How To Choose The Right Fireplace Door

Fireplace doors are an integral part of a fireplace. They serve many purposes, come in many different colors, and can totally transform any fireplace.

The first step is properly measuring the fireplace opening. Although most fireplaces are rectangular, some are square and others arched. For pricing purposes measure the width and height of the opening. Please leave all final measuring to a professional, especially an arched opening. Based on these measurements, most retailers will give you an accurate price as to the cost of the door. If you hired a construction recruitment agency for this make sure you talk to them about this and they can even offer you the best position for this as well.


There are many different ways to finish the metal of a fireplace door.

1. Powder coat finishes are great because they come in many different colors and match most everything in a home. These “painted finishes” are baked on so they’re extremely durable and inexpensive.

2. Plated finishes were very popular but are making a resurgence. With the popularity of satin nickel, stainless steel and chrome amongst others, these finishes are costly. Doors frames are cut then dipped into a vat and electroplated resulting in an incredible finish.

Incredible is costly however.

3. Overlay finishes are steel doors with thin layers of polished metal “overlaid” onto them giving the appearance of a plated door. While the look is nice, durable and less costly than plating the visible seams sometimes cheapens the look and the polished metal sections usually don’t line up correctly. Under low lighting its fine but these inconsistencies may bother you.

Bear in mind most manufactures allow you to mix and match metal finishes. For example you may choose to do a powder coat main frame with plated doors.

Door style.

There are basically two styles of doors-cabinet commonly called twin doors and bi-fold doors. Cabinet doors are like your kitchen cabinets. Bi-fold doors have two panels per section that fold onto each other when you open them. Unless you have a lot of clearance on the side of the fireplace to open cabinet doors, bi-fold doors are the better choice because they take up less space when open.

Other options.

You can have the glass tinted. Keep in mind, probably 90% of the time you will not be using the fireplace and typically the firebox is pretty dirty with ashes and smoke stained walls. The static look is important. Having tinted glass like grey or bronze helps hide this mess and also compliments the TV screen that’s usually hanging above the fireplace.

You can opt for floral patterns on the glass, etching, window panes, and different handles as well various hinges. To prevent sparks from jumping out of the firebox sliding mesh is still an option but solid screen doors are the norm.

Another choice is the damper option. A damper allows you to control the air fed to a fire. As the fire dies down you could close the doors, close the damper and allow the fire to extinguish faster or leave the damper open while the doors are closed and let the fire slowly die.

If cold air is a problem than consider an air tight option. Air tight doors are gasketed which creates an air tight seal that helps prevent both the loss of heat and the infiltration of cold air.

Some people want to burn with the doors closed. This is made possible by having ceramic glass. Although a costly option, ceramic glass can withstand temperatures of 2000 degrees without breaking while regular tempered glass starts to weaken rapidly at around 600 degrees.

Before entering the store clearly define why you want in a door and know that most new construction requires the installation of a fireplace door in order to conform to the energy conservation code.

There are many reasons for investing in a fireplace door. Whether it’s to keep your kids and pets out of the firebox, prevent heat from escaping up the chimney or to seal a drafty fireplace, installing a fireplace door is like putting a window on an open hole in your house. Only there are many more options available to conform with the look your after.

With over 15 years in the business, John Troiano is an expert when it comes to decorative and functional fire.