Choosing Inswing Versus Outswing Door
At Price’s Guaranteed Doors, we’re your one-stop shop for all entry doors and security doors. We have a wide variety of materials and style options available, and our professionals can walk you through every element of your choice to make sure you get a door that fits both your home’s style and its practical needs.
One of the first big choices you’ll make when purchasing any new door for your home will revolve around which way the door swings. Both inswing and outswing doors are options you’ll have available, and depending on the area of the home and the contents of a given room or exterior space, you might choose one or the other. Even if your decision seems obvious, here are some basic tips to know about inswing and outswing doors.
There are a few basic building codes that tend to be fairly consistent across the country when it comes to swing direction:
- Snow-prone areas: In any climate where large snow storms can take place, all entry and patio doors must swing inward so they won’t become trapped in a home if lots of snow builds up.
- Public doors: Doors in commercial buildings always swing outward, per the International Building Code. This is to maintain safety and order during an evacuation – an inswing door could cause panicking people to press up against it and be trapped inside.
- Hurricane-prone areas: Inswing doors can be pushed open more easily than outswing doors, so the latter are recommended for these areas.
- Outswing doors are more protective of the home’s interior in heavy climates. Wind and water have more trouble infiltrating them due to the threshold design, plus basic physics.
- Inswing doors, on the flip side, are more susceptible to wind and water because of their design. They will require adjusting the sweep gasket more often, plus replacing worn weatherstripping, but this is actually a very limited cost in most climates.
- Outswing doors have a positive stop with a compression gasket, which creates a weather-tight seal using no friction. This makes the door easy to open.
- Inswing doors have a sweep gasket, but friction is necessary for a full seal. This can mean that some inswing doors open a bit more stiffly.
- Outswing doors are notably difficult to force open from outside, making them great for security areas. On the flip side, though, hinges are on the outside, meaning if security is a concern, you have to choose a style without removable pins.
- Inswing doors have their hinges on the inside, which means you don’t need to worry about them being pried off. However, they can be forced open a bit more easily – but this can be combated by installing heavy-duty strike plates and deadbolt locks.