3 Types of Door Knobs and How to Choose One | Plastpro | Plastpro Inc

When it’s time to update or upgrade your door knob, the options are seemingly endless. With a mix of style, security, and finish to consider, it can be daunting to choose just one door knob to meet all of your needs.

When it comes to exterior doors, door knobs are an essential piece of having a secure entryway, and they can also add style and curb appeal to your door. Let’s take a look at the three main types of door knobs and how to choose a style that suits your home.

Types of Door Knobs

While designs vary greatly, there are three common types of door knobs to choose from, each with its own style and functionality.

Traditional Door Knobs

While the classic, rounded door knob isn’t the most original choice, there is plenty of room for adding a personal touch. Characterized by its round or spherical shape, the classic door knob can be found on many exterior doors, though the style and finish can be customized to match front door color and style. Because the classic style is the most common, it’s easy to find a plethora of options at most hardware retailers. These door knobs also typically come equipped with a locking mechanism.

Door Lever

Door levers are a common alternative to the classic, rounded door knob. Like traditional knobs, door levels often feature a locking mechanism within the lever. In terms of functionality, door levers can be easier to operate than traditional door knobs, being that the lever works up-and-down, rather than needing to be turned. This is why door levers are commonly found on commercial buildings as they are ADA compliant.

In addition to functionality, door levers provide additional design flair that works well for a variety of homes. For example, ornate door levers can add a dash of flair to vintage home styles, while a modern, minimalist style home will benefit from an angular door lever design with clean, straight lines.

Handle Sets

Handle sets are a popular, versatile option that infuse the aesthetic of a door handle on the exterior and the functionality of a door knob or lever on the interior. Unlike traditional door knobs and door levers, this design typically requires a deadbolt lock as the door handle does not feature a locking mechanism.

Like door knobs and door levers, handle sets come in a variety of designs and styles. For example, an ornate handle set works great for Victorian homes, while sharp, angular designs are great picks for modern or rustic homes.

Choosing a Door Knob Finish

Once you’ve chosen the type of door knob that’s right for you, the next step is choosing the finish. Matching the finish with the type of door knob and overall home style can boost your front door curb appeal. Let’s take a look at some of the most common finishes and what they pair well with.


A nickel finish will work for a wide range of both traditional and contemporary door styles. Specifically, satin nickel is a popular exterior door knob finish. It provides a textured look and works well with mid-century style homes and darker front door colors such as navy blue. Opting for a traditional door knob type will accent the classic, timeless feelings of these homes.


Brass is a classic door knob finish that provides a sense of vintage elegance, making it a great choice for Victorian or Colonial homes. A bright, polished brass finish provides a dash of glamor that complements these styles especially well.

For those looking for a more subtle shade, antique brass is another popular choice for exterior doors. As opposed to the boldness of polished brass, antique brass gives off a sense of warmth that pairs well with natural design features such as stone or wood.


Bronze door knobs feature a dark brown tone that changes over time as the knob is handled. The dark shade lends itself to a feeling of luxury and sophistication—an aged bronze finish is a stunning fit for Craftsman-style homes and other traditional architectural styles. Its synergy with natural colors also makes it an excellent choice for Rustic or Mediterranean homes. In this case, a handle set can be a top choice.


A chrome finish is a great way to infuse vintage, Art Deco charm into modern designs. This makes it an excellent choice for homes with a minimalist style. Pair a bright chrome finish and an angular door lever or handle set for a perfect blend of modern design.


Black is a very versatile finish choice that can accent nearly any home style. Modern homes can benefit from a sleek, matte black door lever, while a traditional black door knob can be a stoic addition to the Colonial style.

A black finish also works great for rustic door knobs, especially set against a dark wood grain design. Plastpro’s Rustic Door Series features a deep, rich natural wood color and a variety of wrought iron accessories that pair perfectly with a black door knob—consider a handleset for a dash of elegance.

Putting it All Together

Door hardware and accessories can make a huge impact on the overall style and curb appeal of your home. Selecting the type of door knob that fits not only your personal preferences, but also your exterior door and home can be a great way to tie your entryway together.

In addition to the style and type of door knob you choose, be sure to take into consideration the best exterior door locks to get both style and security with your front door. And don’t forget the most important part: the door itself. Plastpro’s selection of fiberglass doors ensures that you can find the right style to match your home along with enhanced durability, energy efficiency, and door security.

To find the right fiberglass door for your home, visit our Where to Buy page to learn where to get a Plastpro door near you.

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