What You Need to Know to Select the Right Entry Door

Many people make the mistake of thinking that when they’re ready to replace the entry door to their home, all they have to do is pick out the style they want. In fact, there are several factors you need to be aware of when shopping for a new door.


What purpose do you want your new door to serve? Do you want one that adds architectural interest, one that provides energy efficiency, or are you looking for one that provides better security features? This will help determine what style, material, and features you should select.

Slab or prehung

A slab door is just the door, whereas a prehung door unit includes the door hanging in the frame and includes all of the parts required to install the door.


Despite what many people think, there is no such thing as a standard size door. There are several common door sizes, but even a size that should be standard can vary from one manufacturer to another. Sidelights, transoms, and other decorative elements can add to the size. The best way to make sure you get a door that will fit properly is to take careful measurements, including height, width, and thickness.


This refers to the direction your door swings. To determine the handing, view your door from the outside. If the hinges are the left side and the door is pushing away from you, it is a left hand inswing. If the hinges are on your right side and the door is pushing away from you, it is a right hand inswing.


The overwhelming majority of doors are inswing doors, meaning they are pushed open into the room. Outswing doors are rare, but your door can be designed to swing outward if needed.

Paint or stain

Because many doors do not come finished, you’ll need to decide if you want to paint or stain your new door.  This is also factors in to the type of jamb you will need.


Hardware is also not usually included. This gives you the opportunity to select hardware that complements your design. Think about what style of hardware you want, including style and finish.

McCray Lumber and Millwork has an in-house door shop in our 160,000-foot facility. We also carry a wide variety of entry doors, including custom exterior doors made by Koetter Woodworking and Woodgrain Millwork, along with all of the hardware you’ll need to install your new entry door.