Whether it is your front door, or any other exterior-facing entry door of your home, there is typically a “useful” life component attached to any type of question as to how long one of these should last, before needing to be replaced.
There are a variety of factors that play into when it makes the most sense to look at replacing an entry door.
One area of focus could be whether it seems like you are losing energy through the door.
Whether it is heat in the Winter time or cool air in the Summer time, most folks would prefer the energy to stay within their household and not release it into the neighborhood if at all possible.
Do you notice any major warpedness or disconfiguration with the door?
Although it is not necessarily unusual for doors to change their original form over a period of time, there certainly is such a thing as “too much” of a shape change.
Rotted beyond repair door rot is also one of the easiest ways to recognize that your door needs to be replaced.
I am not referring to the trim around the door, as usually the trim can fairly easily be changed out if ever necessary.
I am instead referring to either the door itself, or, what most commonly happens, the exterior-facing portion of the door jamb (which is the side of the door frame that the door runs into perpendicularly).
The rotted door jamb conversation often gets me into, what I consider, a losing-battle discussion with highly capable Master Carpenters, who plead with me that the rot in the jamb can be surgically removed and a new piece of wood installed in place of the rot.
Technically, they are correct.
My mentality however is that when the jamb starts to go, the door is “toast”.
With the door products that are available on the market today, fortunately or unfortunately (depending on how you look at it), it is more cost-efficient to pay for a new door and change it out than it would be to buy some time by repairing the old jamb which, in my mind, is only temporarily delaying the inevitable.
The exception to this would be a really “solid”, older door where you simply would not be able to replace it with what is on the market today.
The age old saying, “They don’t make them like they used to” is highly applicable in having a dialogue about door replacement.
As an example, a solid wood door made 50 years ago, will be light years ahead in terms of durability in comparison to anything that most consider reasonably priced on today’s market.
The reasons for this are a combination of the raw door-making materials not being as readily available in the modern world, along with the fact that it is nearly impossible for manufacturers to produce these doors in a manner that would allow them to sufficiently sell them to consumers, at a volume which would make it worth it for them to do so.
Although it is difficult to pinpoint the exact moment of when it is best to change an exterior entry door out, there are absolutely various signs that one can rely on which help determine when it might be time to do so, subsequent to any LARGER issues developing that extend outside of the door in question itself.