What do you need to know about exterior wooden doors? Not much actually, as you already know the most important thing – they can be tremendously beautiful, warm and stylish. Somehow, wood is the most-used material for doors, isn’t it?
So, once we decide that we are going to put a wooden door at the main entrance, or in the garage, or at the entrance to a garden, we only need to decide on what type of wood, what design and what sort of maintenance we will need for it. To help you to solve all your doubts about how to make a wooden door look good, keep reading.
The answer is quite simple. Having exterior wooden doors at the main entrance to a home adds an elegant element to the facade. And, it’s not only for the beauty that a well carved wooden door brings to the area, but also for the solidness and durability for which this material is treasured. Remember the great palaces, castles or churches full of art and history that you have visited? Surely in many of these, the access was through a wooden gate, which added beauty by resembling a work of art. Well, we are suggesting a similar idea when we recommend a good wooden door to enter a house.
However, not all doors need to be large ones carved with filigree or heraldic motifs, such as we come across in the old monuments or palaces. The truth is that when we want to make wooden doors for houses, we can choose from many styles. Of course, there are numerous examples of rustic doors carved with floral motifs, but today, we also find many other design styles. From the most minimalist styles governed by absolute simplicity, in which a door is a mere vertical surface, protective and without any adornment, not even an edge, to other equally contemporary models, in which carpenters play with geometric designs as well as colours that move away from the natural tones of wood, like in this example.
You can contact a professional for advice on the best design for your exterior door.
There are several reasons for using a wood door in the exterior of our house. Undoubtedly, the first one is the beauty that results from having this element at the entrance, which in addition to being beautiful, has warmth, which makes the home appear welcoming to visitors. Additionally, depending on the type of façade, wood may seem the obvious choice for the main entrance, for example, for doors or gates that open out or connect to a garden area.
When it comes to exterior doors, the warm reception for visitors should not diminish the privacy of those who reside within the house. In fact, the advantage of exterior wooden doors is that unlike doors made of other materials, since they are solid blocks, nobody can see what you are doing inside your home.
Wooden doors have two disadvantages, but fortunately, both are easily fixable. Firstly, wood is an element that requires maintenance so that it does not lose its attractiveness or effectiveness, since they can get rotten if we do not protect them from dampness, fungi and insects that bore into wood. We will explain later about how to make a wooden door stronger, and you will see that it is a disadvantage that is easy to overcome.
The second negative aspect, is to do with safety, as they are considered flimsier than other metallic materials. However, by reinforcing with a steel or iron door, like armoured doors at the access to vaults, we can make them safer. The same idea can be carried through to exterior wooden doors of a house, and even in the garage door.
See 7 safety door options for your home for ideas on making your door more secure.
For exterior doors, besides traditional oak, the most sought-after woods are those of tropical origin, since they are extraordinarily resistant to the rain as well as to humidity. Due to this, doors made with woods of species like teak are common, although one can make doors with other woods that are locally available. So, in addition to the oak, teak, chestnut, mahogany or cedar wood are also used to make wooden doors for the exterior.
It depends upon the type of wood that we have chosen for our door, as well as the final finish that has been applied by the carpenters. In fact, they are the ones who can advise us more about the frequency of maintenance. However, the work to be done will always be the same, which is basically a giving it a protective coating.
This protection can be done using natural dyes such as linseed oil or wax. Alternatively, it can also be with commercial varnishes. If you opt for the latter, when you don’t want to apply any colour to the wood, it’s ideal to use water-based varnishes that are not only just as effective as the synthetic ones, but also eco-friendlier.
In short, if you are wondering how to make a wooden door for exterior look good and last long, maintenance is as simple as applying a protective product in the frequency recommended by the manufacturer. Of course, before applying dyes or varnish, it is necessary to sand the door to ensure that the product penetrates the wood much better.
We have already mentioned that there are numerous styles for exterior wooden doors. However, all of them originate from something very similar to what we see in this image – a wood-based door in vertical layout and a frame, along with other highlights. This double-leaf door also has a form that is adapted to the arc at the top. If you want an example of a rustic door, it will be something very similar to this, and we would even add a forged metal ring as a knocker, instead of a door bell.
Rustic door designs can vary. Sometimes, more fittings may be added, glass may be included, even stained glass, and of course, the wood can be carved with traditional motifs such as diamonds or flowers. In short, there are endless variations.
When compared with the range of shapes and variants of rustic doors, the number of options of modern wooden doors is multiplied. Besides reinterpretations of local traditions, styles from other countries such as Scandinavian or South American ones, present the most contemporary styles. These modern models are often based on two basic principles – simplicity and functionality. This is evident in the door of the house that we see in this image. The house has an all wooden façade, so of course, the door could not be of another material, and no other design would have been better suited for it than the simplicity of vertical planks. And yet, with a simple variation in the tone of the varnish, the door becomes the highlight in the midst of so much wood.