External Doors Material Guide

PVC French Door

The external doors you choose for your house make a significant impact in a range of practical and stylistic ways to its form, accessibility, and livability. As a step in the design process, take the time to learn about how the materials of your doors promote flow, security and comfort for each area of the house they’re connected to. In this post, we’ve put together a guide so that you have key information and ideas for your new doors. Enhance your home while making a statement with these material options for timeless, stylish and durable doors.

Material type 1. Aluminium


Aluminium doors earned their popularity due to their:

  • Attractive appearance
  • Functional features
  • Strength
  • Rigidity
  • Lightweight
  • Easy use

They’re also a reliable material and able to withstand, with minimal to no wear, the low temperatures of colder climates like in Ireland.


Aluminium is a robust material that responds to easy care extending the life of these doors. These doors are most often used for feature sliding doors and bi-fold doors as the frames are strong enough to hold large glass panes. Additionally, this resilient material offers good security without sacrificing aesthetic appeal. For environmentally conscious homeowners, aluminium is a widely recycled material and all Senator frame profiles are made from 100% recycled aluminium, whose superior strength means slimmer, narrower frames and larger glass areas with greater uninterrupted views.


To care for aluminium doors, all you need is water, a mild detergent and a clean cloth or rag. Always avoid strong cleaners including solvents that contain abrasive ingredients like chlorine. While a lapse in cleaning shouldn’t affect aluminium’s appearance, certain doors can have specialist maintenance directives for parts of the frame. Depending on the design, and to avoid issues, you should take note of these during purchase to keep your doors in peak condition.

In Your Home

Aluminium doors let even more light in with the strong frames perfect for larger glass doors, as well as windows. Not only are they a fabulous way to make a feature and maximise space in your home, the aluminium frame’s thermal properties mean you can enjoy natural light year round without feeling the cold. Aluminium is design friendly for different areas so you can choose both large and small windows as well to create a bright, airy home.

aluminium Lift and Slide doors

Material type 2. Composite


Composite doors are made from a modern material known for its longevity and energy efficiency that is preferred for its:

  • Toughness
  • Combination of a range of high-performance materials including PVC and wood
  • Lightweight design
  • Insulation
  • Strength

Senator offers a custom build for you with a wide selection of composite doors and finishes meaning you can incorporate your preferred on-trend hardware, colour, and glass panels.


Composites are defined by their weather resistant properties and suit a range of climates to keep the warmth in and the cold out. This material is highly durable so even if the door faces severe weather conditions or consistent extreme exposure it will withstand the elements while looking great. Composite doors are also renowned for minimising draughts which is good news for your energy bill and year-round comfort in your home.


Composite doors are low-maintenance with minimal effort required when removing any residue from daily use and the environment. Use a non-abrasive soft sponge and warm soapy water, with every day detergents like hand soap or washing up liquid both working well. Make sure to avoid the use of harsh chemicals (as with aluminium doors) as they have the potential to damage the composite door’s outer finish. It’s easy to keep your door looking fresh and free of grime once you take the time to regularly clean it!

In Your Home

Composite doors are ideal for your home’s front door and back door. Even with the impact of prolonged day-to-day use, these doors experience little to no noticeable wear. When you also take into account the composite thermal properties, security features that deter burglars, and range of customisation options, it’s a winning door for both a traditional or a modern house.

Material type 3. uPVC


This common material is favoured for doors, as well as windows, due to its:

  • Durability
  • Elegance
  • Lightweight design
  • Energy efficiency
  • Functionality for a range of doors and windows

uPVC has many insulating layers that work to keep the elements out without compromising on style or home security.


uPVC is a low maintenance, hard wearing material that makes it a great choice for your home for a number of reasons. For doors as well as windows, uPVC can be made into a range of sleek design options that will withstand chilly days and heatwaves all while boosting energy efficiency. You can customise uPVC for your home that, following an easy installation, ensures daily lifestyle gains in terms of year-round ease of use no matter the climate or season.


uPVC is a dream in terms of maintenance and care. Regular gentle washing with warm soapy water will remove grime and any atmospheric deposits on the surface. As with both aluminium and composite external doors, you do need to avoid cleaning with solvents like ammonia. Your only other cleaning commitment is making sure to clean the door’s seals carefully. Overall, the uPVC door profiles including both colour and surface stay looking brand new with minimal elbow grease required.

In Your Home

uPVC doors and windows are a winning option across your entire home. From the outside, uPVC external doors provide excellent shelter from the Irish elements and the security details mean everyone will feel secure. The long-lasting finish suits front and back doors, patio doors, and space-saving sliding options that keep your home cosy and functional. Whether you’re completing a new build or renovating, uPVC doors are fully customised to suit the layout and lifestyle needs while the material is a flattering, sleek design addition to your home

Taking the time to decide the right materials for your external doors will make a difference to the complete package of your home’s look, feel, flexibility and value. While aluminium folding doors can connect spaces like the garden and outdoors to your home, Senator’s beautiful selection of composite front doors and our uPVC French doors can transform your patio or entertaining area. The most important thing is to make sure you’re choosing the right materials for your home and everyone living there.

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