Make The Most Of Your Metal Doors With These Simple Repairs

Metal is a great material for your home's exterior doors due to its strength and low maintenance needs. Metal doors are usually made from steel, wrought iron, or aluminum. Steel doors are durable and secure with a high ability to retain the energy in a building. Though they are light and easy to handle, they are strong enough to withstand break-ins, fires, earthquakes, and storms. And, unlike wood, you also don't have to worry about damage from insects, rotting, and deterioration.

However, metal doors can be damaged in other ways, usually over time or as a result of serious impact. They are more susceptible to dents, dings, and general surface damage. Moreover, if not maintained, they tend to rust due to excess heat, cold, or moisture — salty, coastal air is well known to cause corrosion.  Before that happens, some simple repairs can help you maintain your metal doors and keep them looking their best.

Dents and rust

It is important to fix surface damage on a metal door before it starts to corrode beyond repair. Start by sanding the dented area until it feels smooth. This removes any rust or paint from the dent and takes you down to the bare metal. Next, fill in the spot with auto-body filler and make it even with the surrounding area. Wait for the putty to cure according to the filler's instructions and then sand the patch smoothly and evenly. Finish by painting the area so it blends in with the rest of the door.

When it comes to rust, cleaning the door can often be enough to prevent it. Metal doors may be low maintenance but they do need a regular cleaning schedule of once or twice a month — if you live near the coast, then this should be done more often. If rust does begin to appear, it's best to tackle the problem before it gets worse. Use a wire brush or a piece of sandpaper to rub the rust spots, then fill and paint them immediately after.

Other simple repairs

Experiencing squeaky door hinges? These can be quickly fixed by tightening them, applying lubricant, or removing rust in the same method explained above. If you're experiencing extreme weather conditions, you might notice that the door bows due to swelling. This is called thermal bowing and happens when the temperatures on both sides of an external metal door are drastically different. Even though it's temporary, you can fix it by adding shade or protection to the door, or by painting it a lighter color so it stops absorbing as much heat or cold from the air.

Another simple repair you can make is to keep the weather sealant updated. Weatherproofing your door closes any gaps to keep things like moisture, drafts, dust, noise, and insects out of your home. When it comes to maintaining metal doors, making repairs in a timely manner is much cheaper and easier to carry out than a replacement.