Most door manufacturers sell pre-hung doors in kits. The kits include all the hardware you need to install the door, such as hinges, pneumatic closers and latches. Choose a door based on your specific needs and the size and style of your house. Lowe's is happy to provide this information as a service to you.
Some newer models have multi-point locking systems.
Storm doors come with combinations of screen and glass panels. Many have removable panels that can be changed depending on the season. Along the bottom, most doors have a sweep — one or more flexible strips designed to keep moisture, dirt and outside air from entering your home.
If security is a concern, look for a model with protective grilles and deadbolt locks. Certain brands of storm doors have more security features than others.
Before you buy a storm door, check its components in the store. Open and close the door to make sure the hinges and latches operate smoothly. For long life, the components should be of the highest quality you can afford.
Measure the width of the door opening in three places (A,B,C) and the height (D).
Most storm door units can be adjusted slightly to fit into a door frame. The parameters for this adjustment vary by manufacturer, so ask a millwork associate at your local Lowe's for help in determining the best size door for you.
Measure the height and width of your door frame carefully before you visit the store so you will have the information needed to find the correct door size. Measure the space between the exterior brick mould trim pieces, not the inner door jamb.
If your opening is too big for a standard door, you can install a Z-bar extender — a device that fills in the extra space between the door and frame. Some homeowners find the look unappealing and prefer to order custom doors, which can be made to fit any size.
Before installing the door, inspect the wood jamb and trim around your door opening to make sure it is secure and will support the weight of your storm door. Use a level to make sure the door frame is square. If it is not, use shims — pieces of wood or aluminum — to ensure a correct fit. A Z-bar extender can also be used to square an opening.
If your storm door is exposed to direct sun, change over to screens early in the spring and wait until the end of fall before putting the glass panels back on. The panels can act like a greenhouse, heating up the space between the two doors and causing weatherstripping to deteriorate quickly. In extreme cases, the heat could warp metal house doors.
When choosing metal replacement screens, check with your dealer about the compatibility of the metal screens you want to buy with the metal of your door. In some cases, different metals in contact with each other will hasten corrosion.
Most storm doors come with either a door closer or a door stop — both devices control how far your door will open.