A storm door will provide extra protection against the weather, as well as provide more security against burglars and intruders. They are installed within the same frame as the exterior door, and can be purchased in metal or wooden frames. Storm doors can range from finely decorative brass doors to plain aluminum frames with reinforced glass. They can be installed by the average do-it-yourself homeowner in less than six hours.
Tools and Material
There are a number of tools necessary for installing a storm door. You will need a drill or screw gun with a Phillips bit, a hack saw or reciprocating saw with a metal cutting blade, clear silicone caulk and saw horses. You can choose your door color and material, but remember to measure your existing exterior door opening and make sure that it isn't oversized. If the door opening is larger than the standard 36-inch opening, then you will need to purchase extension hardware. The extension hardware will consist of a number of metal spacers that will reduce the opening to standard size. Your local hardware store clerk can help you decide.
Prepare the Opening
The storm door will attach to the brick molding on the outside of the exterior door opening. You will need to make sure that this opening is secure and in good shape. Replace rotten or damaged trim, and remove flaking paint and repaint before you install the storm door. Add nails to any areas that are loose; loose molding will not serve as good support for the new storm door. Caulk framing and trim before continuing on. Add a strip of z flashing above the door opening, just over the brick molding -- the z flashing will prevent water from draining into the opening of the new storm door.
The storm door has a frame that must be installed to the brick molding of the exterior door. Measure the door opening from top to bottom and cut the hinge frame to fit the opening. Have a helper hold the door while you attach the frame to the brick molding. Make sure that the door is plumb, and check to make sure that it will close properly. Attach the header frame (above) and left latch frame to the brick mold. Add clear caulking to the door frames where they attach to the wood molding. Add locking hardware to the new door and check, once again, that the door will close and function properly with the new hardware installed.