Replacement doors make immediate impact

  • Two-panel doors are a popular selection for their simplicity and clean lines.

    Two-panel doors are a popular selection for their simplicity and clean lines. Courtesy of HomeStory Chicago

  • HomeStory makes and installs replacement interior doors in a number of styles.

    HomeStory makes and installs replacement interior doors in a number of styles.

By Jean Murphy
Daily Herald Correspondent

Imagine completely transforming and updating the doors throughout your home without any on-site construction, paint cans or tarps littering your living spaces, and without estimated completion dates coming and going without progress.

It is possible and, believe it or not, it doesn't have to cost an arm and leg, said Kate Zeller, general manager for HomeStory Chicago in Elk Grove Village.

Replacing a home's interior doors has always made a big difference in the look of a house. But until recently, the mess and expense involved served as a deterrent to making that change. Doors had to be cut, planed and then painted on site. So, it was a time-consuming and messy process.

That is no longer the case, however, Zeller said. HomeStory is literally taking a home renovation that used to take lots of time and involved hiring a contractor, and are transforming it into something that only takes a couple of hours or days, depending on the number of doors involved.

"Today you can transform an entire home by replacing old, uninspiring doors with stylish new doors with almost no hassle, thanks to major advances in technology," Zeller said.

Doors serve as a backdrop and help make your decor more cohesive, so replacing the interior doors within a home is, arguably, the least expensive remodeling job a homeowner can do with the most overall impact.

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For instance, busy-looking hallways filled with an abundance of six-panel doors can be made more contemporary and elegant by substituting calmer, less distracting two-panel doors.

Similarly, homes filled with 1960s and 1970s-era flat surface, or "flush," doors can be enhanced and immeasurably upgraded with the substitution of doors using some sort of panel configuration.

HomeStory's door-measuring technology generates custom replacement doors by taking 13 precise digital measurements and capturing the geometry of the existing door frame. Using those measurements, new doors are uniquely milled on an automated door machine and then painted, all in the factory rather than in a customer's house.

Installed in minutes, the custom-fitting doors close properly, preventing any drafts and making the home much quieter and more energy efficient.

"The precision of the process allows HomeStory to update any home, regardless of how and when it was built," said Zeller. "With our technology, we are even able to accommodate homes that are very old."


Doors and frames can shift over time as a house settles and fixing the ill-fitting doors that result once involved planing down the existing door and then repainting it on site. People also ran into problems when they replaced carpeting with hardwood floors, leaving them with large gaps at the bottoms of their doors. HomeStory can also correct these issues.

In addition, since the doors are painted in the factory, you won't see any brush or roller marks and installation is seamless. Delivery from the HighMark Digital factory in Sacramento, California, generally takes three to six weeks once the measurements are taken, although the company's most popular doors can often be quick-shipped in only three or four weeks.

HomeStory offers molded panel doors made of composite wood in a choice of hollow core or solid core versions. They also offer medium density fiberboard (MDF) doors, made by Tru Stile. These offer the heft and feel of real wood, but won't shrink, expand or warp like wood doors. They are also architecturally correct in their construction, eco-friendly and more affordable than wood. However, solid wood, mirrored, bi-fold, bypass and glass-panel doors are also available from HomeStory.

Zeller said homeowners tend to choose solid core doors for hallways and bedrooms in order to cut down on noise and they sometimes choose to go with matching hollow core doors on closets in order to save money.


An almost infinite number of hardware choices for hinges and lock sets is also offered and homeowners may also choose to re-use the ones they already have in order to economize.

Zeller said HomeStory offers seven different shades of white, a black and a tan color, as well as multiple styles of door to fit with any decor. Wood grain doors can also be sealed with a clear coat.

A hot new trend, she said, is for people to mix stained door frames with white doors, for an updated look. Mirrored doors in which the mirrors are inlaid into the door, not just attached to it, are also very popular, especially for closets, and can be installed as bypass sliders, not just on hinges.

For information, visit or call (847) 258-3417.

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