All You Gotta Do Is Ask

So, true story. The day after I typed up Monday’s post, where I said, “Now if I could just find a storm door for $20,” I found a storm door. Not for $20, but it was a steal.

Now don’t go thinking this is how life happens. It doesn’t. I didn’t just start looking for a storm door after I found a new front door. I wasn’t like, “I need a storm door for a bargain” and then run right out and get one. I’ve been on the lookout for both of them. It just so happens that I found them a couple days apart.

I went into Lowe’s to get some sand for my little guy, because I’m half scared he’s going to dig to China via that tiny little spot by the plumping pipes. He needs a bottom to his digging area.


I swung by the “open box” area in the windows and doors section. I found this Larson door.  I have been reading reviews and a few have been sticking in my head. Like this one. I kept getting that review mixed up with all of these reviews for the Comfort-Bilt door.

Obviously the Larson has a much better rating overall, but that one review had the same issues that the people were having with the Comfort-Bilt. Because of that, I was getting them mixed up.

I know that seemingly means nothing, but stay with me.

I figured that we could work with those issues. Poor instructions don’t scare me off. (That was a common complaint with the Comfort-Bilt, but I was thinking it applied to the Larson also.) As far as the glass clips go, I figured that since we know it’s an issue, we’ll take special care in that step and deal with it. I’ve read enough reviews of products I’ve used myself to figure out that many times people just don’t have the patience or skill to do it correctly. Poor reviews concerning quality scare me off, but if it is a matter of self assembly I don’t worry too much about it.

Anyway, I bought the Larson door that was running together with the Comfort-Bilt door in my head, and it wasn’t until I got home and looked up the reviews to post about it that I realized I got the better rated one. (Hooray!)

storm door

Either way, the poor review is what scored me a great deal…

A helpful associate walked by while I was looking at the door and asked if I needed any help. I asked if he had the authority to change prices and he said no but that he’d find me someone.

The door was already marked 50% off of retail, which seems to be standard procedure for Lowe’s if it’s an open box/return. But that was still over one hundred dollars.


That’s way more than I wanted to spend and I hadn’t been having any luck with storm doors and I’m getting impatient because this is the best time of year for using them.

Now, this is the United States of America. Lowe’s is a retail establishment. I do not suggest trying to haggle as a normal practice. But, I know that Lowe’s is willing to come down on their open box items because I’ve had department managers tell me that before. One time we were looking at something and the guy just came over and said, “make me a deal” and it was already marked way down.

They don’t want returned items sitting on the sales floor. It makes customers who are willing to pay full price question the quality and therefore the purchase of an item. They don’t want people questioning. They just want them purchasing.

I don’t make a habit of asking for a lowered price, because the item is already marked way down and they’ll mark it down again if it sits there very long. I’m not that person. I pay full price at garage sales unless it’s the very end of the day and it is obvious the person just wants to get back to their life. I usually just walk away if I think the price is too high. But there are exceptions. Like I really, really wanted a storm door.

The guy with authority came over and asked how he could help. I asked if this was the best he could do. He kinda hesitated and thought and said he could do $80. The look on my face made him change it to $70 quickly. “I’ll do $80…how ‘bought $70?” I mentioned that I was aware of the difficulty with the glass clips and told him I’d pay $50. “Deal.” Then I asked if I’d be able to return it if I found it too difficult to work with. Bless his heart. He let out a defeated sigh, smiled, and said “of course.” “Thanks Sam!”

price reduced

I came home and thoroughly impressed the hubs. He said, “you’ve had an awesome shopping week. You got $600 worth of doors for $70.” Actually it was $691 ($467+$224), which means I “saved” him $621. (I think it’s funny when people say they “save” money while spending it. That’s why I always put quotes when using it that way.) I’m expecting the difference back in the form of an awesome Mother’s Day gift. (Are you reading this, babe?)

We had a plumbing issue at a rent house one evening and company the next night, so we haven’t had time to hang it yet. Hopefully I can show you that after the weekend, but I did finish priming and painting the interior molding around the front door.

Same as always, I had to caulk some areas that would show up dark once all of this was white.



This wood was pretty beat up.

nicks dent scratches

So I had to do lots of sanding and used wood filler in several areas to get my wood in the best condition possible before priming.

I used latex primer since I didn’t want the mess or smell of oil.

water primer

It was just this small area so even though I needed one more coat than what oil would have required, it was a worthy trade off in this case. If it had been a larger area, it would have been worth the mess of oil to save time on additional coats, but the molding around one door is not too big of a deal. (The baseboards that meet this door molding had already been painted when I did the hallway.)


The old hinges were brass. I briefly considered oil-rubbed bronze to match the doorknob and peephole, but ultimately decided I wanted white so they wouldn’t standout between the white molding and white door.

New hinges aren’t expensive, but why spend another $12 if you don’t have to? I pushed the screws into a piece of cardboard for easy spray painting.

screws painted screws

I sanded the hinges lightly and sprayed them. Apparently I didn’t get a picture of that.

Here’s what it looks like now that the door is hung and all the trim is finished.


I love it. It looks like Christie Brinkley now!

What do you think? Would you have gone with ORB/black hinges?

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  1. Pingback: Storm Door Completion. Finally. | Who Took My Tape Measure

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