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Exterior Victorian Doors

Exterior Victorian Doors – Composite Victorian Front Doors

The choice of exterior doors is often about creating crucial first impressions of a property while taking care of routine security concerns and normal basic functionalities.

Exterior Victorian doorsExterior Victorian doors were originally built in line with the design elements that were present at the time of Queen Victoria, around 1837-1901 and the very latest Victorian doors use traditional design clues and high-quality modern materials to bring timelessly beautiful doors that are built to last.

Victorian doors were mostly originally designed using pine, a softwood. They were painted to look like hardwood for a general expensive look. The would also be grained and have a stained glass.

This stained glass also allowed in light while preserving privacy. The paint used was most usually green, but later on other colours were used such as dark blue, chocolate brown, deep red or olive green.

Victorian exterior doors were panelled and elaborately curved with matching frames. For urban houses, brass was used more often for door furniture than wrought or cast iron. They could be solid in appearance or, as mentioned above, feature stained or leaded glass panes in the upper half of the door.

Today, you can choose everything from the colour of your exterior Victorian door to the hardware or the material from which it is built. Let’s explore 2 popular types of Victorian front doors – traditional timber & modern composite.

How Much Does a Composite Victorian Front Door Cost?

To be forthright, composite doors are not the cheapest in the market, the quality, lifespan, durability and outstanding appearance are reflected in the price. You can expect to find prices starting in the region of around £800 to £1,000 at least.

Opting for a timber grain or a colour other than white can increase the cost, as can the addition of side panels or features like a low-level threshold.

Here are some more examples of composite Victorian doors prices
Door Specification  Max Door Size   Price Guide
 4 panels with arch glass top – red 1.0 x 2.2 metre From £1,100 fitted
 4 panel solid – black 1.0 x 2.2 metre From £1,050 fitted
 4 panel solid – black + 2 side panels 1.0 x 2.2 metre From £1,800 fitted
2 panel solid & glass – green+ 2 side & 2 top panels 1.0 x 2.2 metre From £2,000 fitted
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Composite Victorian Front Doors

The construction of the modern composite exterior door takes into account all the features needed by the regulators and desired by homeowners and combines them into a truly superb product.

A top quality, timber-grained composite Victorian door is virtually indistinguishable from the “real-thing” and in many aspects outperforms doors made from any other material.

In terms of appearance, we already mentioned that composite Victorian doors can have a wood-grain surface finish, but you also choose from a number of different colours of graining.

Imposing black, a deep red or the dark green (favoured by those who actually lived during Victorian times), give an aesthetic that is hard to beat. But if you are more of a person who likes lighter shades, you can certainly go there also.

victorian composite front doors

Door ColoursSelection of Composite Colour Options

  • Black-Brown / Cream / White
  • Red / Cherry Red
  • Chartwell Green/ Dark Green
  • Grey / Anthracite Grey / Slate grey
  • Dark Blue / Duck-egg blue
  • Light wood / Dark Wood

The grain is created during the door skin molding process and the skin itself is coloured (not a spray on paint). This gives a really hard wearing and long lasting surface which does not fade or peel off like paint.

The inner workings of the door utilise hardened insulating materials or engineered timber and the unit is bonded together around the edges by uPVC banding. Typically, composite doors are thicker than an average door, coming in at around 44mm to 48mm, this adds strength, sound insulation and rigidity.

You will also find that composite doors fill be fitted into reinforced frames and feature, not only the usual 3 or 5-cylinder mortise lock, but also with multi-point hook locks which engage at several points around the door. This makes them exceptionally secure.

door locks

Timber Exterior Victorian Doors

victorian doorsSome homeowners may have either stripped the original pine doors and refurbished theme or replaced them with high quality, traditionally crafted hardwood exterior doors. Quite a few modern designed Victorian exterior doors are now made of hardwood, such as oak or the maybe one of the African hardwoods such as Idigbo.

When choosing an exterior door, a key consideration is the thickness as the thicker it is the more stable it is likely to be. With hardwoods, ensure that the pattern of the grain and colour match your preference.

Meanwhile, while opting for oak, you should remember that the appearance of English or European oak differs considerably from American white oak. Also ensure that before you buy any door, new or reclaimed, that it is not cracked or warped.

Look out for doors that have not been chemically altered using caustic baths, caution needs to be taken to avoid shrinkage and distortion. It may also loosen joints and raise the grain.

A bespoke exterior timber Victorian door can be finished and maintained using linseed oil or wax, though there’s a lot more that you can do with the details to create a period appeal embraced with modernity for a captivating entrance.

How Much do Timber Victorian Doors Cost?

For a simple 1930s engineered pine door, prices range between £89 -£200. Prices however increase for solid oak doors which range between £495 – £1300.While a more intricate door design goes for up to £1500 on the lower side and could be more.

Prices also differ according to the finishes applied on each unique material. Your style and budget will definitely be your ultimate guide to a bespoke exterior Victorian door.

There are a lot of DIY options for people living in traditional Victorian houses as well as the option to completely replace the exterior door.

The current market is bursting with ideas and options for a bespoke Victorian exterior door. For someone looking for a new door, there are a variety of options to choose from depending on style, budget and need.

Doors are categorized according to width, height, glazing style, prices, materials used and much more.

Standard sizes for front doors in the UK are:

Height                                                Width

6ft 6ins / 1.981m                             2ft 6ins / 0.762m

6ft 6ins / 1.981m                             2ft 9ins / 0.838m

6ft 8ins / 2.032m                             2ft 8ins / 0.813m

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Glazing for Victorian Doors

glazing accentsA common feature of this design is to see a 4 panel setup, where the 2 lower sections are solid and the 2 upper are glazed. Double glazed toughened glass is the best option.

The preferred glazing for Victorian door is one that features patterned or stained glass. Very often you will see quite detailed patterns or even leaded glazing used.

For wider or higher entrances, which can often be the case with Victorian town houses, the use of side and top panels is commonplace. These side panels will very often be glazed and follow the same style of the doors, with the top panels either following suit or being simply clear or frosted.

Final Thoughts

The choice to go with a Victorian style front door, whether you love timber or want to use modern materials is always going to be down to a matter of personal preference.

Whilst those who advocate composite as the ideal material to use for a front door, it is very good, but bear in mind that hardwood (if you look after it) will give decades of trouble free service.