Combination storm and screen doors are often made of metal or vinyl and sometimes of wood. In severe climates, a screen door is installed in the summer and swapped out for a glass storm door in the winter; some secondary exterior doors come with removable panels that can be changed with the season.
In cold-winter regions, storm doors minimize energy loss, block drafts, and add a small measure of security. They protect the prime (main) door and, when that door is open, allow more control of climate, ventilation, and light. They can also be helpful at keeping pests out and pets in. They may have two glass panels or an upper glass panel and a lower metal panel with a crossbar dividing the two. Screen doors may also have an upper screen panel and lower metal panel.
Storm and screen doors connect to their frames with hinges and have hydraulic or pneumatic closers that smoothly close the door. They may also have springs and chain stops that keep them from slamming shut or being pushed open with too much force.
But beyond practicality, the new combination screen and storm doors have great curb appeal.
The evolution of storm doors began several years ago, when the familiar aluminum mill finish gave way to white and dark brown. Then other colors—sand, almond, green—crept into the market.
After manufacturers took a major leap forward by offering colors, they began to look at ways of improving the overall look of storm doors, bringing about major changes in construction and decoration.
Visible screws are disappearing, materials are becoming more sophisticated, and a variety of options are entering the market. Now you can choose great-looking, durable doors with solid brass hardware, keyed deadbolt locks, and full-sized glass panels with etched, stained, beveled, or leaded glass, among other offerings.