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Differentiating Commercial Doors from Residential Doors

Commercial Wood Door

A door is a moveable barrier that allows a person to enter or exit premises. Doors provide access, security, and safety from the elements. Almost every structure requires a door, but the type of structure determines the type of door that is required. Commercial doors and residential doors have essentially the same underlying function, and that’s allowing access and providing security. But they have numerous differences, and it is these differences that determine their functionality.

What Is a Commercial Entry Door?

A commercial entry door provides access to commercial premises such as schools, hospitals, businesses, factories, and office buildings. 

These doors are made to withstand greater usage and more force than residential doors face, and they provide greater security. They are manufactured specifically for commercial use and are not interchangeable with residential.

The Differences

There are obvious differences between commercial and residential doors, but it’s more than just how they look. Residential doors come in a large range of styles and colors, but commercial doors also come in a vast range of visual options. In fact, these are highly customizable to suit all manner of businesses.

Commercial entry doors are required to meet a range of building codes and specifications. These codes cover protection, emergencies, sizing, hardware, disability access, and more. Residential properties also have codes regarding egress doors, but they are not as stringent and regulated as doors for commercial properties. 


Modern commercial entry doors are generally much larger and taller than residential doors. The specifications for the size of the doors are dictated by building codes with a minimum width of 32 inches and a maximum of 48 inches. There are exceptions, including medical facilities. 

The height of a commercial door is to be a minimum of 80 inches tall, and the thickness a minimum of one-and-three-quarter inches. Commercial entry doors are usually better insulated than residential doors. Residential doors are most commonly 36 inches wide and have a height of 80 inches. 


Because commercial doors receive so much use, they require hardware that can withstand the force yet is safe for employees and customers. As a rule, commercial hardware has an ASI grade of one or two, with one being the most heavy-duty.

Commercial building requirements specify that the hardware is UL Listing and ADA Compliant. Residential entry door hardware is generally a grade three, as it doesn’t receive the same wear and tear.


Modern entry doors are the frontline of security, so they need to be strong. CDF Distributors manufactures high-quality steel commercial doors, commercial wood doors, aluminum glass storefront doors, fire-rated, and prefinished wood. Not only are they strong, but they meet all codes and requirements.

Residential entry doors are made of wood, metal, or fiberglass, and they can be fitted with deadbolts for security, but they are unable to withstand the same amount of force and regular use.


Like other mounting hardware, these locks need to be of a higher grade than residential locks. These locks are usually heavy-duty grade 1 locks, which are the most secure and the strongest for heavy use. 


A business of any type holds confidential personal information, machinery or equipment, financial records, and stock. Every commercial site needs the security of a strong entry door for protection. 

Not only is the strength needed for security, but as they are opened and closed repeatedly, they need to be able to withstand constant use without splitting or breaking.


When it comes to buying a residential entry door, you can buy a cheap one or a very expensive one. It comes down to how you want it to look and how strong you need it to be. 

They need to meet building codes and standards, so they are generally more expensive. Less expensive commercial doors are available, but they don’t have the lifespan of a high-quality commercial entry door. 

When it comes to choosing, it’s a wise investment to go with a reputable manufacturer who will stand by its product. You can’t put a price on safety, security, and quality.

Superior Quality for Every Business

Commercial doors have to withstand heavy traffic and constant use. They must also meet strict building codes and safety standards in a way that residential doors do not. 

CDF Distributors manufactures high-quality commercial doors that are suitable for every structure. Contact us today for a quote!










June 21, 2022
Wayne Foreman

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