Old forts and haveli had a single entrance for safety reasons, which was large enough to allow various goods to be carried inside, built strong to stop intruders, and looked attractive, as it defined the look of the building. In modern villas and private homes, the entrance door is still the most imposing, remains the biggest door, and must look attractive. Wood remains a preferred material in many Asian countries. A wooden threshold is considered essential in some parts of the country. In most cases, the main door stands safe from weather in the shade of a porch.
Weather Facing Vs. Internal Doors
Weather-facing doors must survive wind, rain, UV, and sunlight. They must stop rain, noise, and dust from entering the house for the comfort of the house owner. A modern house can have multiple entrance doors, including a side entrance, a back entrance, and sometimes a separate entrance for the staircase. Aluminum door designs are commonly used for balcony entrances as weather-facing doors, providing both style and protection while not serving as main entrances.
Internal doors are used inside the house as bedroom, kitchen, or washroom doors. The functional requirement is low, and effort is more to make the doors look attractive.
Benefit & challenges with Wooden Doors
Wooden doors look very attractive and give a traditional look to the house. Many more designs are possible, as wood can be shaped very easily. A great advantage is that the door frame and door panel are made of the same wood and match in look and color. The frame can be made heavy and imposing with a headboard and architrave.
The main challenge with large wooden doors is that they are not made of a single piece of wood. The door panel consists of a frame to fix hinges and lock, a center mullion and transom, and separate door panels. It is always preferred that all parts of the door come from one lot, so that color and grain match is better. However, if different kinds of wood are used, then the joints will open in the wet season due to different moisture absorption. The wood will warp and bend, making locks malfunction. Further, the wood must be stained to achieve color match. The tongue and groove joint for fixing the panel is half the thickness of the door panel. The wooden door is probably not as strong as it looks (unless it is very thick and heavy).
Wooden doors can have a good life under sun and water, if the wood is well seasoned and good paint finish is used. However, the side entrance and back entrance mostly do not have a shade or porch, and it is very difficult to get long life from wooden doors.
Flush Wooden Doors
Flush wooden doors are most popular due to low cost and easy availability. Every plywood manufacturer makes flush doors, as it consists of a pinewood frame, wood baton filling, and a plywood sheet on both sides. It can be further covered with decorative veneer or laminate sheet.
The door frame is made with meranti wood, and color matching is usually difficult. It is suitable for indoor applications but fails as a weather-facing door.
The flush door does not have much strength due to cheap wood filling. Strength is improved with particle board filling, but it does not improve weather resistance. Bending and warping are major problems. During wet weather, the locks may get jammed.
MDF Door Panels
MDF door panels are most used in builder flats. The construction is like flush doors, except the finished surface is contoured like a wood panel door. It is not as strong as a flush door as filling is very difficult in the contoured part of the door. It can be painted but swells if attacked with moisture.
Fiber glass Doors
Fiberglass doors are a great option for entrance doors as they are very strong and do not swell in wet weather, making them ideal for Vietnam’s climate. They can be painted in solid colors and look attractive. However, there are very few manufacturers due to the high cost and difficulty in achieving the correct size (doors are always made as per actual measurements).
Steel doors are rapidly becoming popular for entrance doors (excluding the main door, which is preferred in solid wood). They meet all functional requirements of an entrance door like high strength, ability to withstand UV and high temperature, stop rainwater, and provide good sealing. The steel doors come with a wood film and are very attractive. Multiple locking options are available.
The life of a steel door depends on surface protection, and the risk of rusting always exists. Many steel doors imported from China are available in fixed sizes, which becomes a limitation.
TOSTEM Entrance Door
TOSTEM GIESTA Entrance doors are designed as weather-facing doors. They are constructed with an aluminum sheet and filled with insulation material for heat prevention and noise insulation, like soundproof doors. The frame is sealed with foam for watertight and anti-pinch properties. It offers two locks that control three latches. Users can remove the inside key head to prevent it from unlocking in case of attempted burglary. The look and finish of the door are unmatched. Design options are simple and minimalistic, modern and traditional, and with glass sidelights.
The door construction details are as follows:
- Wood pattern type: (External) Resin laminated sheet/ (Internal) Anti-rust epoxy coating
- Polystyrene (EPS Foam)
Top and Side Frame
- Wood pattern type: Wood pattern resin sheet, wrapping on Aluminum profile with synthetic rubber
- Painted type Anodized Aluminum profile