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The Best Kind of Wooden Doors

Whether you’re building a home or commissioning upgrades, wood doors are almost never a bad choice. They fit in with a variety of design schemes and architectural patterns, are of very high quality, and boast an impressively long lifetime if treated well. Once you’ve decided on wooden doors, however, you’ll realize that it’s really not so simple. There are hollow core wooden doors, solid core wooden doors, solid doors, hollow doors, sandwiched doors . . . And they’re all different. Which you choose depends on a number of factors, including whether or not the door will be internal or external, and just what you want the door to accomplish aside from separating chambers. Today, I’ll share what I know from interior design to help you make that decision effectively.

The Different Kinds of Doors
Doors come in different sizes and types to match different applications. The most common types of doors in houses these days are the hollow core variety. You can identify them by the way they feel, most of the time. They don’t shut out much noise between rooms; are very light; and, while they look like wood, feel more like plywood in terms of weight. This is because they’re usually made with two layers of actual wood sandwiching plywood, which makes for a rather insubstantial door. That said, they separate rooms just fine, and do the job of interior door just fine.

Exterior doors, however, really shouldn't be hollow core, because they don’t do a good job of insulating sound or heat, and don’t act as a sufficient seal between house and outside world. In this case, you’d want to consider what we call a solid core door, which is a door that is wood through-and-through. These offer powerful insulating capabilities, keep out sound much better than hollow core doors, and are significantly heavier, and as such, more durable, than their hollow-core counterparts.

These doors do usually cost a bit more than hollow core ones, since they take more time, money, and resources to construct. They still cost less in the long run, however, because an exterior hollow core door will have to be replaced frequently (hollow core doors don’t stand up to the elements very well). Also, exterior doors just feel better: They shut with vigor, they’re heavy, and just seem more inviting and homely: You’re sure to be pleased with solid core over hollow core doors in exterior applications.