Choose The Right Fireplace Door
A fireplace door adds a finished look to any room with a fireplace. Depending on your current decor scheme, you may want a classic, simple door or a modern, trendy one. However, remember that fireplace doors are not simply decorative: they bring efficiency and safety to your fireplace. This means that you have to consider more than looks when selecting the right door for your space.
Why is fireplace door selection important?
Fireplace doors and fireplace fronts add a finished look to the fireplace so it’s important to select something that will work well in your space. More importantly, buying the wrong door for your fireplace can have serious safety consequences. Here are some common mistakes:
- Buying masonry doors for prefabricated fireplaces (all the doors here on HeatilatorFireplaceDoors.com are for prefab fireplaces only; find more information on prefab vs. masonry fireplaces here)
- Buying a low quality product with thin glass
- Buying the incorrect size
How to choose the perfect material?
Fireplace doors are generally made of two components: glass panes and metal framing pieces. Let’s look at some common materials fireplace doors are made from and their pros and cons.
Pricing and lifespan of glass and metals
You generally have two glass types to choose from when purchasing fireplace doors: tempered and ceramic glass. Tempered glass is heat-resistant, strong, and will break into small, relatively harmless pieces if it does shatter.
Ceramic glass is extraordinarily heat-resistant (far more so than tempered glass), but if it shatters, it breaks into dangerous shards. It it is also three times the price of tempered glass.
You may think that the better heat-resistance of ceramic glass is worth the price, but this is rarely true. With most fireplaces, fire safety code requires that you leave the doors open while there is a fire in the firebox. Only specialty fireplaces are allowed to burn with the fireplace doors closed, and only those specialty fireplaces need ceramic glass doors.
For the typical fireplace operating with the doors open, tempered glass is a safe, affordable choice. That is why we make all our fireplace doors from tempered glass. It is important to check the thickness of the glass you’re buying. All our fireplace glass panels are 3/16″ thick. Anything thinner than this, and you compromise the strength of the glass.
When it comes to metal, you generally have two choices: steel and aluminum. While you may immediately think opting for steel is the best choice, there is more to consider.
An aluminum door frame 1 1/8″ thick is actually comparable in durability to a steel door 3/4″ thick. In this case, even though the thinner steel frame means less material was used, the door will still be significantly heavier and significantly more expensive than the bulkier aluminum door.
When thinking about purchasing an aluminum door vs. a steel door consider the thickness of the material and the weight, which can make installation more difficult.
Choosing a fireplace door is more than just choosing the best-looking door you can find. You need to consider factors of like durability, ease of maintenance, materials, and safety. That’s why we’ve curated a selection of doors that you can choose from with confidence knowing each door will be a safe, long-lasting choice for your home.