Security Screen Doors 101

What Considerations & Features Should I Look for In A Security Screen Door?

A) Materials: Steel Frames versus Aluminum or Metal Alloy Frames?

All can be made strong enough to be security doors, however, because Aluminum & Metal Alloy Frames are
weaker than Steel the frames they must be made wider to gain the necessary strength. The difference is that 2-3″
Steel Frames allow nearly 40% more Airflow & Visibility than Aluminum / Metal Alloy frames which have to be
almost 6″ wide for strength. Use a piece of cardboard to add 3″ boarder around the inside of your door screen
and you will see how much airflow & visibility you lose…. Aluminum doors will not rust but are significantly more
expensive and come in very limited designs. Steel doors properly treated, and powder coated should not show
signs of rust for 8 to 10 years in our area and can then be re-coated.

B) BUGS! How is the door sealed against insects & scorpions?

Make sure you understand how your door will close and seal against BUGS! In the Mid-West and East, the
biggest problem is mosquitoes. Here in the West, we have less of those kinds of nuisances BUT you don’t want
these pesky flies or dangerous Scorpions sneaking in!

Most companies use a foam tape or rubber weather strip to create a good seal around your door. You are not
looking for an airtight seal, just a BUG tight seal.

C) Finish:Paint versus Powder Coating?

Wet Paint is not heat tested or heat resistant and subsequently it doesn’t hold up well under the beautiful, but
HOT, Arizona sun. It just adds another maintenance item to your list of projects.

Powder coating is a type of coating that is applied as a free-flowing, dry powder. The main difference between a
conventional wet paint and a powder coating is that the powder coating does not require a solvent to keep the
binder and filler parts in a liquid suspension form. The coating is typically applied electro statically and is then
cured under heat to allow it to flow and form a “skin”. The powder may be a thermoplastic or a thermo set
polymer. It is used to create a hard finish that is tougher than conventional paint.

Even the screws & screen frames should be powder coated so everything matches in color and lasts a long time.

D) Other Features & Enhancements

1) Mitered corners. This means the corners are solid steel on top and bottom instead of hollow. If the
corners are hollow water can get in and rust doors from the inside out… also makes a rust stain on
your stoop or sidewalk. With the most common tube frame mount be sure that the tube frame ALSO
has mitered corners. Find out if your company charges extra for this, and if so, how much?
2) Closers. Make sure a pneumatic closer is included to pull your door shut.
3) Wind Chains. These prevent wind gusts from blowing your door too far open and should be
Find out if your company charges extra for this, and if so, how much?
4) Sill extensions may be required to insure a bug tight seal on the bottom. Find out if your company
charges extra for this, and if so, how much?
5) Re-Keying to match your front door so you don’t have to use 2 different keys to enter, should be
included in your purchase price. Find out if your company charges extra for this, and if so, how

E) Warranties & Guarantees

Ask about product guarantees or warranties. What happens if there is a break in? What if the sun fades the color?
What if the handle comes loose? How long can I expect it to close & open under normal conditions? Is there
anything that can be done if the house ‘settles’ and the door becomes unaligned? How about labor guarantees?

There are a lot of considerations when you think about it so make sure you get a lot of answers BEFORE you lay
out any down payment or deposit!