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The ultimate guide to buying new doors in 2024

If you’re searching for the perfect doors for your property, you’ve come to the right place. Whether you're deciding between stylish internal doors or robust external ones, we understand that the choice can be overwhelming. That’s why we’ve put together a comprehensive buyers’ guide to help you navigate your options.


What makes a high-quality door? How do different doors stack up against each other? We’ll delve deep into these questions, providing you with all the essential information you need. Our goal is to arm you with knowledge so that you can confidently compare and choose doors that not only look great but also offer the durability and security you need. Are you ready to make an informed decision and find doors that will enhance your home’s aesthetics and functionality? Read on for all you need to know and use our door comparison tool to start your search.


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Why use SpotDif to compare door quotes & suppliers?

Finding new doors shouldn't be a hassle. We believe connecting with reliable manufacturers should be straightforward, which is why SpotDif simplifies the process. We compare door suppliers, both national and independent, to minimise your search and comparison time, allowing you more time to enjoy your new doors. With a wide range of excellent providers to explore, you're sure to discover the perfect style for your home.

How to tell if it’s time for a new door

Are you wondering whether it’s time to replace your doors? Sometimes, the signs can be quite obvious, but other times they're more subtle. Here are 10 tell-tale indicators that it might be time for a door upgrade:


  • Drafts and breezes: Feeling a draft even when your door is closed is a clear sign that it isn’t insulating the room properly. Not only can this make your home less comfortable, but it could also be costing you more in heating bills.


  • Difficulty opening or closing: Doors that stick or are hard to open and close could indicate frame damage or warping, common in both internal and external doors.


  • Visible damage: Cracks, splits, or chips not only spoil the look of your door but can affect its structural integrity, too. This damage can worsen over time, so it’s best not to ignore it.


  • Outdated style: Updating your door can rejuvenate your space, enhancing both your home’s style and value.


  • Noise: If you notice increased noise levels, your door may not be providing enough sound insulation. Upgrading to a solid or better-insulated door can help keep noise out.


  • Security concerns: Older doors or those with weak locks can make your home a target for intruders. If you’re worried about security, we recommend looking for a new door with modern and advanced locking mechanisms.


  • Rot or mildew: Wooden doors can be prone to rot and mildew, which can undermine the door's strength. If you spot any rot or mildew, it’s definitely time to replace them.


  • Damaged weather stripping: Worn or peeling weather stripping can lead to drafts and leaks. We always think it’s best to try and repair or replace the weather stripping first, but if this isn’t possible, you might need a whole new door. 


  • Increased energy bills: Notice your heating costs creeping up? It might be due to inefficient doors. Look for energy-efficient replacements to cut down on these expenses


  • Water leakage: If water seeps in around your door during rain, it can damage both the door and your home’s interior. A well-sealed, properly fitted door can resolve this issue.

Which door material is best for you?

Once you know it’s time for a new door, your first step is to think about the best material for your needs. Let’s explore your main options and see how they compare in terms of durability, energy efficiency, aesthetics, and cost. 


uPVC (Unplasticised Polyvinyl Chloride)


uPVC doors are synthetic and crafted from durable plastic, making them a versatile and affordable choice for many homeowners.

  • Durability: uPVC doors are strong and weather-resistant, ideal for the UK’s weather conditions.


  • Maintenance: A great perk of uPVC is that it requires minimal upkeep, saving you both time and effort.


  • Energy efficiency: This door material offers good insulation properties, helping to reduce your home’s heating costs.


  • Aesthetics: You can find uPVC doors in a range of styles and finishes, from wood-effect designs to bold colours.


  • Cost: uPVC is generally more affordable than other materials, making it an excellent choice for many households. 


Best suited to

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uPVC doors are a versatile option. However, we think this material works especially well for modern residential properties — particularly flats and newer homes where cost and maintenance are significant considerations.

Wood

Nothing beats the natural beauty of wooden doors, which add a warm and inviting touch to any interior.

  • Durability: Timber doors are solid and robust, offering good security.


  • Maintenance: Wooden doors do, however, require regular treatment, such as oiling and staining, to prevent weather damage. 


  • Energy efficiency: This material is a natural insulator, though gaps can form if the wood isn’t well-maintained.


  • Aesthetics: Wood offers a timeless appeal, with natural grain variations. You can also varnish and paint your door to suit your home’s aesthetic. 


  • Cost: These doors tend to be more expensive than uPVC options, though the price tag will vary depending on the type of wood. For example, softwoods like alder tend to be a lot more affordable than hardwoods like oak and walnut. 

Best suited to

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Traditional homes, cottages, and premium properties, in particular, can benefit from the classic aesthetic and authenticity of real wood doors.

Composite

Composite doors are made of a combination of materials, including wood, PVC, and insulation foam. These doors are highly sought-after and make a fantastic first impression. 

  • Durability: Because they combine the strength of wooden doors with the resilience of synthetic materials, composite doors are resilient and durable.


  • Maintenance: Composite doors tend to be low-maintenance, requiring less upkeep than wooden doors.


  • Energy efficiency: These doors offer excellent insulation capabilities.


  • Aesthetics: Composite doors are available in a range of versatile designs. In fact, they can even mimic the look of real wood.


  • Cost: A composite door will usually be more expensive than uPVC and wooden models, but it offers better longevity and performance.

Best suited to

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Composite doors are a great choice for a variety of homes, from contemporary to classic. We think they are especially beneficial for those looking for a high-performance door with minimal upkeep.

Aluminium

Aluminium doors provide a sleek, contemporary look with their lightweight yet sturdy build.

  • Durability: Doors made from aluminium are extremely durable, and are resistant to rust and corrosion.


  • Maintenance: Simple cleaning is usually enough for an aluminium door, making them a low-maintenance option.


  • Energy efficiency: Aluminium doors provide good insulation, often enhanced by special features like thermal breaks.


  • Aesthetics: They offer a modern design with a slim profile.


  • Cost: Aluminium doors are usually more expensive than uPVC. However, they can be a worthwhile investment in long-term value.

Best suited to

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Aluminium doors are an excellent choice for contemporary homes and commercial settings where style and durability are paramount.

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Find the best doors suppliers in the UK

Finding the best door suppliers in the UK can be challenging. And it takes time and effort to trawl through review sites and compare door prices from different manufacturers. We’ll match you with the best door suppliers in the UK to save you time and money. Just answer a few simple questions, and we’ll find you quotes from major providers that match your requirements. It couldn’t be easier, and you’ll have your quotes in seconds.

Comparing front door designs

Your front door is the first thing visitors see. It’s also a key part of your kerb appeal and can add value to your property when you decide to sell — so it must give a great impression. But what are the aspects to look at when comparing different door designs? 


Panel styles


Doors come with a variety of panel configurations ranging from a single large panel to multiple smaller panels. The choice of panels can influence not just the aesthetics but also the strength and privacy of the door. 


Glazing options


Incorporating glass into your door can brighten your entryway and make a strong visual impact. From small peepholes to full-length glass panels, glazing options vary widely. Consider frosted or textured glass to maintain privacy while still letting in light. What kind of statement are you looking to make?


Colour choices


The colour of your door can transform the facade of your home. Whether you opt for a bold, eye-catching hue that stands out or a more subdued tone that blends with the exterior, the possibilities are endless. Have you thought about the mood you want to set?


Accessories


Finally, the door accessories you choose such as handles, knockers, and letterboxes can complement your door’s design. These not only add functionality but also enhance the door's overall appeal. Are you aiming for a modern touch with sleek, stainless steel fixtures, or perhaps a more classic look with brass accents?

Internal doors: what are your options?

When it comes to choosing internal doors, you have a wealth of options that can enhance both the functionality and style of your home.


  • Single internal doors: These are the standard choice for most rooms, offering simplicity and efficiency in design. Perfect for smaller spaces, single doors can fit seamlessly into any interior style. 


  • Double internal doors: Ideal for larger openings, double doors can create a sense of grandeur and openness between rooms. They work well in dining areas or as sophisticated entrances to living rooms. 


  • Pocket doors: If you’re tight on space, pocket doors are a clever solution. They slide into the wall, meaning no swing space is needed. 


  • Sliding doors: Similar to pocket doors but more visible, sliding doors run on a track and are great for saving space while adding modern flair to a room.


  • Fire doors: Safety doesn’t have to compromise style. Fire doors are crucial for slowing the spread of fire and smoke, and they come in various finishes to match your home's decor.


  • Room dividers: For flexibility in larger spaces, room dividers such as sliding panels or folding doors can be practical and decorative. They allow you to adapt the layout according to your needs.


  • French and bi-fold doors: Both add charm and character while providing the option to open up spaces or close them off for privacy. French doors are hinged and swing open, whereas bi-fold doors fold in on themselves, offering a neat, compact solution.
internal door to living room

Double-glazed vs. triple-glazed doors

Are you looking to bring more natural light into your home without sacrificing energy efficiency? Double and triple glazing could be a great option. Here’s why….


Double-glazed doors


These doors have two layers of glass, sealed tightly with a gap filled with insulating gas. This setup helps keep your home warm in winter and cool in summer, which could help cut your energy bills. 


Plus, they offer more security, less noise from outside, and reduced condensation and UV damage inside your home. Double-glazed doors are a strong contender when you want a good balance between performance and price.


Triple-glazed doors


Adding another layer, triple-glazed doors include three panes of glass. They’re especially good in very cold climates as the extra glass pane ups the energy efficiency and security even more, offering superior insulation. 


Thinking about upgrading from single or double glazing? If you live in a colder area, we recommend the additional layer to keep your home comfortable all year round.

The environmental benefits

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As well as reducing noise and lowering your energy bills, additional glazing is a brilliant choice for anyone hoping to create a more eco-friendly home. To really boost your property’s green credentials, we recommend looking at your energy and heating strategy, too. 


Combining new doors with a heat pump or solar panels and improved loft insulation can do wonders for your energy consumption and carbon footprint.

Choosing your new doors: A step-by-step guide

So, how do you get the ball rolling with choosing your new doors?


1. Assess your needs


In our experience, it’s always good to take a step back before you start comparing doors. Think about what you need from a new door. Is it more natural light, better insulation, or enhanced security? Maybe you want a door that stands out stylistically or blends seamlessly with your home’s existing decor.


Consider how the door will be used daily. This initial step helps focus your search on doors that meet your specific requirements.


2. Know your measurements


Whether you’re looking for single or double doors, we recommend always double-checking the dimensions you’ll need. Standard internal doors in the UK measure 1981 x 762 x 35mm. The average height for an external front door is also 1981mm.


However, you’ll find that many modern houses are fitted with doors sized 1981 x 838 x 35mm to comply with Part M requirements for wheelchair access


3. Tips for measuring for new doors


When measuring up for new doors, you'll need to know the height, width and thickness. Once you take your measurements, always round up to the nearest standard door size. Remember, you can always trim your doors to fit but you can't make them larger.


For a frame with a door, measure the width at the top and bottom and the height at the right and left of the existing door.


4. Choose the material and style


Taking note of our comparisons above, it’s time to decide on the material and style of your new door. Will you go for a sleek aluminium front door or traditional French patio doors with a wooden frame?


5. Set a budget


As we’ll discuss in more depth in a moment, doors can vary widely in price based on material, design, and special features. Planning your budget in advance will help you make choices that offer the best value for your money without compromising on essential features.


6. Compare prices from different suppliers


Don't forget to shop around and compare prices from different door suppliers. Look for the best deals without compromising on quality. Check online reviews and ask for recommendations to ensure you're buying from reputable sources. It's also worth considering any after-sales services, warranties, and delivery options as part of the overall value when making your final decision. This is where SpotDif can be particularly helpful. Use our door comparison tool to easily compare quotes and services from a variety of trusted door suppliers — all in one place.

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Compare Door Quotes with SpotDif

It only takes a minute to compare door quotes with SpotDif. Just click the Start My Search button, then answer some quick and easy questions to get started. We’ll only ask you a few short questions about the doors your looking for and with handy tips during the process, we’ll ensure you only compare door prices on the styles and finishes you need.

DIY or professional door installation?

Another important aspect to consider is whether you install your doors yourself or hire a professional to fit them for you.


If you're handy and have the right tools, DIY installation can save you money. However, consider the complexity of the door mechanism and the importance of a perfect fit to ensure security and energy efficiency.


For most people, we recommend professional installation to guarantee the door is set up correctly. This is particularly helpful for advanced door types (such as bifold or pocket door systems) or more complex layouts.


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How much do new doors cost?

When you’re planning to upgrade your doors, it’s vital to understand the costs involved. How much should you budget? Well, it depends on the material and style you choose.


uPVC Doors are usually the most cost-effective option, typically ranging from £340 to £925 for a standard door without installation. They're a great choice if you want durability and low maintenance without breaking the bank. 


Aluminium doors tend to start at around £450, with prices ranging up to approximately £1,250.


Wooden doors can be more expensive, usually between £580 and £2,030, depending on the type of wood and design. Remember, though, they might need more upkeep, which could add to the cost over time.


Composite doors are higher in price still. However, they are excellent for insulation and security. These might set you back anywhere from £640 to £1,500. Given their benefits, they're often worth the investment, especially in areas with harsh weather.


Installation costs


Door installation costs can vary too but generally range from £500 to £2000, depending on the complexity of the job. 


These costs cover:

  • Labour costs

  • Removing your old door

  • Replacing door frames and side panels

  • Adding any furnishings (such as hinges, letterboxes, door knockers, and lights)

The SpotDif Opinion

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We recommend factoring in additional costs early on so you can cover any extra work needed on frames or thresholds.


We also suggest getting a few quotes to compare. SpotDif can help you with this, ensuring you find the best price and service for your new doors.

Door Prices

Door Type

uPVC

Aluminum

Wooden

Composite

Price

£340 - £925

£450 - £1,250

£580 - £2,030

£640 - £1,500

Top tips for looking after your new doors

Once you’ve installed your new doors, proper care will ensure they look great and function well for years to come. By following our tips, you can maintain the beauty and functionality of your doors, ensuring they stand the test of time. 


1. Choosing the right paint for your doors: For wooden doors, opt for either a high-quality latex paint or an oil-based paint. Latex paints are easier to work with and clean up, while oil-based paints offer a durable finish that's great for high-traffic areas. Always apply a primer first to enhance the paint’s adherence and longevity.


2. Cleaning wooden doors: To keep wooden doors looking their best, regularly dust them with a soft, dry cloth. For deeper cleans, use a mixture of warm water and mild dish soap. Apply gently with a soft sponge, then dry thoroughly to prevent water damage.


3. uPVC and composite door maintenance: uPVC doors are low maintenance — wiping down with soapy water is usually enough to keep them looking new. Avoid abrasive cleaners which can scratch the surface. Composite doors can also be cleaned with soapy water, though you should use a non-abrasive cloth to protect the finish.


4. Check the hardware: Regularly check and tighten the hinges and handles on your doors. Loose hardware can cause misalignment and damage over time.


5. Seal and weatherstrip: Ensuring that the sealant and weatherstripping are intact is especially important for exterior doors. These materials keep out moisture and drafts, improving energy efficiency and preventing water damage.

Find your perfect doors with SpotDif

Looking for the perfect doors for your home can feel like a challenge, but it doesn't have to be. At SpotDif, we're here to help you navigate through the myriad of options to find doors that not only meet your needs but also fit your budget. Wondering how to get the best value without compromising on quality? We've got you covered.

Our platform allows you to easily compare prices and features from a range of suppliers, ensuring you make an informed decision. Whether you need a robust fire door, a stylish bi-fold, or a simple internal door, we help streamline your search. With SpotDif, finding the right door at a great price is straightforward and hassle-free. 

Start your search today by filling out our door comparison form.


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Compare energy-efficient doors with SpotDif

Ready to invest in energy-efficient doors for your home? Obtaining a quote from SpotDif is quick and dependable. Since we only compare door quotes from trusted local suppliers, you can be confident in any deal you choose. Looking to explore your options for new doors? Get competitive quotes from SpotDif in just seconds.
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Anna Dearden
Home Sector Specialist
Combining in-depth research with an interest in all things home improvement, I aim to keep SpotDif readers up to date with interior design trends, renewable energy options, and more.
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