Interior Door Options

By Peter Iodice

Many years ago when I first started my millwork career, I was taught the phrase “points of impact” by a gentleman named Tony Shepley, you may have heard of him. This phrase has stuck with me over the years and is still very prevalent in my career today. The basic principle is you have several situations in daily life where you come in direct contact with something and develop an opinion. Whether it is people, material, a good book, a smooth casting fishing reel, the sound your truck makes when you start your engine or in my case, my daughters favorite stuffed animal “Teddy” she wouldn’t let us leave the house without this morning. All points of impact where you come in direct contact with something and consciously or unconsciously come away with an opinion of that encounter. If you turn the key to your truck and hear a clicking noise rather than the engine turning over, your opinion of that encounter is going to be very different!

The easiest way to envision a point of impact in terms of interior doors is to think of door handles. Every time you open or close a door you look and reach for the door handle and grab it – point of impact. Is that a Baldwin, Emtek, Schlage, Stanley, or Rocky Mountain knob? There is a difference in quality from a $300 handle set to a $20 knob. You create an opinion based on what you feel and see. The installation of the hardware also can make or break your opinion. Have the set screws backed out over time making it feel sloppy? Or is it tight with a 28 degree latch? The difference may be slight but the impact is huge. Hardware options can be overwhelming for me too but our hardware pros at Shepley, Dwayne, Roy & Richard, can help you choose a style to make a memorable point of impact.

Most of the time when homeowners start thinking about the interior of their new home or remodeling project, they mainly focus on kitchens and baths. The kitchen is the heart of the home and quality baths are a necessity. There are so many decisions a homeowner has to make during the construction process. By the time they get to interior doors, many are just picking a style and not diving as deep as the construction and quality of the door. Exterior doors are easier to express the need for quality construction and materials. Our market understands water infiltration, thermal barriers, and moisture control when it comes to exterior doors. We live on a peninsula in the northeast, with all our different seasons from a foot of snow and famed Nor’Eastah’s to
90 degree heat with 100% humidity in the summer, all the while surrounded by salt water. These are not the best conditions for any building material really. Obviously, interior doors are not exposed to the weather, and with our building envelopes being built tighter and tighter for energy conservation, interior doors do not need to be built the same as an exterior door. BUT they are a point of impact and every time you walk into your bedroom and close the door or pull open your closet doors you feel the quality of the door and see the design style as it’s incorporated with rest of your interior millwork too, as does everyone who visits your home. I did some quick math for this article and it really shocked me. In the almost 15 years I’ve worked with Shepley, I’ve shipped/sold over 10,000 interior doors to jobsites. Not to mention, my first year at Shepley I worked in the receiving department and unloaded and inspected hundreds of doors a day. Tractor trailers full of doors would be dropped at our receiving docks and my job was to unload them one by one onto door carts by the house load. Inspecting each one as I flipped them up onto my shoulder (I was in a lot better shape back then) and I’ve had many points of impact with interior doors over the years!             

There are many different factors to consider when choosing interior doors. The key is to find out the top concerns or priorities you or your homeowner have and select the door that is the right fit. Here is a breakdown of the basic categories of interior doors. 

Molded Doors: Typical construction is pressed skins over solid or hollow core and wood edges for hinge screw holding. Available in raised panel designs and flat panels in limited styles (with 45 degree bevel sticking). Approx. 50% of the market is molded doors. Masonite Molded and Jeldwen Molded    

Flush Wood: Oak, Birch, Luan Doors: Typical construction is wood veneer over solid or hollow core, wood edges.

Rail & Stile Primed MDF Faced & Wood: Typical construction is veneered skins over pine or engineered core on the rails and stiles and solid panels, wood edges. Flat panels or raised, shaker or ovolo sticking designs are stocked, with hundreds of special order layouts available. Crisp lines, added depth, more detail than a molded door. WoodGrain, Frameport, Masonite, and Simpson   

Router Carved MDF: Typical construction is solid surface mdf, router carved, with a solid core. Many standard designs and unlimited customized design options. Millennium-Encore

Rail & Stile Solid MDF & Wood: Each door is custom made to order with the highest quality materials and construction techniques. From solid mdf to engineered with book matched wood veneers. These are furniture grade, literally. TruStile and Upstate Door

Please reach out to your Shepley interior trim team for more info or visit the showroom and see the different interior door options available. We will help you and your homeowners choose an interior door that is right for their home and one they will enjoy at that all important, point of impact!              




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