Heat buildup between storm door & entry door
Last Post 18 Nov 2010 09:25 AM by geome. 3 Replies.
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geomeUser is Offline
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16 Nov 2010 03:59 PM
Hi all.  We are in the process of replacing our entry door with a white fiberglass door.  We will also be purchasing a storm door with a white frame and full-view single pane glass and interchangeable screen (Anderson 4000 series).

Due to concern over heat buildup between the storm door and the entry door, we are thinking about having a film applied on the inside of the storm door glass.  Our main concern is protecting the door from heat and UV.

The local film installer said he has a product that has the installed appearance of low-e glass, and that it blocks a total of 55% UV and IR from getting through (I'm not sure on the details.)  There is a lifetime warranty from the manufacturer on the film for peeling, cracking, etc.  About $90 installed.  We want the entry door to be seen through the storm door glass from the street, so I don't believe we can go with higher protection than this.  It sounds like film that provides higher protection gets more heavily tinted, or mirrored, both of which are not desirable to us.

Also, Anderson has an option for double pane glass, but we don't know if the benefits outweigh the $60 (I believe) price increase and the extra weight on the hinges/frame.  This option appears to have the same frame and locking mechanism as the single pane glass.  Any thoughts on the single vs double pane option (with or without film on either the single or double pane)?

It can get very windy here.  We are switching the hinged side of the storm door to help minimize (but not eliminate) the wind from ripping the storm door out of our hand and taking chunks out of the door frame (where the closers are) in the process (like happened to the prior owners of this house.)  Just mentioning this since double pane glass will be heavier (I assume) and can possibly do as much damage to the frame with less wind force.

We would prefer to leave the glass in all year long, but aren't very opposed to putting the screen in if we should in order to protect the door, and for energy efficiency too.

P.S.  Background - The current door is steel, painted a medium dark color, and faces WSW.  We have a covered porch that extends 8' out from the door, but the porch height is 11'.  All this being said, you still wouldn't want to touch the outside of the current steel door the summer sun (it's just too hot), and the airspace gets extremely hot as well.  We are in SW Virginia.  We don't care for storm doors with sliding glass with a built in screen.

Please feel free to comment on any or all of this.  We could use some help sorting this out. 
Homeowner with WF Envision NDV038 (packaged) & NDZ026 (split), one 3000' 4 pipe closed horizontal ground loop, Prestige thermostats, desuperheaters, 85 gal. Marathon.
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16 Nov 2010 05:14 PM
Facing WSW it'll cook the front door with or without the window film.

Un-treated, the solar gain of the single-pane version will be higher than the insulated-glass version, but with window film on it it'll be somewhat lower. Window film on the insulated glass version would likely cause the seal to fail.

IIRC the insulated glass version of the Anderson 4000 series is NOT seasonally-swappable with a screen, but the single-pane version is. If your door is R5 or more, the additional thermal loss of going single pane is negligible, but with the low-E film on the interior of the glass it'll be slightly improved when it's REALLY cold out.

If there was a way to set it up with operable vents top & bottom it could thermosiphon most of the heat away (or into conditioned space, thermal-air-panel heater style) and put an upper-bound on the temp, but I'm not sure it's worth the effort. The cross-sectional area of the vents would have to be fairly large to keep the door down to say, 120F, with 65F incoming air. A ~20 square foot WSW facing thermosiphoning thermal air panel would bag about 1-2 mega-BTUs of heat during the heating season, but somehow I don't think this is your goal, eh? :-)

And chance of protecting it from getting direct afternoon sun with trellis shades or something on the perimeter of the porch?

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17 Nov 2010 09:42 AM
Posted By Dana1 on 16 Nov 2010 05:14 PM


And chance of protecting it from getting direct afternoon sun with trellis shades or something on the perimeter of the porch?


I was thinking along the same lines... or maybe plant a tree or 2 in-line with the summer sun.  In the summer the leaves from the tree would help block the sun from hitting the door.  In the winter, the leaves would be off of the tree, allowing sunlight to shine on the door.
I built my home with the help of Pierson-Gibbs Homes, "The Hands on House". They build the shell, you finish it. www.p-ghomes.com
geomeUser is Offline
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18 Nov 2010 09:25 AM
Thank you both for your replies. I should have checked back sooner. I thought I would automatically get email notification of replies, but that didn't happen.

Good point on the likely seal failure.

It sounds like a single pane with film in the winter, and swapping the screen for the glass in the summer is the way to go.

The walkway to the porch is directly in front of the door so screening probably isn't an option. Ordinarily a tree would work, but since we get strong winds from the west (55mph gusts two nights ago and up to 75mph a few times per year) (we are close to mountains) we really didn't want to put a tree within falling distance of the house. Maybe a location a bit more south of the front of the house would delay the afternoon sun a bit and still be able to fall clear (hopefully.) Advise on strongly rooted trees would also be welcome.

Yep, the Anderson 4000 has a third glass option (security glass with multiple locking points) that is not removable.

Any thought on protecting the storm door in the event the wind takes the storm door for a ride? I don't really want a wind chain (it would probably scratch the window film anyway.) What do people do? We may have guests and a child that cannot simply "hang on". :-)

When we remember, we will go through the garage car door when it is windy, and keep the storm door locked 100% of the time (so neighbors & delivery people can't inadvertently leave the door ajar), but I'd still like to protect the storm door somehow from unexpected gusts.
Homeowner with WF Envision NDV038 (packaged) & NDZ026 (split), one 3000' 4 pipe closed horizontal ground loop, Prestige thermostats, desuperheaters, 85 gal. Marathon.
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