Lucky Illinois Homeowners Win Dramatic Entry Door Makeovers in Therma-Tru’s Ugliest Door™ Contest

Maumee, OHIO, (September 02, 2010) - Illinois may be famous for its sports teams and its "Windy City," but now it has a new claim to fame as home to two of the ugliest doors in the country. Two Illinois homeowners have been named winners of Therma-Tru's Ugliest Door contest, a competition to identify the most unappealing home entry doors.

Wade and Tara Scharlau of Maple Park won in the essay category for the worn down entry to their historical home, and Judy Gruszcynski of Rockford won in the video category after sharing her wish for a welcoming new door for her home. Both homeowners, whose winning ugly doors can be seen here, will receive dramatic door makeovers valued up to $5,000 to complement their homes' architectural styles.

The ever-popular competition invited homeowners to visit and submit entries in a choice of two formats - either a written 150-word essay with two photos, or a 90-second narrated video - creatively highlighting their door's utter ugliness. After the finalists were named, Therma-Tru allowed the public to cast their vote for the entries they believed to be the ugliest. A record 5,712 votes were cast and the finalists generated nearly 400 comments from site visitors.

"The competition was tough and there were a lot of ugly doors entered in the contest," said Sara Theis Alcroft, senior manager, brand marketing, Therma-Tru. "In the end, we believe we've found two of the ugliest doors and are excited to see the transformations the new Therma-Tru doors will make to the curb appeal and energy efficiency of the homes."

Door Prizes Awarded
The winners' front entries will soon receive the full makeover treatment with beautiful, low-maintenance Therma-Tru fiberglass door systems that increase the energy efficiency of the homes. Therma-Tru's fiberglass doors offer four times the insulation of a wood door - something both winners will appreciate- and are ENERGY STAR qualified and certified by the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC), helping homeowners save money on energy costs and protect the environment through superior energy efficiency. In fact the average R-value (measure of thermal resistance) of a Therma-Tru fiberglass door is almost as insulating as the wall of an average home.

What's more, the new fiberglass doors won't rot, swell or peel like their current doors and will increase the curb appeal of their homes while adding value. According to Remodeling magazine's annual Cost vs. Value report, which is a survey conducted by the magazine to determine the return on investment for common remodeling projects, replacing an entry door ranks among the top-rated remodeling projects to add value to the home.

"The Cost vs. Value report reinforces an important message for homeowners - improving your entry door will likely improve your home's value," said Alcroft. "We are confident the makeovers will increase the value of our winners' homes both from an aesthetic and energy efficiency standpoint."

Remaking History
Built in 1847, Wade and Tara Scharlau's Federal style home has a hollow interior door for a front entry held permanently in place with screws. According to the Scharlau's essay, the first appraiser they hired to determine the value of their home abandoned the job when she saw the door. An entry makeover will not only give their historical home a much needed face-lift, but it will bring the energy efficiency features of this landmark home into the twenty-first century.

An Endearing Entry
In her video entry, Judy Gruszcynski said she's endeared to everything about her home except for her entry. Her home's warped door has peeling brown paint, a door knocker with the former homeowner's name on it and cracks where spiders make their way inside. Judy wishes for a door that reflects her homeowner pride and invites her guests inside.

To see the entries online, visit For more information about Therma-Tru, or to see how a new door might enhance the look of your home, visit

About Therma-Tru
Therma-Tru Doors is the nation's leading manufacturer and most preferred brand of fiberglass and steel exterior door systems. Founded in 1962, Therma-Tru pioneered the fiberglass entry door industry, and today offers a complete portfolio of entry and patio door system solutions, including decorative glass doorlites, sidelites and transoms, and door components. Therma-Tru, headquartered in Maumee, Ohio, is part of leading consumer brands company Fortune Brands Inc. (NYSE: FO). For more information on Therma-Tru Doors, visit or call (800) 537-8827.

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