big concern.
Steel doors are arguably the best option for those that prioritize security. They are extremely sturdy, and of course, offer greater durability than wooden doors; they are also able to provide better insulation to your home. Furthermore, steel doors are usually cheaper than fiberglass or wood.
However, steel is, of course, prone to rusting, despite their efficiency. How they look might also be a matter of concern to you, especially if you're going for a more traditional look for whichever entryway you're placing the exterior door in.
This is basically a composite material that, compared to wood, offers far greater security. They're impressive in terms of durability as well; what's more, they require much less maintenance. They're customizable as well, with lots of painting, staining and glazing options available.
When it comes down to it, the absolute best exterior doors tend to be the ones made of fiberglass, because they have so few disadvantages (other than fading, not much else comes to mind).
Of course, this means that you can expect a fiberglass door to cost you much more than any other kind.
This is an ideal choice if you are looking for an exterior door for your terrace or patio. The cost is lower, as is the need for maintenance. You might suffer from a lack of options in terms of customizability, though.
Aluminum is a good, but more expensive, substitute for vinyl. They're strong and durable as well, and they usually come in wood-grain and smooth finishes with a rust-resistant coating.
Exterior doors tend to be sold inside their frames, meaning they are already hung inside the frame when you buy them. Also, the deadbolt and knob holes are also usually pre-drilled.
This means that if you're replacing an old exterior door, you're going to have to take some measurements. There's always the option to re-frame the entryway, but most people looking for the best exterior doors are looking to avoid that.
Fixtures and Fittings
By this, we mean hinges, handles, locks, and knobs.
As far as aesthetic appeal goes, you'll usually have some liberty as to how the fittings will look. What's important is to assess the security of the supplied fittings.
For example, does the door come with multi-point locks? What kind of locks is being supplied with the door?
You will, of course, have the option to customize the fixtures and fittings of your door if they are not to your liking, but the less hassle, the better, right? Do your research properly!
How energy-efficient is your new exterior door? The answer will usually depend upon the material you choose, as we've seen (steel and fiberglass doors tend to offer higher insulation relative to wooden ones).
Having said that, it's good to know how the insulation capability of a door is measured.
A good way to test this is to check out the fittings and frame of the door (more on that below). Does it have a tight frame? Does it come outfitted with insulating glass? Generally, the quickest way of checking whether the door fits these criteria is to see whether it has an Energy Star qualification.
However, when it comes down to it, it's good to remember that your exterior door won't ultimately do much in terms of saving energy; additionally, consider the fact that the easier way for heat to get out is through leaks and not the door itself.
Rails and Stiles
Applicable only to wooden doors, this refers to the vertical and horizontal components found in the door's bracing. When shopping for wooden doors, look for rails and stiles made of laminated wood; they resist warping more than solid-wood rails.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is the best construction material for an exterior door?
Wood is a reliable option, as it's durable and also offers variety in terms of aesthetic value. However, fiberglass is undoubtedly the best option in terms of quality and functionality, although it will set you back a higher amount.
2. Which construction material provides the best insulation for an exterior door?
Steel and fiberglass are ideal choices if you want your door to provide higher insulation. How tightly the frame fits (no matter the material) is also a good measure.
3. Should I add a glass panel to my steel door?
Steel doors offer reliable resistance to the elements and are a much more energy-efficient choice than other types, but a glass panel undercuts its ability to do that. And, of course, it'll cost you extra, so plan accordingly.
4. Will my exterior door come with a frame?
Some will and some won't; furthermore, holes for knobs locks might not be pre-drilled either.
5. What is the best front door for the money?
Although we love all the doors we’ve reviewed today, our ETO Doors selection is undoubtedly going to give you the best bang for your buck.
So that concludes our reviews of the best exterior doors currently on the market.
It’s understandable if you still haven’t made a choice, give the range of options—but we’d definitely suggest considering the BGW mahogany.
For those with a smaller budget, the ETO Doors door is undoubtedly extremely well-made for an unbeatable price.
Whichever you choose, we hope your doors are always secure, durable, and beautiful. Good luck!