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Choosing an energy-efficient front door

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The carpenters at Sheep Dog Hollow, the hundred-year-old house we're renovating, have been busy preparing the frame of the old house for its new windows and doors.

We’ve already chosen our windows, opting for Andersen windows with High Performance Low E glass. Not only are they energy efficient and qualify for a tax credit, but they’re self-cleaning on the outside.

Now it’s time to tackle the front door. The carpenters need the specs to frame a rough opening.

You’d think with an elegant old farmhouse, the obvious choice would be a heavy, antique wooden door found at a restoration yard and lovingly restored. That’s exactly what Martin had in mind. Me, too, until I started researching their energy efficiency.

It turns out, according to the US Department of Energy, exterior doors “can contribute significantly to air leakage in a home — as well as some heat transfer — if it's old, not properly installed, and/or not properly air sealed. This can result in energy losses.”

With a geothermal heating/cooling system, and a big investment in energy-efficient windows, the last thing we want is a leaky front door.

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