• Do I Need A Storm Door?

    Before purchasing storm doors Pittsburgh for your home on a whim, it is important to know what a storm door is, and how the right option can benefit your home. The right storm door can add comfort to your living space, and protection to your entry door. You need to understand the basics of storm doors, so that you can make an informed decision about whether or not storm doors are the right decision for your home.

    What is a storm door?

    A storm door is an additional exterior door that is commonly installed for protection from inclement weather and for added ventilation in warmer weather. Most storm doors are equipped with interchangeable or retractable glass and screen panels. Some styles allow for the glass panel to be removed and replaced with a screen for warmer weather, and then switched back for winter months. Other styles are equipped with screens that roll up or down depending on whether the homeowner wants ventilation, or protection from cold weather.

    What is the purpose of a storm door?

    Storm doors allow for extra flexibility and protection for exterior doors. Storm doors allow for additional light and increased ventilation into your home, while still creating a barrier from bugs entering your living space. Unlike a solid entry door, a storm door also allows for the option to watch children who are playing outside, or simply to let additional sunlight in. Storm doors work as a way to protect your entry door from the elements, i.e., rain, ice, or snow. When properly installed, a storm door can add an additional layer of insulation, creating a pocket that keeps warm air in and cold air out.

    Do I need a storm door?

    When you are deciding if a storm door is the way to go for your home, there are a few things to consider. Consider the climate in which you live. If your exterior door is exposed to the elements, then a storm door may be the way to go to protect your door. If you have a new, well insulated, energy-efficient exterior door, you may not need or want a storm door. If you live in a warmer climate, a storm door may not be the best option.

    According to the Department of Energy, those whose exterior doors receive more than a couple of hours of direct sunlight each day should avoid a storm door. The glass in the storm doors will trap in the heat, which could potentially cause damage to the entry door. Other doors that are on a porch, or under an overhang that protects the door from the elements, do not necessarily need a storm door.

    Pros and Cons of Storm Doors

    Before jumping into purchasing a storm door, be sure to do your research to find out if a storm door is going to be the best investment for you and your home. While there are many advantages to having a storm door, they are not for everyone. Some of the pros and cons of storm doors include:


    • Ventilation in good weather
    • Adds visibility and light
    • Keeps bugs out
    • Protects entry door from the elements


    • Traps in heat, which could damage entry door
    • Not necessary for doors that are already covered and protected
    • Inconvenient when carrying small children or groceries

    After doing your own research into determining if storm doors Pittsburgh are the right addition to your home, Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors can help you find the right look and style to compliment your home. With the added benefits that a storm door brings, if it is the right addition to your home, don’t wait any longer! Contact us today to get your new storm door!

  • What to Look For When Buying A New Garage Door

    When it is time to purchase a new garage door, do you know what to look for to ensure that you are getting the right garage door for your home? When it comes to garage doors Pittsburgh , there isn’t a ‘one size fits all’, so it is important to think about what you need before you have a new one installed. A garage door is an essential part of your home. Therefore, it is imperative that you find one that not only looks good with your home, but also provides the security that you are looking for in a garage door. We’ve compiled a list of things to consider before you purchase the first garage door you find.


    For homeowners, security is the most important feature to consider. Finding a garage door that is equipped with the latest security features to protect your home could be the best decision you make for home security. Some garage doors are now equipped with a rolling-code technology security feature. This feature changes the security code for the garage door each time the remote is used.


    For those homes that have high traffic, small children, or pets, a garage door that is equipped with a laser light sensor is essential. When a laser light sensor detects an object or person in the path of the door while closing, the door will either stop or reverse direction.


    Garage doors are made out of either wood, steel, aluminum, vinyl, or fiberglass. Depending on the look and style you are going for, this will be a determining factor for the material that will give you the look you want.

    • Wood: Homeowners who want a visual statement piece usually opt for wood garage doors. However, wood is not as durable as other materials.
    • Steel: Steel is the most common, least expensive material for garage doors. Not only is steel more durable, but it also provides an increased level of security.
    • Fiberglass: Fiberglass is durable, but when exposed to extreme cold temperatures, fiberglass doors are prone to cracks.
    • Aluminum: Aluminum is the material of choice in areas that are prone to moisture-causing issues. Aluminum doors resist corrosion and rust caused by excessive amounts of moisture.
    • Vinyl: Vinyl is a relatively new garage door material making its debut. Vinyl offers homeowners an affordable, durable, and low-maintenance option when selecting a garage door.


    For some homeowners, the ability to select a style of garage door is news to them! Garage doors are available in tilt-up, sectionals, and roll -up styles. Each style comes with its own set of advantages and disadvantages. For roll-up doors, they are more expensive than other styles of doors available and typically require more maintenance to ensure proper functionality. On the other hand, roll-up doors consist of several small parts that connect to one large unit that roll overhead when opened. Sectional garage doors are similar to roll-up doors. They consist of three or four panels that are connected with hinges. Sectional doors take up more ceiling space than other styles of doors, and require regular maintenance to prevent mechanical difficulties. Tilt-up garage doors are made of a single panel that opens and closes with a ceiling-mounted track.


    When shopping for garage doors, pay attention to the horsepower’s listed on the various motors available. Heavier garage doors will require more horsepower to operate, whereas having a motor with higher horsepower on a lightweight door could be unnecessary. Find the motor with the right amount of horsepower for your particular needs.


    A garage door is a big investment for any homeowner, one that they will have to live with for years to come. When looking at the various styles and types available, it is important to decide if you want a door that will blend in with the rest of your home, or that will make a statement. What about the ambiance of the neighborhood? Would you prefer a door that has windows, or a solid door panel? Take the time to consider all of your options to ensure that you are getting a door that you will be happy with.


    Depending on the type, style, and features that your door is equipped with, this will determine the final cost. When shopping for garage doors, having a budget set that you are comfortable paying will help in determining what features you can and cannot afford to have included in your garage door.

    When you make a decision on a garage door, be sure that it is a decision that you will be happy with using for years to come. When considering all of the options listed above, you’ll be more prepared to make an informed decision and find the right garage doors Pittsburgh that is durable, beautiful, and functional for your needs. Contact Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors today to get started on finding the right garage door for your home!

  • How To Pick Out An Entry Door

    The front door of your home is an essential element to any home. The front door is what greets all visitors to your home when they first arrive, while also saying a lot about the people who live there. How do you pick out an entry door that is going to fit the style of your home, while adding value and being aesthetically pleasing to look at? After all, the entry door is a key component to your home, and therefore, there is a lot riding on you to make the right decision when purchasing entry doors Pittsburgh .

    Because entry doors provide a level of security to your home, and can add or subtract from your home’s overall curb appeal, replacing front doors is constantly rated as a high-value project for homeowners to invest in. When you invest in replacing the entry door of your home, the value of a new door will nearly exceed the initial investment, meaning that the money invested in a new entry door is going to pay off quickly. But how do you know what door is the right door for your home? There are many different options to choose from, and you need to be sure of what you want with every aspect of your door, including its materials, design, and safety. We’ve complied four tips to help you find the right entry door for your home.

    1. Establish A Budget

    Before you begin to shop for a new entry door, set a pre-determined budget of how much you are comfortable spending, and stick to it. As is typical with most home projects, it is very easy to go over budget by not considering all of the included costs up front, or unexpected delays. Because a new entry door is an investment, it is important to take time to carefully set a budget that reflects careful planning and decision-making on your part. When determining the budget for your new door, here are a few things to consider:

    • Upfront cost vs. long-term benefits
    • Estimated life
    • Maintenance requirements
    • Energy efficiency
    • Weather protection and performance
    • Pre-finishing costs or additional staining or painting required

    Entry doors that stay within budget and add value to your home are the ideal options. Many Energy Star certified doors can lower your heating and cooling cost by protecting your home from drafts and leaks.

    2. Choosing Materials

    The material that your door is made of will play a role in determining the overall effectiveness of its performance. Another aspect to consider is that different materials will also come with different maintenance that will need to be taken care of to ensure that your door lasts for years to come. Materials also affect the cost of the door, so be sure to do your research to know what materials will fit in your budget and which ones won’t. Most doors will be constructed of either wood, steel, or fiberglass, and many offer panel styles and have the option of adding glass. Decorative glass will be an additional cost, and is generally available in a variety of patterns, featuring different textures of glass and bevels.

    • Wood: Wood doors add a classic appearance to any home, with intricate grain patterns and color markings. When it comes to wood doors, there are many different styles, wood types, panel styles, decorative glass, historic accents and embellishments to choose from. While wood doors are beautiful and add a lot of character to any home with their natural, warm appearance, wood doors are generally more expensive than doors made of other materials. This is important to remember, especially with a lower budget.
    • Steel: Steel doors are generally the most affordable door material option available. Premium steel doors are the elite class of steel doors. They are extra durable while resisting dents, and they also don’t warp or crack. Most steel doors are limited to panel design and paint color, all while featuring a smooth surface. Some steel doors can include an insulated core that helps with the energy efficiency of the door.
    • Fiberglass: Fiberglass doors give you the option of either having a door that has a realistic look of stained wood in a variety of grains, or a smooth panel surface for those who prefer a painted door, all without the high price tag of a custom door. Fiberglass doors are high-performing, energy efficient doors that are also durable and require little maintenance. Not only are fiberglass doors energy efficient, but they are also available in a wide variety of panel styles, decorative glass, and finish options. They are also dent-resistant and won’t rust or corrode, making fiberglass doors a popular option for homeowners.

    3. Size

    The standard size for an entry door on a home is 80 inches tall by 36 inches wide, and 2 inches thick. Depending on your home, the entry door required may be taller, wider, thicker, or even need double doors, a side light, and so on. In order to purchase the correct sized door for your entryway, include any side lights, transoms or other decorative elements to help you ensure that your purchase is the correct size.

    4. Style

    When selecting an entry door, select a door that complements the style and design of your home, while adding curb appeal. An entry door is a way to showcase you and your family’s personality. Those who are more traditional may choose to select a classic wood door, while those who have a more artistic personality may opt for a door that has more customizable options available. Because your home is your place to reflect your style and personality, it is important to find an entry door that fits you and your home.

    For those homeowners who live in Pittsburgh, a professional can help you to select the right entry door for your home that fits your style and budget. Entry doors Pittsburgh can help to make your home stand out from the other houses on the block, making your home distinctly yours. Call Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors today to get a free estimate on replacing your existing entry door with one that adds value to your home, while showcasing your personality!