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Tips for Measuring for a New Utah Entry Door

There are several important steps to the process of installing any new entry or other exterior door, and one key area here is measurements. The proper measurements are vital for ensuring everything from door size to installation techniques, and if you’re performing your own measurements for a new door, knowing how to do so is very important.

At Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors, we’re here to offer a variety of exterior doors to clients throughout Utah, plus will be happy to assist with your measurement needs and related concepts if needed. Here are some simple tips we generally offer in this important area.

measuring new entry door

You Don’t Have to Do it Alone

For some home or building owners, measuring for a new door will be relatively simple and straightforward. For others, however, it can be more complicated, especially if you’re not really sure what you’re doing. Perhaps you have an injury or movement concern that limits your ability to take proper measurements. Maybe you’re dealing with an oddly shaped or positioned doorway.

In any case, it’s perfectly fine to ask for help from a friend, neighbor, or professional if you need it.

If this describes you or if you would simply feel better having someone else do the measuring to avoid any potential mistakes, then please don’t hesitate to contact our team. We’ll be happy to come out and measure for you, completely free of charge and with no obligation.

If you choose to move forward on your own, however, our next few sections will offer some basic tips.

What Tools Will You Need?

You’ll need a few simple tools and materials in order to measure for your new door correctly. A good quality tape measure is the most important tool, of course, but you’ll also need something to write with so that you can take note of your numbers, plus a level to make sure everything is nice and even. A pencil or pen is fine for taking notes, while a small bubble level can usually be found in most toolboxes.

You might also want to consider having a helper on hand when you measure, as this can make things go more quickly and smoothly.

Measure in Inches

Before we get to the actual measurement areas to focus on, it’s important to mention that you’ll want to take all measurements in inches. This is the standard unit of measurement in the door industry, so it will make things much easier when it comes time to order your new door.

Now, let’s move on and talk about the areas you’ll need to focus on when measuring.

Measuring Width First

As you may have guessed, the first important measurement to take is door width. Generally speaking, the approach that’s taken by most in the industry here is to measure from corner to corner of the door frame on the hinge side.

However, in some cases this may not give you an accurate reading, especially if the door frame itself is warped or angled in some way. If this is the case, then you’ll want to measure from one side of the door frame to the other instead and use that number as your width measurement.

In addition, it’s often good to measure door width in multiple different places just to be sure you have an accurate number. We recommend taking three width measurements total, then likely going with the widest one — there may be small imperfections in your door area that you’re not aware of, and this can help account for that.

Measuring Height Second

After measuring door width, the next focus area is door height. Once again, you’ll want to measure from corner to corner on the strike side of the door frame. You can also measure from the top of the door frame to the bottom, but this may not give you as accurate of a number if the frame itself is warped or angled.

As with width measurements, it’s also a good idea to take multiple height measurements and then use the largest one. Three measurements should suffice here as well, and then you can move on to the next focus area.

Door Thickness

Another very important element to consider here is door thickness. This is critical for making sure your new door will fit properly in the existing frame, and it’s generally recommended that you use the thinnest measurement possible just to be safe.

To measure door thickness, simply place your tape measure at the very top of the door on the hinge side and then measure straight down to the bottom. Once again, you can also measure from one side of the door to the other, but this isn’t always as accurate.

Once you have your door thickness measurement, be sure to write it down so that you don’t forget it later on.

Lock and Hinge Locations

Finally, you’ll also need to take note of the locations of your door’s lockset and hinges. This information will be vital when it comes time to install your new door, so be sure you measure carefully and take note of all the details.

To start, open your door and then look at the edge of it where the hinges are located. Measure from the top of the door down to the center of the top hinge, then write this number down. You’ll need to do the same thing for the bottom hinge as well.

Now, take a look at the door’s lockset area. Measure from the center of the doorknob straight up to the top of the door, then write this number down. You’ll also need to measure from the center of the deadbolt (or keyhole, if you don’t have a deadbolt) up to the top of the door.

Once you have all of these measurements, you should have everything you need to order your new entry door. Just be sure to double-check all of your numbers before placing your order, as even a small mistake can result in an improper fit.

For more on how to measure for any new entry or exterior door, or to learn about any of our window or door services in Utah, speak to the team at Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors today.

Hinged Vs Sliding Patio Doors for Your Home’s Needs

When it comes to choosing a patio door for any part of your home, there are a few templates that you might be considering. Two of the most well-known here, and which often serve as an “either/or” choice in this realm, are the hinged patio door and the sliding patio door.

At Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors, we’re proud to offer a huge selection of both interior and exterior doors to our clients, including high-end glass sliding doors and many other options. What are some of the differences between these two door types, what are the pros and cons of each, and how do you go about choosing between them? Here’s a basic primer.

hinged sliding patio doors

Basics on Hinged Patio Doors

As the name indicates, hinged patio doors are those that open on hinges like any other door in your home. There are typically two panels involved here, with one being stationary and the other opening outward (or inward, depending on how they’re hung).

There are a few different types of hinged patio door to consider if you’re going this route:

  • Single-hinged doors: Also known as French doors, these are the kind that typically have one stationary panel with another that opens outwards. These are known to be classic, sophisticated, and elegant, bringing an Old World charm to any home.
  • Double-hinged doors: Also called swinging or double French doors, these have two panels that both open outwards. These are great for larger doorways and can provide a real feeling of openness when you want to let some air and light into your home.
  • Folding doors: These hinged patio doors have multiple panels (usually at least four) that all fold up against each other when opened, much like accordion doors. These are a great option if you’re looking to really open up a space, as they can provide an unobstructed view and easy access.

Pros and Cons of Hinged Patio Doors

For those considering them, hinged patio doors have several major benefits associated with their use:

  • Full opening capability: One of the main advantages of hinged doors is that they can open up fully, giving you an unobstructed view and easy access to your patio or deck. This also helps anytime you need to move large items in or out of your home, as you won’t have to work around a fixed panel.
  • Better security: On the whole, hinged patio doors are also considered to be more secure than their sliding counterparts. This is because they’re more difficult to forced open from the outside, and they typically have stronger hardware overall.
  • Ease of repair: If anything does go wrong with a hinged door, it’s usually fairly easy to take care of. The hinges and other hardware are all readily accessible, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble making repairs as needed.

There are also a few potential drawbacks to be aware of before choosing hinged doors:

  • Size limitations: Because they need to swing open, hinged doors are typically limited in size. This can be an issue if you have a particularly large opening that you’re trying to cover.
  • Weather-related concerns: In areas with high winds, hinged doors can sometimes swing open on their own (or even get blown off entirely). If this is a concern in your area, it’s something to keep in mind.
  • Limited patio space: If you have limited space on your patio or deck, a hinged door may not be the best option. This is because they need room to swing open, so you’ll need to leave enough space clear around them to avoid any issues.

Basics on Sliding Patio Doors

Sliding patio doors, on the other hand, open by sliding along a track. These typically have two panels as well, with one panel fixed in place and the other able to slide open.

There are a few different types of sliding doors to choose from:

  • Basic sliding doors: These are the most common type of sliding patio door, and usually have two panels of equal size. One panel slides open to the side, revealing the fixed panel behind it.
  • Stacker doors: Also known as multi-slide doors, these have multiple panels that all slide open along a single track. These are great for larger openings and can really open up a space when you want to let some light and air in.

Pros and Cons of Sliding Patio Doors

Sliding doors are ideal for many settings, with several major benefits:

  • Contemporary and modern: For those looking for a more modern look, sliding doors are often the way to go. These can give your home a sleek and stylish look that hinged doors can’t always match.
  • Easy to open and close: Sliding doors are also very easy to open and close, especially if they’re equipped with the right handle. This can be helpful if you have young children or elderly family members who might have difficulty using a hinged door.
  • Space-saving: Sliding doors don’t need any extra space around them to open, which means they’re ideal for small patios and decks. This also makes them a great option if you have limited space in your yard overall.
  • Screening and ventilation: Most sliding doors, especially on patios, come with some type of screening. This can help keep bugs and other pests out of your home while still allowing you to enjoy the fresh air.

There are also a few potential drawbacks associated with sliding doors:

  • Security concerns: Because they slide open, it’s possible for someone to force them open from the outside if they’re not properly secured. This is something to keep in mind if you’re considering this type of door for your home, and you should be sure to secure them properly.
  • Weather-related concerns: In areas with high winds, sliding doors can sometimes be blown off their tracks. This is less of a concern with newer doors that are properly installed and secured, but it’s something to be aware of nonetheless.
  • Harder to clean: It can sometimes be difficult to clean the outside surface of a sliding door, especially if it’s in a hard-to-reach spot. This is something to keep in mind if you’re considering this type of door for your home.

For more on the choice between hinged and sliding patio doors, or to learn about any of our window or door options, speak to the team at Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors today.

How to Conduct a Search for a New Front Door

Of the many doors likely present in your home, few are as important or as often-considered as the front door. From providing security and temperature control to serving as a major part of your home’s aesthetics and curb appeal, front doors are worth taking the time to think about if you need a replacement — and there are some simple ways to go about this process.

At Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors, we’re happy to offer a wide range of exterior door products for all our Utah clients, with front doors serving as some of the most common door types we assist our customers with. If you’ve decided now is the time to replace your front door, or if you’re part of a new home construction and get a say in selecting the new front door, what are the key elements to consider during your search? Here’s a basic primer.

how search new front door

Knowing Your Front Door Material Options

First up, it pays to have some basic knowledge on the different options out there for front door materials. Here are some of the most commonly-used today:

  • Wood: A classic front door material, wood provides a wide range of design options and can be stained or painted to achieve the look you desire. It’s also fairly energy-efficient, plus it provides good insulating properties. One downside to wood doors is that they require more upkeep than some of the other options, such as steel.
  • Fiberglass: A less common but still viable option for a front door, fiberglass-constructed doors can be made to look like wood — which may be a good choice if you like the look of wood but not the required upkeep. Fiberglass doors are also low-maintenance and don’t require frequent repainting or staining like wood doors.
  • Steel: Steel doors are on the rise in popularity, thanks to their durability, maintenance ease and energy efficiency. They’re also quite affordable, which makes them a good option for budget-conscious homeowners.

While there are other front door materials out there, these three make up the vast majority of what you’ll see on the market today.

Features to Consider

While you’ll naturally be thinking about simple front door features like opening mechanisms and locks, these are far from your only choices in this realm. Some others include:

  • Decorative glass: If you want to let in natural light and/or create a more inviting entryway, adding decorative glass to your front door is a great way to achieve this. Just be sure the glass is impact-resistant if you live in an area that sees bad weather or high winds.
  • Energy efficiency: If you’re interested in making your home more energy-efficient, you can do so by selecting a front door with good insulating properties. This is especially important if you live in an area with extreme temperatures, as a well-insulated front door will help keep your home’s interior temperature more consistent.
  • Security: One of the most important functions of a front door is to provide security for your home, so be sure to select a door that comes with a good locking system. You may also want to consider a door with a peephole or security camera, especially if you live in an urban area.
  • Curb appeal: Finally, don’t forget that your front door makes up a major part of your home’s curb appeal. As such, be sure to select a door that meshes well with the overall look of your home’s exterior. This includes everything from the door’s color to its style and overall design.

Balancing Aesthetics and Functionality

As we noted at the start of this blog, front doors are important for both functional and aesthetic reasons. When conducting your search for a new front door, be sure to keep both of these factors in mind.

For instance, if you live in an area with extreme temperatures, energy efficiency should be one of your top priorities. However, you also don’t want to sacrifice curb appeal in the name of function, so be sure to find a door that strikes a good balance between the two.

The same can be said for security features. While it’s important to have a front door that comes with a good locking system, you also don’t want your home to look like a fortress. Again, finding a balance is key.

Consider Other Doors You’ve Seen

There’s nothing whatsoever wrong with getting inspiration for your new front door from other doors you’ve seen and liked. If you see a door that you really like the look of, snap a picture of it or jot down the address so you can look into it further.

There are a few different ways to go about this. First, if you know the homeowners, you can simply ask them about the door. They may be able to tell you where they got it and how much it cost.

If you don’t know the homeowners or if they’re not available, you can try looking up the address online. This will likely bring up information on the home, including who the current owner is. You can then attempt to contact them through social media or other channels to see if they’re open to talking about their door.

Of course, you can also just take inspiration from the door without actually finding out any information about it. If you see a door that you like but can’t track down any information on, simply use it as a starting point for your own search.

Budgeting Properly

Finally, as you move through this process, it’s vital to ensure that you’re budgeting properly. Doors can vary widely in price, so it’s important to have a good idea of how much you’re willing and able to spend before beginning your search.

Once you have a budget in mind, be sure to stick to it. It’s easy to get carried away when looking at doors, but if you don’t stay within your budget, you may end up spending more than you’re comfortable with.

For more on how to go about conducting your search for a new front door, or to learn about any of our doors, windows or other services to clients throughout Utah, speak to the staff at Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors today.

Value of Vinyl Windows for Many Utah Clients

As a modern home or building owner, you have a number of quality options when it comes to selecting the material for your window frames and setup. Near the top of any such list for many in this position: Vinyl, which holds a number of specific benefits.

At Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors, we’re happy to offer our Utah clients a wide selection of window materials, including the best vinyl window options in town. What makes up a vinyl window, and what are some of the key reasons many home or building owners prefer them for their window replacement or installation needs? Here’s a basic primer.

value vinyl windows clients

Vinyl Window Basics

For your basic information, vinyl windows refer to those with frames made out of polyvinyl chloride, or PVC. This is a very common material, also used in everything from piping to siding, that is both strong and weather-resistant. It’s also easy to clean and maintain over the years. You can find vinyl windows in a number of different styles, colors and designs to fit your specific needs – they’re one of the most versatile window frame materials on the market, which is certainly one of their key benefits.

What are some of the others? Read on.

Durability

One of the single biggest reasons to select vinyl windows for your home or building is that they are incredibly durable. Unlike other window frame materials that may crack, warp or otherwise degrade over time due to sun damage, moisture or other factors, vinyl windows stand up extremely well to such wear and tear. They’re built to last for decades in even the most challenging weather conditions, making them a great long-term investment for your property.

Low Maintenance

Vinyl windows are also very easy to care for and maintain over the years. As noted, they’re simple to clean – a quick wipe down with a damp cloth is usually all it takes to keep them looking like new.

They don’t require any special treatment or care, and you’ll never have to worry about painting or otherwise refinishing them to keep them looking their best. In short, they’re about as low-maintenance as window frames can be – another key selling point for many property owners.

Energy Efficiency

With more and more homeowners looking for sustainable, eco-friendly ways to run their properties, energy efficiency has become a major selling point for many different types of products and materials – windows included.

Vinyl windows are some of the most energy-efficient on the market, thanks to their tight seals and insulation. This can save you money on your heating and cooling bills year-round, and help to make your property more sustainable in the long run.

Weather Resistance

Windows are a barrier between the interior of your home or building and the outdoors, so it’s important that they be able to withstand all kinds of weather conditions.

Vinyl windows are built to do just that, thanks to their durability and tight seals. They can stand up to strong winds, driving rain and even snow and ice, making them a great choice for properties who experience heavy elements. Vinyl is heat-resistant, water-resistant and even UV-resistant, meaning your windows will keep looking great for years to come – even if they’re constantly exposed to the elements.

Soundproof Qualities

Insulation matters with windows, and not only for temperature-related reasons. Vinyl windows can also provide a great barrier against unwanted noise from the outside world, thanks to their tight seals and soundproofing qualities.

If you live in a busy area or near a high-traffic street, for instance, investing in vinyl windows can help to reduce the amount of noise that comes into your property on a day-to-day basis. This can be a major selling point for many different types of homeowners and property owners.

Affordability

It’s worth noting that vinyl windows are very affordable compared to other types of window frames on the market. They offer an excellent value for the price, and can be a great way to get high-quality, durable windows without breaking the bank.

Investing in vinyl windows is a great way to improve your property without spending a fortune – something that’s certainly worth considering if you’re on a tight budget.

Improving Property Value

Down related lines, it’s also worth noting that investing in vinyl windows is a great way to improve the value of your property.

Vinyl windows are seen as a high-quality, desirable addition by many homebuyers and renters, which means that they can help to increase the value of your property should you ever decide to sell or rent it out. Even if you don’t have any such immediate plans, it’s still a good selling point to keep in mind.

Easy to Install

For many property owners, the ease of installation is another key selling point when it comes to vinyl windows. They’re very easy to install compared to other types of windows, and can be a great do-it-yourself project for many different types of homeowners.

If you’re not confident in your ability to install them yourself, though, don’t worry – vinyl windows are also very easy for professionals to install, and shouldn’t take more than a few hours to get set up.

Aesthetic Appeal

Finally, it’s worth mentioning that vinyl windows simply look great. They come in a wide variety of styles and designs to suit any taste, and can really help to improve the curb appeal of your property.

Whether you’re looking for sleek and modern frames or more traditional designs, you’re sure to find vinyl windows that suit your needs. And because they’re so easy to clean and maintain, you can be confident that they’ll always look their best.

These are just a few of the specific reasons that you might want to consider investing in vinyl windows for your property. For more on this, or to learn about any of our window installation or door services to clients throughout Utah, speak to the team at Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors today.

Indicators Interior Doors in Your Home Require Replacement

Doors are some of the most important components in a given home, serving vital basic roles, but they also take quite a beating over time. Even interior doors that aren’t exposed to the elements on a regular basis will take plenty of impacts, dents and other forms of damage over time, this in addition to simple wear-and-tear — and there may come a time where such doors need to be replaced.

At Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors, we’re proud to offer Utah clients a wide range of interior door options, including everything from solid hardwood to hardboard, MDF or various other materials. We’ll also help you determine when the time is right for a door replacement — here are several signs that may indicate such a need, especially if more than one of them are taking place simultaneously.

indicators interior doors replacement

Loss of Function

The simplest and often most obvious sign that a door needs to be replaced is if it’s no longer opening and closing correctly, or if it’s become difficult or impossible to operate. This can be due to a variety of factors, including extensive damage or just plain wear and tear, so it’s important to get the issue checked out as soon as possible.

There may be some cases where a minor issue is causing this problem, one that can be repaired without a full replacement — but if it’s clear that the door is past its prime and needs to be replaced, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. In many cases, you’ll be able to tell if this is the case because several of the other issues we’ll go over here are also present.

Major Physical Damage

In other cases, simply looking at the door will reveal clear signs that replacement is in order. This could manifest as deep dents, extensive water damage, warping or any other major physical deformities. Again, these could be due to a variety of factors, including improper installation, extreme weather conditions or even an accident.

In addition, if the door has been painted multiple times over the years, it may start to chip and peel, exposing the material beneath — and in most cases, this is an indication that a full replacement is necessary.

Window Frames With Damage

While windows on doors is far less common for interior doors than for exterior options, these doors are used in some cases — and in such situations, damage to the window frame should also be considered when determining whether a replacement is necessary.

If the frame is severely damaged, warped or rotting, it can be difficult or impossible to find a door that will fit correctly and operate as it should — so in these cases, a full replacement is often the best solution.

Outdated Door Type

In other situations, your current door might not be in too much disrepair — but could simply be outdated, meaning they no longer serve a purpose in modern homes and typically are not produced any longer.

In these cases, a full replacement with an updated door type is often the best solution, as it can give your home a fresh and new look while also addressing any underlying issues with the old door.

Major Drafts

One role interior doors play in a home: Preventing drafts from moving through the home freely and impacting multiple areas. Drafts can cause a variety of issues, from making it difficult to keep a home at a comfortable temperature to increasing your energy consumption and costing you more money in the long run.

If you’re experiencing drafts coming in through your interior doors, it’s often an indication that those doors need to be replaced. Some interior doors, for instance, simply won’t stay closed and sealed properly and allow air to leak in, while others may not be as well-insulated as they should be.

If you’re noticing an increase in your energy bills, or if it’s simply been difficult to keep your home comfortable lately, this could be a sign that a replacement is necessary.

Small Issues Becoming Large Issues

Have certain small, minor concerns on your door recently begun to cause bigger and bigger problems? This is often a sign that the door can’t handle them anymore and needs to be replaced.

For instance, a small crack in the door may start to let in moisture and cause the wood to rot over time, or a broken hinge may make it difficult or impossible to close the door correctly. If you’re seeing issues like this crop up and they’re only getting worse, it’s likely time for a replacement.

Door Noise

In still other situations, the telltale sign that your door is wearing down will be noise. This can manifest in a few different ways, such as the door squeaking when opening and closing, rattling when impacted or tapping when winds are high. All of these sounds are typically indicative of underlying issues with the door that need to be addressed, whether that means repairing or replacing the door altogether.

Down similar lines, doors that used to provide quality sound barriers between rooms may begin to let sound through more easily over time. If you’re experiencing any of these issues, it’s likely that your interior door requires replacement. We can help you figure out the best course of action to take, so don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Safety Issues

Finally, if any part of how an interior door is operating or connected to its frame is creating safety risks in your home, it’s time for a replacement. This could include things like doorknobs that are difficult to grip or handles that are too high up for children or seniors to reach easily.

In these cases, a full replacement is the best way to ensure that everyone in your home can be safe and comfortable using the door.

If you’re noticing any of these signs, it’s likely that your interior door requires replacement. We can help you figure out the best course of action to take, so don’t hesitate to get in touch. Contact the pros at Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors today to learn about your options for new doors, plus how we’ll assist you in this process from start to finish.

Important Components That Make Up a Front Door

If you’re remodeling a home or building a new home, front door selection will be an important step in this process. When you’re making this selection, however, it’s important to realize that just selecting the door slab itself is only one part of this process — there are actually several important components that make up a front door, and you may have options in each of these areas depending on your needs.

At Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors, we’re proud to offer a huge range of exterior doors to clients throughout Utah, including a variety of front door options to meet all your practical and aesthetic needs alike. What are the important components of a front door to be aware of, both in general and for your purchasing needs? Here’s a primer.

important components front door

Door Materials

While the door slab itself isn’t the only choice you’ll be making here, it’s likely the most important. Generally speaking, today’s clients choose from one of three materials for their front doors:

  • Wood: Wood is a traditional material, bringing with it the classic aesthetic of home elegance. As long as you take care of the wood properly, it will look great for years to come. It’s strong and durable, and it’s easy to customize with paint or varnish. For example, you can stain it for a very on-trend ebony look, or simply paint it an uplifting color to help your home cheer up even on dreary winter days.
  • Metal: Generally in the form of aluminum or steel, metal front doors are strong and durable, much like wood. These are also easy to paint or varnish when you want a different look, although you may need to take special precautions to protect the metal surface against rust or oxidation if you do this.
  • Fiberglass: Fiberglass is a newer material that is growing in popularity. It’s even more durable than metal and it doesn’t corrode, which makes it an ideal choice for exterior doors exposed to the elements.

Stiles and Rails

When talking about doors, stiles refer to vertical components and rails refer to horizontal components. Stiles and rails are usually made of the same material as your door slab — for example, if you’ve chosen wood, there might be decorative wooden stiles on either side.

Some materials may have different options for stiles and rails, however. For instance, metal doors may have steel or aluminum stiles with galvanized surfaces to resist corrosion. Fiberglass doors may have fiberglass or aluminum stiles.

Glass Considerations

Many modern front doors also contain glass of some sort, allowing in light and warmth. The most common glass inserts are often made of tempered glass, which is extremely resistant to shattering even if it’s broken. However, more traditional styles may have leaded or stained glass inserts instead.

The main consideration here is that the design of your front door matches up with the style you want for your home as a whole. For example, if you’ve already chosen a Victorian style for your home, choosing an elaborate stained glass insert will make your front door fit this design beautifully.

Locks

From a practical standpoint, few components of the front door are more important than the locks. Generally speaking, there are three locking mechanisms used for doors today:

  • Cylindrical lock: The traditional locking mechanism, applied through a hole in the stile of the door, the cylindrical lock provides a simple but effective way to lock the door.
  • Mortise lock: A lock that’s housed in a recess within the door, and this type adds some security to the traditional look.
  • Multi-point lock: A three-point locking mechanism that’s attached to the door’s edge, and is the best option for both security and for keeping a tight door seal against weatherstripping.

In addition, you’ll have a huge range of lock styles to consider. Knobs, thumb latches, handle latches and even electronic keypads are all possibilities you might want to consider — your personal preference will typically be the largest factor here, though certain practical elements may come into play as well.

Hinges

Also important for the door’s basic operations are its hinges, which attach the door to its frame and allow it to swing freely. As a general rule, most exterior doors will have two hinges on either side of the door — one for each stile, and this provides the best balance of stability and ease of movement.

In addition to standard hinges, you may want to consider “stay-put” designs for your front door. These function very similarly to standard hinges, but they won’t allow your door to open all the way — instead, the door will stop at a certain point where you can easily reach through and unlock it.

The number of hinges may also affect what lock(s) you choose for your front door. For instance, if you want a multi-point locking mechanism, you should try to match this with a multi-point hinge design as well. In particular, look for locks and hinges that are designed to work together — poorly matched options might not function properly after you install them.

Weather Proofing

There are also a couple weather proofing components that may be present on a front door, including:

  • Weatherstripping: The main component used to create a seal against the weather, there are two main types of weatherstripping: foam and rubber. Foam is more durable but is somewhat less effective for long term use, while rubber is best for keeping out drafts in colder climates.
  • Door sweep: This item connects to the underside of your door, and it acts as a secondary barrier against drafts. In fact, if you’re looking for the best weatherproofing option, this item is probably the best choice.

Door Sill and Frame

Finally, sitting underneath the door itself is the sill, which protects your home from water or other dampness by providing an elevated barrier in front of the bottom. The most common material for this is aluminum, though you may also find fiberglass doors that have a sill made of the same material.

And of course, no door is complete without a frame, or jamb, to attach it to. Most exterior doors are framed with wood, though vinyl jamb materials are becoming increasingly common.

For more on the important components that make up a front door, or to learn about any of our exterior door materials or accessories, speak to the team at Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors today.

Specialty Utah Window Shape Options and Considerations

While the majority of windows you might be considering for your home come in a few standard shapes like rectangles, squares and circles, there are also unique window shapes out there for those who want to go against the grain. Often available in customized formats, specialty window shapes can add both practicality and style to many areas of the home — and it’s important to know your options if you’re going this route.

At Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors, we’re proud to offer a huge range of new window options to our Utah clients, from vinyl and wood-clad windows to options like glass block windows and many others. We’re also happy to work with you for various custom specialty window shapes you might desire, with a virtually limitless range of possibilities at your disposal. What are some of the shape types you might consider for specialty windows, why are those shape types potentially beneficial, and which important areas should you be keeping in mind when it comes to specialty windows depending on their frame type? Here’s a basic primer.

specialty window shape options

Common Specialty Window Shapes

Specialty window shapes are available in both standard and custom designs depending on your needs, and these window types offer a number of practical and decorative benefits. Here are some of the most common specialty shapes available, along with some of the reasons home or building owners choose them:

  • Elliptical or half-elliptical: The sleek, rounded shapes of elliptical windows are eye-catching, and for good reason. These options help you maximize the view out your window, while minimizing how much area is lost to the frame. They also offer a unique look that can be especially visually or aesthetically pleasing in some settings. They’re available in both full and half-elliptical shapes to help you maximize your view and work within any room design.
  • Modified rectangle: Referring to a design where a standard rectangular window will be modified in certain sections to make it arched a modified rectangle window can be an excellent choice for those with a unique design vision. They’re also sometimes called A-frame windows for their distinctive triangular shape.
  • Arch head: Available in full and partial styles, the arch head of an arched window frame is a signature look that can really make your home stand out from the rest. This type of frame offers significant natural light due to its special shape, and it works beautifully for both traditional and contemporary design styles alike.
  • Trapezoid: A sort of halfway design between a rectangle and an arch, trapezoid windows have sloping sides that help create a distinctive look for your home. They’re available in a range of sizes and shapes, making them a versatile option for those who want to incorporate special window types into their home without going too wild with their design.
  • Springline: The Springline design is similar to the modified rectangle, but with more rounded sections on each side for a more fluid look. Like the modified rectangle, Springline windows can be customized to fit any room design and help you maximize natural light flow.
  • Pentagon: As a design that’s typically used for smaller windows, pentagon windows add a distinctive look while maximizing the amount of natural light that comes into your home. In some cases they can come with an exterior or interior grill for added security, and they’re also sometimes available in half-size options.
  • Octagon or hexagon: Windows that fit these shapes will help you maximize view while maximizing natural light. They’re available in a range of sizes and shape options, and offer the panoramic views you’d expect from specialty windows.
  • Circular: Full circular windows can be an excellent way to let in lots of natural light into your home — or simply to add a distinctive look if that’s the style you’re going for. Circular windows are available in custom shapes and sizes to suit any window need, and can be perfect for maximizing light flow or adding a distinctive touch.
  • Skylights: Skylights are another excellent way to maximize natural light flow into your home, and they also work well with many different design styles. Skylights come in a range of unique shapes, which means they’ll fit into your home while delivering the design you want.

This is not an exhaustive list of specialty window shapes — there are many others depending on your desires. These are just some of the most well-known.

Our next several sections will go over some important considerations to make if you’re choosing specialty window shapes, based on the window frame material being used.

Wood Specialty Windows

Whether you’re looking for pure wood or aluminum-clad wood, specialty windows add a touch of warmth and beauty to your home. You can even get wood specialty options that help you maximize natural light with special designs. These materials should not be confused with vinyl, which often looks similar but is more practical for colder climates.

Vinyl Specialty Windows

As we just noted, vinyl windows are the practical option if you live in a cold climate. They’re also available in a variety of different specialty shapes, with high-grade vinyl frames that are welded to reduce both sound and heat loss.

Aluminum Specialty Windows

Like vinyl windows, aluminum specialty windows are available in a variety of different shapes and styles. They can also be custom built for your unique window needs, and they’re often the best option if you want a distinctive look as part of your home decor.

Fiberglass Specialty Windows

Finally, fiberglass specialty windows are built to last — and they also come in a range of different shapes. They’re less costly than other options, but still deliver an attractive look that helps you maximize natural light flow into your home.

For more on your options when selecting specialty window shapes, or to learn about any of our window or door products or services in Utah, speak to the staff at Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors today.

Material Options for Your Front Door Replacement

Among all the doors in your home, the front door is often considered the most prominent and important. It’s vital for both home aesthetics and practical needs, and among those looking for a new front door, choosing the proper material to meet your needs is important.

At Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors, we’re proud to provide a wide range of door replacement services to clients throughout Utah, from fiberglass doors to wood, steel, aluminum and numerous other high-quality materials. We’ve helped a variety of clients identify the ideal front door material for their home based on several factors, and we’re here to do the same for you. What are the important elements to be considering when choosing your new front door material, and which materials are available to you? Here’s a basic primer.

material options front door replacement

Factors to Evaluate

As you’re looking through your options for front door material, here are some of the basic elements to consider:

  • General costs: For obvious reasons, cost is an important consideration when choosing a front door material. How much are you willing to spend on a new front door, and what are the associated costs?
  • Maintenance: All front door materials require some level of maintenance in order to look their best and perform well over time. Some materials, like wood, may require more frequent attention than others, so be sure to factor in the necessary maintenance costs and time commitments.
  • Energy efficiency: A high-quality front door can play an important role in your home’s energy efficiency, so be sure to consider this when making your selection. Some materials, like fiberglass, are particularly good at blocking drafts and keeping your home comfortable all year round.
  • Style: Of course, you want to choose a front door material that communicates the right style for your home. While some materials, like fiberglass, are more modern and sleek in appearance, other materials can complement traditional or classic looks.
  • Window or solid: You’ll also need to choose whether you want a glass window or a solid material. In some cases, you may prefer the style of one over the other, but keep in mind that glass windows can offer better views and access to natural light.

Our next several sections will go over the top materials available to you when selecting a front door.

Wood Front Doors

For those looking for a classic aesthetic for their homes that also offers a high degree of durability and energy efficiency, wood is a great choice. Wood front doors are available in a variety of different species depending on your needs and preferences, with popular options including redwood, cedar and pine. All three species offer fantastic energy-efficiency benefits while also serving as terrific barriers to keep drafts out, but all three can also be prone to rot and decay over time if not properly maintained.

Among the major benefit to wood front doors is that they’re very attractive, offering a warm, natural look that can work well with either traditional or modern home styles. Depending on the species you choose, individual pieces of wood may also showcase unique patterns and grain details to deliver even more style.

The main downside of a wood front door is that it requires more maintenance than some other materials, including regular paint and stain touchups in order to keep it looking its best over time. It’s also a bit less energy efficient due to the presence of gaps between each slat or board, though this can be mitigated with basic insulation measures.

If you’re looking for a classic and attractive front door material that also offers high durability and energy efficiency, wood is hard to beat. Just be sure to factor in the necessary maintenance time and costs, as well as the proper installation procedures, if this is the material you decide on.

Fiberglass Front Doors

Another quality option here, one that offers a combination of excellent performance and low maintenance, is the fiberglass exterior door. As the name implies, fiberglass is made of layers of glass strands built around a basic mesh frame, which can be finished in either woodgrain or smooth styles.

As several consumer reviews point out​​, there are​​ two major benefits to this option: durability and ease-of-maintenance. Fiberglass exterior doors are resistant to rot, rust and other damage that can wear down wood doors over time, especially if they’re frequently exposed to harsh seasonal weather.

Fiberglass is also a great choice when it comes to ease of maintenance, since no paint or stain touchups are required in order for the door to look its best. While individual pieces of fiberglass may scratch or dent over time, they can easily be replaced without affecting the rest of the door.

One downside to fiberglass is that it doesn’t have quite the same level of warmth and attractiveness as natural wood, so it might not be the best choice if you’re going for a traditional look. However, you can easily mitigate this by choosing from various forms of grained fiberglass, which have the look of traditional wood finishes at a much lower cost.

Aluminum Clad Front Doors

This form of door refers to one that’s made of wood on the inside, but then is coated with a thin layer of aluminum on the outside. This offers a number of benefits, including protection against the weather and lower maintenance requirements.

Wooden doors are prone to weathering and warping when exposed to rain, snow and other elements, but an aluminum clad door can help mitigate these issues. The aluminum also helps to reflect heat away from the door and inside of the home, keeping it cooler in the summer and reducing energy costs.

The main drawback associated with aluminum clad doors is that they tend to be less durable than other materials, particularly when it comes to high-traffic situations. If you’re looking for a door that can handle heavy foot traffic or commercial application, aluminum clad isn’t the best choice.

But for a residential home, this option can be a great way to combine the appearance and feel of wood with the practical benefits of aluminum. Just be sure to factor in the cost, as they tend to be more expensive than other materials.

Steel Front Doors

Finally, one of the most durable and low-maintenance front door materials available is steel. This option can be made in a variety of ways, including solid steel, steel with a wood veneer or even fiberglass over steel.

As you might expect, one of the biggest benefits of a steel front door is its durability. It’s extremely resistant to weathering, warping and other types of damage, making it an excellent choice for those who live in very harsh climates or are looking for extra security.

This door also offers excellent energy efficiency, though this depends on the type of steel you choose. Some options may be more energy efficient than others. However, all tend to fall well within the range of comparable wood and fiberglass doors.

One downside to steel is that it can be quite heavy, so you’ll need to make sure your doorframe can handle the weight. It also doesn’t have the same level of insulation as some other materials, so if energy efficiency is a top priority for you, steel might not be the best choice.

For more on the various front door materials you have available if you’re looking for a replacement, or to learn about any of our window or high-end door services, speak to the staff at Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors today.

Factors Influencing New Window Energy Efficiency

There are several different value areas you may be considering when choosing new windows for your home or building, and energy efficiency is often at or near the top of this list. Not only will energy-efficient windows make your home more comfortable by limiting temperature loss, they will also save you money on utility costs while also limiting your overall carbon footprint in the process.

At Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors, we’re proud to offer a wide variety of window installation options to our clients, including everything from new construction windows to window replacements for any need you may have. When evaluating your options for new windows, what are the most important variables to consider within the realm of energy efficiency that will ensure you make a good choice in this area? Here’s a rundown.

factors window energy efficiency

Glass Efficiency

Likely the single most important factor to be keeping in mind as you move through this process is the glass efficiency rating of any given window – that is, the rate at which the glass is able to block heat transfer. This is typically measured in terms of U-value . Newer construction windows will generally have a rating between 0.30 and 0.40, while older/replacement windows come in closer to 0.50 or higher. As you may have guessed, the lower the U-value, the more efficient the window will be at blocking heat transfer, with 0.30 or lower being ideal.

To help illustrate just how important this variable is in judging a given window’s efficiency, consider that a 500-square foot room filled to 70% capacity with high-efficiency windows may save you as much as $50 per month on your utility bill in the winter and $40 in the summer when compared to a window with a rating of 0.75 or greater.

The primary way to ensure you get efficient glass is by going with at least double-pane glass, if not triple-pane , in your windows. Triple-pane windows will generally have two layers of glass with a layer of argon gas in between to further help insulate the unit and block heat transfer. It’s rare to see single-pane glass used today, and you should almost never do so if energy efficiency is a top priority.

Glass Coatings

In addition to the glass itself, window efficiency is impacted heavily by the selection of the proper glass coatings for the unit. These coatings, which typically consist of an outside coating and an inside coating, each serve to enhance the other in helping achieve maximum energy efficiency results.

One such coating is Low-E glass, a thin layer of metal that’s permanently bonded onto both sides of the glass while it’s still in molten form. Low-E glass serves to reflect heat away from the room in summer, helping to keep it cooler inside. In winter, Low-E glass defuses solar radiation, which heats up the window’s surface but not the air trapped between the window and its frame – thus insulating that space without any loss of light or other outside-world visibility.

Along with Low-E glass, a company known as 3M manufactures a product called 3M™ Solar Gard which is applied to the inside of windows to help block unwanted solar radiation from entering your home. This coating can be used on its own or in conjunction with Low-E glass for even greater energy efficiency results.

Window Installation

Another major variable in the energy efficiency of your new windows: The quality of their installation and how the windows are actually anchored in your home. The last thing you want is for air to leak around or even through your new windows, which can be referred to as infiltration, and will inevitably lead (over time) to significant energy losses.

If you’re planning window replacements, it’s important to make sure this job is carried out by professionals like ours, who have the tools, expertise and know-how to ensure your windows are properly installed. As professional window contractors with years of experience in this area, we’re here to answer any questions you may have about the energy efficiency of our products or installation methods.

If you work with less reputable entities or individuals, on the other hand, you risk not just having windows that are of subpar quality, but also inferior installation practices. This can lead to the aforementioned air leakage issues, which will invariably decrease your energy efficiency over time – simply because it allows more of the heating or cooling you’re trying to keep inside your home to escape outside of it instead.

Window Frame Construction

The frame of the window also plays a huge role in how efficient it is. This is where companies that are more concerned with cutting costs than actually producing good, efficient windows will often cut corners, resulting in negative energy efficiency consequences over time.

Ideally, your window installer should have multiple window frame material options, including wood, fiberglass, vinyl and aluminum. Each of these materials has its own advantages and disadvantages, but it’s ultimately up to you to decide which frame is the best fit for your needs. Some may be better in certain climates or geographic areas than others, so it’s ultimately important you choose wisely based on where your home is located.

Region

Speaking of region, it’s the final factor that will often be important to consider when choosing new windows. If you live in a climate with extreme temperature swings, your needs likely vary from those of someone who resides somewhere with more moderate weather conditions throughout the year.

Warm and cold climates each call for different window and even window frame materials, which is why we often recommend looking to professional window contractors like ours if you’re unsure about which material to choose for optimal efficiency. We can’t wait to sit down with you and evaluate your needs and the windows you currently have. Our job is to help you get beautiful new windows that are also energy efficient – for a reasonable price, too!

For more on the important factors that influence window efficiency and how to prioritize them, or to learn about any of our new door or window installation services, speak to the pros at Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors today.

Why Wood-Clad Windows Might be Ideal for Your Utah Needs

There are several materials available if you’re looking for high-quality replacement windows, and one option that combines traditional aesthetics with modern functionality is the wood-clad window. Using a classic look and texture but infusing additional practical capabilities makes these window options ideal for many homeowners.

At Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors, we’re happy to offer a wide selection of wood-clad windows to clients throughout Utah. What exactly is a wood-clad window, why is this format so popular today, and why might these be the right choice for your window replacement needs? Here’s a primer.

wood-clad windows ideal Utah

Wood-Clad Window Basics

For those unfamiliar with the material, wood-clad windows are those that use traditional wood for their interior surfacing, but then aluminum on the outside for additional protection and performance. This allows the traditional look of wood to shine through, while increasing durability and weather resistance in one fell swoop.

It’s kind of like taking a classic car that you love, but then adding some fuel-efficient tires to really increase your day-to-day enjoyment – an analogy that will make sense once we go through all the specific benefits of wood-clad windows, which follow in our subsequent sections.

Simple Aesthetics

First and foremost, wood-clad windows are some of the most beautiful windows on the market today. Using real wood for the interior surfacing gives these windows a classic and inviting look that will add appeal and comfort to your home’s interior, while also increasing its value.

Many people who live in historic homes or homes designed with traditional aesthetics prefer their windows to match this historical theme, and wood-clad replacements can be used to create that same effect. They are also perfect for homes in more modern styles where the owners want to get rid of brittle plastic windows but don’t want to give up on the exterior design elements that give them curb appeal.

Durability and Efficiency

Along with providing a classic look, wood-clad replacements are also some of the most durable and energy-efficient windows on the market today. The exterior aluminum layer helps protect the wood from damage, while also deflecting heat to keep the internal temperature consistent regardless of external weather conditions.

This means that during winter months, there is less chance for your wood interiors to crack or warp because of harsh temperatures, and it also means you have less work to do when trying to cool your home during the warmer months. Wood-clad replacements are energy efficient, easy to clean/maintain, and can even help reduce exterior noise for a more peaceful environment.

Noise Resistance

Did you know that in addition to helping with insulation and blocking temperature loss throughout the year, wood-clad windows also help reduce exterior noise inside your home? This is another example of how these replacements blend the most practical aspects with beautiful design, which can often lead to higher resale values for homeowners when it’s time to make a change.

Especially if your home sits near a source of noise, such as an airport, a highway or train lines, wood-clad replacements will help reduce the amount of noise inside your home to create a more peaceful living environment. You can leave them open in your bedroom when it’s time for bed and not have to worry about an obnoxiously loud truck going by outside, helping you get a better night’s sleep!

Sustainability

Perhaps best of all for some homeowners, wood-clad windows are extremely eco-friendly. Wood, as you may already be aware, is a renewable resource with an extremely low carbon footprint, which means it helps reduce your impact on the environment during every stage of its lifecycle.

While that’s already a great advantage of wood-clad replacements, it does not end there – since these windows are also made from aluminum, they’re perfect for LEED credits. The aluminum can be recycled an infinite amount of times without losing any quality, and that means you can add extra points to your LEED checklist when replacing all existing windows in your home with wood-clad replacements.

Customized Appearance

Because wood-clad windows can be either painted or stained quite easily, they can be personalized to match the style of your home while still adding exterior durability and energy efficiency. For instance, if you want to go with a black window frame but maintain the look of wood interiors, you could opt for stained windows while painting the exterior in either white or gray – an example that should make it easier to visualize how these replacements can be customized to your particular style preferences.

If you already have historical windows in your home that you’re replacing because of damage or wear-and-tear, wood-clad replacements actually make it quite easy for you to match the existing style. This means they won’t stick out like a sore thumb among your other windows and take away from the overall appeal of your home.

Return on Investment

ROI is a vital consideration for many homeowners replacing their windows, and wood-clad options do very well here also. They’re known to typically return up to 85% of the initial cost of installation over a 20-year period of time, thanks to their durability and energy efficiency.

This makes them one of the most durable replacement windows on the market today, able to withstand all kinds of natural disasters very well while also reducing your carbon footprint through heating/cooling costs. And because they perform so well in these two major areas, they also maintain their resale value when it’s time to move on to a new home.

So if you’re considering wood-clad replacements for your own needs, there are plenty of reasons why these windows are some of the best options available. For more on these or any of our other window or door options in Utah, contact the pros at Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors today.