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Old 02-22-2012, 09:22 AM  
maxpatch
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Default Interior door problem.

Because of settling issues, many of my interior doors do not close perfectly as when they were new. They are not "square" is the best way to put it. The difference between the door and the frame is different from the top and the bottom.

I need to replace some doors but that will not fix the problem. Is it possible to replace the entire door assembly to fix this problem, or it that too expensive a solution? Is this something I need to live with?



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Old 02-22-2012, 09:35 AM  
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Before you just start ripping stuff out and installing new, are you sure the settling has stopped? What is the cause of the settling? What type of foundation, floor joist system, framing do you have? How old is your dwelling? Has the structure been altered in any way?



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Old 03-11-2012, 09:49 AM  
joecaption
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Most sticking doors are a simple fix.
Each door wil be a case by case fix.
Removing one of the hindge screws and replacing the short screw with a 3" long one into a predrill hole can raise or lower a door depending on if you add the screw in the top or bottom hindge.
If it's an old house sometimes there's just so much paint on the wood it will cause it to stick.
Just look where the paints being scraped off from opening and closing the door and sand until it closes correctly. Then prim and paint the area.
Has anyone ever gone under the house to check out why there's so much settling?

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Old 10-10-2012, 11:23 AM  
Ron6519
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maxpatch View Post
Because of settling issues, many of my interior doors do not close perfectly as when they were new. They are not "square" is the best way to put it. The difference between the door and the frame is different from the top and the bottom.

I need to replace some doors but that will not fix the problem. Is it possible to replace the entire door assembly to fix this problem, or it that too expensive a solution? Is this something I need to live with?
The least expensive solution will be to use the doors you have. Depending how misaligned the door is will dictate the solution.
Slight rubbing could just mean a little sanding or trimming and a strike plate enlargement with a file.
Major rubbing or the door hitting the frame would require resetting the door in it's frame, getting it back plumb and square.
Another issue with doors in older houses is paint build up on the door and the frame, especially the door stop. The paint buildup keeps the door from closing peoperly because the clearances once there have been taken up by one layer of paint over the other.
All the issues should be addressed.
Ron
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Old 10-10-2012, 01:30 PM  
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I guess for door openings in the shape of a parallelogram you could add wedge shaped wood pieces to the top and bottom of the (painted) door.

Door openings can probably get pretty far out of square before anyone notices, if it weren't for the door being closed and revealing the gaps.

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Old 10-10-2012, 04:19 PM  
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Or just pull the trim and frame and re-set it where you want it.

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Old 10-17-2012, 09:30 AM  
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If the doors are closing in the out of square casings, and casings are secure to framesyou should be able to get doors to line up them easily.

If the gap at one end of non hinged side is too great you want to move hinge in that direction. Remove hinge from door and casing. Cut shims from cardboard (Match box thickness or "shirt cardboard") to fit in hinge mortise, one on door side one on frame side. If it needs more add more shimming, always in pairs equal amount to door and casng.

If gap too narrow you will need to deepen mortises. Buy yourself a utility knife and good quality 1/2" chisel and a sharpening stone. Deepen mortise in door and casing a little bit at a time, equal amts both sides. Joe's longer screws, or plugging old screw holes and remounting hinge, may solve this problem if hinges are just loose and not in mortises all the way.

You may have to use combination of shims and chiseling, one or other at top or bottom. Doing either or both may raise or lower latch side of door. You may have to raise or lower strike plate. You may have to move plate in or out. There are adjustable plates if there is room for one, or if you cut big enough mortise to hold entire thing flush. they are usually a bit thicker.

If door sticks or rubs casing after shimming it is easier to reshape door than move casing. Use a block plane or 80 grit sand paper and sanding block on door. Observe that door edge is not square to face of door, it slants, side of door opposite hinge pins is narrower, keep the same slant. Plane and sand to get even gap, touch up with finer grades of sand paper. Paint. Don't forget a door has 6 sides, don't forget to seal top and bottom of door to prevent swelling and sticking.
It wouldn't hurt to paint thin coat in mortises and handle/latch holes. A thin coat, you don't want to shim out mortises with paint after you went to all the trouble of making them right.

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Old 10-23-2012, 12:42 PM  
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I say, remodel the entire frame and create the exact measurement that is compatible to your new door.

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Old 10-23-2012, 06:56 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maxpatch View Post
Because of settling issues, many of my interior doors do not close perfectly as when they were new. They are not "square" is the best way to put it. The difference between the door and the frame is different from the top and the bottom.

I need to replace some doors but that will not fix the problem. Is it possible to replace the entire door assembly to fix this problem, or it that too expensive a solution? Is this something I need to live with?
I'm not sure we answered your questions clear enough.
The easiest is to hang a pre hung door. You can save your old trim if you cut the paint on both sides and pry it off with a flat bar. Don't knock the nails back just pull them thru the wood. The doors that are out of level will have to be adjusted. Check the floor from one side to the other and see just how much it is out. Cut that much off the bottom of the frame for the high side.
If you have adjusted the frame right when you set it in the hole the top will be level. Set the door and frame tight against the hinge side and put shims between the rough framing and your frame above each side. This will hold it in place while you work on it. The top should be level. Nail the hinge side with a nail near each hinge. Check that the hinge side is plumb and the gap between the door and the frame is equal top to bottom. Correct to plumb and gaps with shims. Balance the shims by put them in from both sides. In the same way adjust the gap on the knob side of the door and nail in place.
I would do the same proccess with old doors that are out of square, after removing trim cut the nails that hold the frame in place with a sawsall or a hacksaw blade.
You may have to cut some off the bottom of the door and sometime that cut wants to match the angle of the floor.
Remmember to sand the edges of the trim before re-installing.
Before buying new pre-hung doors check the height of the door knob.
If your doors or old the may not be at a standard height and you may have to special order the cut, this should not cost any more.
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Old 10-24-2012, 09:44 AM  
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It is needless expense and labor to replace a door that can be repaired by planing or with cost of matchbook cover. If house is still shifting, and most move through out their existence, rehanging doors will be ongoing chore. As long as frame is secure it is easier to adjust door than frame. Doors that swing shut or open can also be fixed by adjusting hinges. If adjusting leads to latch misalignment, longer strike plate for a dollar or two is cheaper than rehanging.

If, as you say, max, you want to replace some doors any way, pre-hung is best way. Latch height on pre-hung is no concern unless you want to match some non standard knob height in other doors, or non standard size of door.. A special order non standard door will cost a few bucks more, not much but mass producing factory its not pre-set for them. If knob height is non-standard buy un-drilled doors and a knob installation kit with jigs that have proper set back for knob, centering jigs for bolts and to hold bits perpendicular.

It is best to have more shimming on hinge side of casing than latch. That is sie that must be securely fastened plumb side to side and front to back. Put two shims one from front one from back, as neal sed, thin end to thin end and slide together so they are square to frame. Put shims immediatly above and below or directly behind hinges. I prefer mounting the casing with trim head screws, making sure they won't interfere with hinge screws. No nail or screw should go thru casing unless there is shim behind it. I replace at least one hinge screw with one long enough to reach frame. Shim above and below or behind strike and lock plate. Lock plate screws should reach frame.

For light weight interior and closet doors many builders install prehung doors with pre-installed trim on hinge pin side. Its not my preferred method, but I've done lots when I was running contract trim crew, even in high end homes. There is no real shimming involved, requires a fairly standard frame opening, fairly plumb walls at least on pin side, usually done before finish flooring. Very easy and quick, especially with casing nail gun and two installers.
Slide the door/casing unit into opening, untill trim is against wall, plump outer edge of hinge side trim, raise hinge or latch side of casing until top trim is level, face nail thru trim into studs with 3" casing nails. Sometimes some tapping from non trimmed side to correct for out of plumb walls. Blocking instead of shims behind casing in extreme case and behind hinges if needed to use longer screw into frame.. Fasten trim to casing and studs on other side. Thats it.
Note that this requires a close fitting, square, and plumb opening. One side of casing may have gap under it. In new construction gap was usually covered by flooring.

The builders I was working for had a 1/4" caulking tolerance even in "luxury" homes. I could barely tolerate their attitude, but if I bid to do it right way, I didn't get job. I eventually gave it up.



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[CENTER][FONT=Comic Sans MS]If you hook your thumb over your belt you won't hit it with the hammer or leave it layin on the saw table.[/FONT][/CENTER]

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