How Much ‘Play’ Should Your Front Door Have?

enrty door could be leaking warm airYou’ve noticed recently that your front door is not closing as firmly as it used to. You might have gotten into a habit of pushing the front door closed to make sure it latched and locked. You would go to sleep at night feeling much more comfortable and safer within your own home.

Over time, though, certain components of an entry door can begin to wear out. Whether it is weatherstripping, the doorframe itself, or something else, it can cause that door to begin to experience ‘play.’

Play is the amount of movement a door will make within the frame when it is closed. Each door will be quite a bit different from the next, and when you’re referring to a front or other entry door, you want to make sure that the ‘play’ is minimized as much is possible.

What play can do.

When there is play in the door, that provides an opportunity for somebody who may want to gain illegal access to your home to slip something in between the door and the frame to either jury rig the lock or prop it open with a crowbar. If a front door that is made of steel or dense wood, like oak, is completely firm and flush within the doorframe, meaning there is no play, it’s virtually impossible for somebody to slip a crowbar, credit card, or other device in the gap.

If you’re noticing your front door has play, you may add some weatherstripping to help secure it, but this isn’t going to improve the security of that door. It may be best to completely replace the door. After all, a front door or side door that is quite a bit older, such as 20 years or more, and is beginning to show signs of fatigue and age could be placing you and the rest your family at increased risk.