Frequently Asked Questions

We know that finding the right door can be a process with a lot of questions. Below you will find frequently asked questions, and the answers that can help you on your way!

Q: How do I decide which entry door is best for me?

A: You need to narrow your choices down to those that can meet your needs. There are a few key things to consider before deciding on an entry door or door system:
• Do you prefer a painted or stained finish?
• How much exposure to the elements (e.g., sun, rain) does your entry see?
• How long will you be staying in your home?
• What style is appropriate for both the home and neighborhood you live in?
• What are your budget concerns?
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Q. What wood types are available?

A. Wood doors offer a natural warmth with a rich appearance to match any architectural style. Wood species include Douglas Fir, Knotty Alder, Mahogany, and many more. Door Store America's exterior wood doors will enrich the beauty of your home. We combine today's technology with yesterday's craftsmanship to bring you quality built, durable, beautiful solid wood doors at affordable prices.

Our multitude of species and design options, including modern entry doors and rustic doors, allow you to find entry doors and front doors that will compliment your home or office and enhance your décor. Our solid wood exterior doors are available in raised panel, flat panel, and solid flush doors. Choose one of our many designs, modify a design, or send us your own unique style.

Douglas Fir – The texture of douglas fir doors is smooth with a straight, even grain. This wood is a light, rosy color that is set off by its remarkably straight and handsome grain pattern. Will tend to “redden” over time when exposed to light. This wooden door paints easily and can hold all types of stains and finishes. A popular choice for front doors, as it naturally resists weathering.

Knotty Alder – A popular species today because of its pronounced grain and uniform texture. This versatile wood species features a fairly straight grain with areas of burl clusters and small knots. These marks add character and will provide a darker texture and color when finished. Alder varies from pale yellow to reddish brown and it accepts stains exceptionally well. It is also the lightest and least dense. Knotty Alder presents a more rustic look for wood doors. When stained, alder blends well with walnut, mahogany and cherry.

Mahogany – Mahogany doors are made from one of the most recognizable species. Its color ranges from reddish brown to a deep, rich red and it stains well for a superior finish. The wood displays a prominent growth ring figure, with grain that is straight or interlocked. This wood offers less expansion and contraction than most other hardwoods.
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Q: What exactly is a "prehung" door?

A: A prehung door is simply a door that has been hinged and attached to a new jamb or frame prior to being installed into the opening. It is usually prepared for the lock set and may also include other items such as a sill, weather stripping, exterior trim and door stops.
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Q: I am replacing my existing doors. Is it better to use "prehung" doors or just install new door slabs?

A: Whether or not to use prehung doors depends upon a few things:
• First, are you replacing the door casings as well
• What shape are the existing jambs in; are they scratched or dented
• Do all your doors currently fit well and operate properly
If any of the above conditions exist, using prehung doors would probably be a better choice.
If, however,
• You are only changing the doors and not your door casings
• Your jambs are in good shape
• Your doors are all fitting properly
...then using a door slab only is usually a practical solution.
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Q: How are doors measured?

A: Doors are measured in inches as follows: a standard 36" wide x 80" height x 1-3/4" thick door
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Q: How do I determine if a door is a right-hand or a left-hand swing?

A: Standing on the outside of the opening that the door swings into, look at the hinges. If they are on the right, then it's a right-hand door. If they are on the left, it’s a left hand door.
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Q: What is the rough opening size needed for a prehung door?

A: For single doors add 2" to the door width and 2-1/2" to the door height. For instance, a standard 36” x 80” door would require a 38" x 82-1/2" rough opening. Pairs of doors require twice the door width plus 2" as well as an additional 1/2".
A standard pair of 36” x 80” doors with an astragal would require a 74-1/2" x 82-1/2" rough opening. An astragal is molding composed of a half round surface surrounded by two flat plains (fillets). An astragal is commonly used to seal between a pair of doors.
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Q: How do I determine the "jamb width" for a prehung door?

A: Determining the jamb width for a prehung door can be tricky. For most interior applications it is simply a matter of measuring the overall wall thickness. For instance, a standard wall constructed with 2 x 4 studs and 1/2" sheetrock on both sides would have a wall thickness of 4-9/16", that is 3-9/16" (the net width of the 2 x 4 stud) plus 1" (1/2" sheetrock times 2 sides). To determine the wall thickness of an existing interior door you will need to measure the overall jamb width, excluding the casings.

For exterior doors, determining the jamb or frame width is dependent upon what type of siding and exterior trim is being used. In situations where the exterior trim is being applied over the exterior siding, then it is simply a matter of measuring the entire wall thickness. In other situations where the siding material (such as stucco) is butting up to the exterior trim, then the thickness of the exterior material would not be included in the jamb width
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Q: What information will I need to order a prehung door?

A: Here is a checklist of the information we need to be able to place your order:
• Rough opening or nominal door size
• Jamb width or finished wall thickness
• Door style, species and finish
• Hinge style and color
• Selected lockset (for proper door machining)
• Handing or swing of door
• Additionally for exterior doors
• Exterior trim and siding used on home and/or threshold needed
• Distance flooring projects into the door opening
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Q: What is the best type of material for paint grade doors, jambs and moldings?

A: There are an ever increasing number of paint grade materials available in the millwork industry today. Composite material, MDF is becoming the standard for paint grade doors and moldings because of its superior paint ability and low cost. Finger-joint pine is another attractive option because of its ease of installation, fairly low cost and wide selection of available material. Douglas Fir and Poplar are other modestly priced woods that are excellent for use as paint grade material, especially on high-end custom work.

Vertical grain Douglas fir doors continue to be popular in paint grade applications because of their wide selection and reasonable cost. Fiberglass and steel doors offer the consumer a modestly priced alternative, especially in a high-exposure situation.
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Q: Can you provide custom designed doors, mouldings or other millwork?

A: Yes! Our friendly, knowledgeable expert industry professionals discuss your individual entry door needs and guides you in your decision making.
Our friendly expert consultants are only a call or a chat away to discuss your interior and exterior door needs. If you are located in Southern California, please visit one of our showrooms to view examples of some of the many products we offer, and meet our industry professionals in person.
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Q: I cant find the door I want on your site, Do you have others?

YES! The styles you see on the website are mainly "IN STOCK" doors. We have thousands of doors available. Just give us a call or send us an email we will happily help you find the right products!
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