The Great Interior Door Debate – Hollow Core vs. Solid Core Interior Doors

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  • The Great Interior Door Debate – Hollow Core vs. Solid Core Interior Doors

There are two common interior door types used in residential construction: hollow core and solid core. Each door is constructed differently and has its own unique advantages and disadvantages.

When choosing interior doors, it is important to consider which door type will best suit your needs, lifestyle, and budget.

We’ve broken down some differences between hollow core and solid core doors to show you how they stack up in three main categories – sound and heat insulation, longevity, and finally, cost.



Hollow core doors are the most commonly used interior door in mid-priced new homes. They are constructed with a thin layer of wood or fiberboard applied over a honeycombed cardboard or plastic core. Hollow core doors have made great strides in quality compared to the early years and are lightweight and easy to move and install.

Sound & Heat Insulation – Hollow core doors have minimal sound blocking quality, and the air pockets inside allow more heat to pass through.

Longevity – Though these doors are stable and will rarely warp or swell, they are structurally weak and prone to damage. Also, hollow core doors are much harder to modify and repair due to their hollow nature.

Cost – Hollow core doors are significantly less expensive and are often used as a cost-saving feature in a new home.


Solid core doors are constructed with quality wood veneers glued over a solid core of engineered wood and present homeowners with a hybrid material that features benefits from both solid wood and hollow core doors. The main drawback is that solid core doors are heavier than even solid wood doors, making them more challenging to move or install.

Sound & Heat Insulation – The thicker, denser material of solid core doors muffles sound more effectively, giving them excellent noise-canceling qualities. Also, as a solid material, this door serves better at insulating against heat loss.

Longevity – The design and construction of solid core doors make them resistant to expansion and contraction. These doors are sturdy and have outstanding lasting durability, and will need little maintenance over time.

Cost – These fairly-priced doors are considerably more affordable than solid wood doors while presenting a higher perceived resale value than its hollow core counterpart.



Choosing the right interior door is a decision that needs to be made based on an analysis of costs vs. benefits. While hollow core doors are less expensive, lighter, and easier to install, solid core doors have a higher perceived value, are a more quality and durable material, and are much better at insulating sound and heat.

With that said, choosing which type of interior door to install doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing proposition. Consider mixing up your door types with solid core doors installed where sound may be an issue, such as bedrooms, bathrooms, or home office, and hollow core doors installed at closets and pantry doors, which require little insulation or soundproofing.




Whether your project is new construction, a remodel, or renovation, our team of door experts at California Window & Door can help you with all your interior door needs – from selection and design to installation. We work with some of the finest door manufacturers to provide our customers with a vast selection of interior door options. Give us a call at 760-773-1053 to schedule a consultation.

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