Introduction

a front door with a storm door
Photo: Ryan Benyi
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Q: "I know storm doors cut down on drafts, but are they difficult to install?"
Maryanne Collins, Islip, N.Y.

A: Not at all. Storm doors are sometimes made of wood or fiberglass, but most—including the Andersen 3000 Series storm I'm installing here—are built from low-maintenance aluminum.

Home centers stock standard sizes and can supply custom sizes in a couple of weeks. Look for models that have weatherstripped mounting rails, which allow you to install the door yourself in about an hour.

Before you start, check the width of the jamb and the thickness of the door casing. If the jamb is less than 2½ inches wide or the casing is less than 1 inch thick, pad out the casing with ¾-inch-wide filler strips. They'll support the mounting rail and allow clearance for the handle when the storm door is shut.
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    Tools List

    • drill
      drill/driver
    • 1/8-inch drill bit
      -inch diameter drill bit
    • multi-bit screwdriver
      screwdriver

    Shopping List

    Screen door