Internal door guide

October 5, 2019

If you’re moving into a new home or considering a renovation, then you might need to buy some new internal doors. The sheer choice available can be overwhelming, so in this guide, we’ll detail how you can find the right door for the right price.

Internal door materials

There are several different door options on offer in the UK market. While all doors function the same, they can vary in style and finish. You can also buy internal doors in a range of different materials. Finding the right material is often the biggest consideration when choosing a door, so it’s important to know what’s the best choice for you. The most commonly used materials on internal doors are as followed:

Hardwood

The premium choice, hardwoods like timber are known for their style and performance. The material has high-quality levels of performance but is the most expensive option.

Softwood

Normally woods like pine, cedar and fir. Not as expensive as hardwood options but have similar levels of workability.

MDF

An engineered wood product, which is affordable, durable and resistant to warping. As the material has no wood grain texture, it’s easy to paint.

Solid-core

Offer similar performance levels as solid wood, but at a fraction of the price. Made from plywood, or a moulded composite but filled with wood fibre to mimic the feeling of solid wood.

Hollow-core

The most budget-friendly wood option. Manufactured from less expensive woods with hollow cores. Hollow-core doors don’t provide much acoustic protection and aren’t very durable.

Metal

Highly functional and sturdy. Metal doors are a cheaper option that has grown in popularity in recent years.

UPVC

Made from fully-recyclable materials and often used to replace wooden doors.

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For most homeowners, the difference is purely aesthetic, as the material you choose will affect what finishes are available.

Internal door finishes

Depending on the material of the unit, doors can be finished in one of two styles; painted and stained. Staining a door requires a high-quality material, so look to only use on wood. If you feel like this is out of your price range, there are other options available. Nowadays, engineered wood core products with real wood veneers are of high enough quality to be stained. Staining a door is simple, but it’s essential to use an established brand of varnish and a good brush.

Unlike staining, doors of all materials can be painted, which makes it the more cost-effective approach. There are two types of painted door; MDF and moulded. In general, moulded doors are cheaper and often made from wood by-products that have been pressed together. Moulded doors are often hollow, so they’re not suited to areas where you’d require soundproofing. Most of the time, moulded doors are avoided on bedrooms and bathrooms.

Internal door styles

As well as choosing the material and finish, you’ll have to choose between various styles of door. The main three varieties are:

Swinging doors

The classic approach, a swinging door operates on a double hinge and will often swing both ways.

Sliding doors

internal sliding doors

Sliding doors are superb for tight spaces, as they don’t need any extra room to open the door. Many people think sliding doors look elegant; however, they can be challenging to install.

Folding doors

Sometimes known as bi-fold doors, folding doors are very functional but typically used to divide the inside and the outside environment. They are very stylish and fashionable in high-end properties and restaurants.

sliding internal doors

Panel doors

A door made up of panels. Some panels are flat, but they can also be raised to create a bevelled edge on the centre of the door.

internal door

Flush doors

Known for their smooth back and front. These doors are very contemporary and are finished in several styles.

Glazed doors

Doors with glazing panels that let light through. Can be used to bring natural light into a room, so great for dark rooms and hallways.

How much does an internal door cost?

Internal doors usually cost between £25 – £150, but bespoke doors will cost far more. As mentioned, the price typically depends on the material and style you’ve chosen. Hardwood doors tend to be the most expensive. If you’re buying multiple doors, look for a supplier that offers a package deal. Some suppliers now sell doors in bundles, and they’re often available at a cheaper rate than the standalone unit.

How much does it cost to fit an internal door?

There is no standard cost to fit an internal door, but the job should cost between £40 – £70. With many doors coming in sets, most installers will offer deals that lower the installation cost per unit. Additionally, the style of the door makes a big difference; for example, a sliding door costs far more to fit than a swinging door as the installation is more complicated.

It’s essential to shop around when you’re looking to have an internal door fitted. Using a trusted tradesperson site like Checkatrade is always advisable. Over 4.6 million homeowners have successfully used the service, hiring a checked tradesperson they could rely on and then going on to leave their reviews on the site. Getting a few prices puts you in a position of power, not only do you have a better idea of the specific rate in your area, but you’ll have more room to negotiate when it comes to price.

Do internal doors need to be fire doors

Fire doors are designed to provide better protection against fire than standard doors. Most domestic fire doors offer 30 minutes of protection against fire and smoke, but there are versions that give even more extended protection. Not all internal doors need to be fire doors, but you usually need at least one installed in a property. Building regulations require fire doors in the following areas of a property:

• A two-storey house that has a door leading from an integral garage into a house

• New build, or renovated domestic properties, which have three or more storeys must have fire doors to every habitable room off the stairwell.

Fitting an internal fire door isn’t the same as installing a typical door. The process is more complex and will often require someone with specific training to complete. Fire doors must be fitted following the latest Building Regulations. Failure to comply puts the building and the occupants inside of it at serious risk. If installed incorrectly, fire doors will not perform as expected, giving those inside less time to escape.

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