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How to choose an aluminium entrance door for your home build

23 Oct 2019 by Altus

Whether for a new build or a renovation, entrance doors are focal points in any home.

Despite this importance, they're often left out of initial conversations regarding interior windows and doors and tacked-on as a last minute consideration.

In this article, we'll look at why aluminium is the ideal material for entrance doors, and highlight the range of choices you can make to find the perfect product. In doing so, we hope to demonstrate why entrance doors deserve priority status for your next project.

The benefits of aluminium entry doors

Aluminium has several advantages over other materials used as entry doors, including:

Increased security and durability 

Despite being lightweight, aluminium is a strong metal. It can be much more difficult for thieves to penetrate than traditional entrance door materials such as timber. Even if you want to add glass inserts, these can be double-glazed or have security glazing to add to their security credentials.

In terms of durability, with an aluminium entrance door you don't have to worry about the following ageing concerns that are common with timber doors:

  • Shrinking
  • Splitting
  • Swelling
  • Leaking
  • Warping

Its long life, prefinish requiring less maintenance and the fact it can be easily recycled, means aluminium is considered one of the most sustainable metals for use in home building.

Improved thermal insulation

Entrance doors are a point of concern for household air leakage, especially if they're old, not insulated or poorly installed. Unwanted air flow can make a home feel hotter in summer or colder in winter, potentially increasing costs of heating and cooling your home.

Among the aluminium doors in Altus Window Systems' Stellar Doors range are thermally enhanced options which hugely reduce heat transfer from the interior to the exterior, or vice versa.

First impressions

Aluminium entrance doors can fit home designs ranging from minimalist and modern to elegant and traditional. Even prior to finishing, this metal is sleek and stylish, a feature that is augmented through powder coating in colours to complement the rest of the home.

On top of this, and unlike timber, aluminium is very easy to clean and maintain, meaning it doesn't readily show signs of ageing.  

1. Single vs. double

While so far we've only talked about practicalities, your entrance doors need to match the visual intent of your build too. An important part of this is choosing between single and double doors:

  • Single - The more common of the two, single aluminium entrance doors provide simplicity and take up less space, a consideration for many entranceways.
  • Double - For those who want a grander entryway to their home, double doors are the way to go. The sheer scale of these features adds an element of grandeur to a home's facade, and windows can be used to draw even greater attention to the entrance area. Double doors are also of practical benefit for homeowners who require disabled access or the delivery or removal of large items.

2. Framed overhead and side windows

Bordering windows can enhance aluminium door design boosting their aesthetic impact, illuminating entranceways, and increasing visibility when approaching the area. There are two principal options:

  • Overlights -  These are located above the door for increased lighting without compromising privacy as well as an alternative to sidelights where space is at a premium.
  • Sidelights - These windows vertically frame the door, creating the perception of increased space. As a design feature they can also imitate the windows or panels of the door.

3. Locks and handles

Your choice of hardware will be principally dictated by matching to the door itself and possibly the doors and handles in the rest of your home. Consider the finishes which could include colour matching, satin chrome or even stainless steel for a timeless, sophisticated appearance. Keyless options, such as digital door locks, which enable entry after a code is keyed, are becoming more common for advanced home security and convenience.

4. Pivot vs. hinged

Aluminium entrance doors are commonly hinged and open inwards. In architecturally designed homes and commercial situations, pivot doors are becoming more popular though they are generally suited to large entrance areas and are generally either glass or aluminium.

Choosing aluminium entry doors: Finishing and colours

Most aluminium doors are powder coated for a long lasting finish though there are also woodgrain options to achieve a more traditional feel. Stellar Doors not only have a wide range of styles but also powder coat colours such as 'Brights' which can add to the unique impact to your entranceway.

Advantages of powder coating include:

  • Evenness - Powder coating provides a smooth finish without the lumps or drops associated with manually painted entrance doors.
  • Durability - Powder coating is long lasting, and capable of withstanding a wide range of environmental conditions, which is crucial for aluminium entrance doors in New Zealand.
  • Quality - Stellar Doors, a well known Altus Windows brand has a 15-year warranty providing the durability benefits that come with aluminium.

Colour is also important if the door is directly exposed to sunlight. Dark colours tend to absorb heat and lighter colours tend to reflect it more. To mitigate heat transfer through your door you could consider a thermally enhanced option. Ultimately the colour you choose may match or complement the cladding, roof or other features of your home.

The sheer range of choice when it comes to aluminium entrance doors means that you're bound to be able to find something that perfectly suits your home. What's more, thanks to their durability, timeless look and range of additional accessories, you can rest assured that this is a solution that will lost long in to the future. For more information on selecting the right aluminium entrance door for your New Zealand home build, get in touch with Altus Window Systems today. 



New Zealand
Altus provides much more than aluminium products to a wide range of industries. We provide innovative, dynamic solutions for our customers, by leveraging our scale, market leading technology and the best people in the industry.


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