Door frame water logged/expanded - how to repair? (indoor)

Discussion in 'Carpentry and Woodworking' started by rob350, Feb 3, 2014.

  1. Feb 3, 2014 #1

    rob350

    rob350

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    The (clean water) toilet tank had leaked on the foreclosure house I bought. This caused the bottom of the door frame to take in water and expand.

    Thoughts on how to repair this?
    Remove the expanded part, put a small piece of wood as filler and putty the rest?

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  2. Feb 3, 2014 #2

    nealtw

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    You can try, but that is just an mdf like product. I would be better to rip it out and replace it.
     
  3. Feb 3, 2014 #3

    havasu

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    As neal said, there is no repair for that. Ripping it out and replacing will be your only option.
     
  4. Feb 3, 2014 #4

    nealtw

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    never say never but I think replacing it will be easier in the long run
     
  5. Feb 3, 2014 #5

    havasu

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    I had this same problem at my vacation home recently. I tried using a plainer, a sawzall, sanding, and nothing worked for me.
     
  6. Feb 4, 2014 #6

    rob350

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    Alright will probably change it out. I'm assuming I could pick up a door frame from home Depot for $50-100.
    How hard to change it out?
    Do they come a standard door hight size or will I need to cut it shorter?
    Just peel the trim off and pull a few nails out and it will come off?
     
  7. Feb 4, 2014 #7

    nealtw

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    Yours dosn't look like anything standard, can you take a few more photos so we can get a better look at what you have. It looks more like something someone just made up as they went along.
     
  8. Feb 4, 2014 #8

    rob350

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    I'm out of town currently, will grab pics this weekend.
    House was built in 07
     
  9. Feb 4, 2014 #9

    bud16415

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    I like your original idea of cutting out the bad section and patching it up. I would take a putty knife and work it under the door stop to break the paint seal and then pry it off being careful not to break it. Then do the same with the door trim and remove that. The door stop is away from the floor as there was a threshold strip across there filling in the gap that has the plastic tape on it now. You can buy a new one of these at the builder center. I would then mark a line high enough to get above the damage and saw cut as far I could get across the bad part and finish off the cut with a chisel. Patch in a piece and I like to use automotive “bondo” in the cracks and sand out just like I was patching a car body. Paint and replace trim.

    If you start prying off that old door jamb with my luck I would end up hanging a new door by the time I was done. If everything else looks good enough just fix the bad spot IMO.

    If it doesn’t work you can always go to plan B. you will just be out a little time.
     
  10. Feb 4, 2014 #10

    nealtw

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    Bud; thats a $4. peice of mdf.
     
  11. Feb 4, 2014 #11

    bud16415

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    Oh I thought it was the door jamb of a pre-hung interior door that had been shimmed and all that, with the hinges and lock set etc. If it’s just a strip of MDF then I agree just replace it.
     
  12. Feb 4, 2014 #12

    nealtw

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    Well it might be. In spec houses they install all kinds of junk and call it prehung door frame. To me it looks like a 1x5 mdf with a shoe molding for a door stop
    . but it looks strange when you look at what didn't swell up. I would lean toward having a new frame built for the door but if the rest of the house has this and he wants them to match ??
     
  13. Feb 4, 2014 #13

    JoeD

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    No way I would try to patch that. It will look like a patch no matter how you do it. It's just a cheap piece of MDF. Must have been a really really cheap prehung door to have a frame made out of that junk. It's not even good MDF. I have MDF get wet and not go bad like that. Almost looks like cardboard paneling stuff we used to call beaver board.
    Buy a new prehung door or build a new frame for the existing door out of real wood.
     
  14. Feb 10, 2014 #14

    rob350

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    Took a look this weekend, the door hinges are attached to that same peice of mdf for those wondering.

    07 was the peak of "how fast can we build a house" in Alberta, so I don't doubt they cheaped out on the doors.
     
  15. Feb 10, 2014 #15

    CallMeVilla

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    Truth is, the patch will always show. Even if this is a flip, it will not look right. For all the time and trouble, you may as well rip out the entire piece of MDF and replace it.

    This does not look like it is on the hinge side, so it is a simple pry and replace. If the hinge side is exploded too (MDF and water do not get along) then rip out the entire frame. For a weekend warrior, it might even be better to rip out the entire door, get a pre-hung replacement, and put it in ... The time spent trying to patch might produce an inferior outcome.
     
  16. Feb 10, 2014 #16

    bud16415

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    That’s what I thought you had there. No one can know what your plans are for the place. Sounds like you got a good deal on it. You have lots of good advice here I think the two options I would look at would be buy a whole new pre hung door and do a patch on the part that’s bad. Chances are if you swap doors the new one will look different if that’s a problem change them all. Are you trying to make a show place or just fix it up and flip it? I know Chip Foose could patch the bottom and make it look like new, and I’m pretty sure I could also. It’s just a patch up if you are just trying to get going on a budget patch it and replace when you get ready to do more major work.

    I have a fancy oak newel post and banister leading to the upstairs of our new house that the previous owners cats used as a clawing post and another cat would sit on top of the newel cap and claw at the banister. The gouges on the handrail were a good 3/16 deep. Its 100 years old and handmade and the question was replace or repair? I thought I would give the repair a try. I mixed oak floor filler with stain and matched the wood color and spread it on. Sanded it out to shape and went just a little undersize so that some of the higher old wood surfaced a little bit of faux graining and some stain over everything and then varnish and it doesn’t look new but it looks nice and looks like something 100 years old and well maintained. If I was just planning on painting it I would have used Bondo and it would have been a fairly simple fix. Was a lot cheaper than a new stairway and I’m all about cheaper.
     
  17. Feb 10, 2014 #17

    nealtw

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    then it's likely some cheap pre-hung, if the rest of the house is the same you wil want to match it. Take you photo to a Windser Plywood or Home Hardwear and see if they know how made it. Or if some one can duplicate it with wood.
    And no there hasn't been any bargains in Alberta.
     
  18. Jun 9, 2014 #18

    Cienna

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    Have same problem. Would like to hire a contractor to come fix. Who does this kind of work? What should I look for in the phone directory? Does Home depot come out to home to replace the door frame and baseboard that was damaged from water logged?
    Let me know thru here. A Senior on fixed income.
     
  19. Jun 9, 2014 #19

    nealtw

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    Welcome to the site. HD will likely do that for you. How bad of flood did you have and has that been dried out properly?
     
  20. Jun 10, 2014 #20

    CallMeVilla

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    Rule One: Once MDF explodes with moisture, there is no "fixing" it. Tear out and replace.

    Rule Two: Chances are sectioning the MDF will leave a line, no matter how hard you try to blend it. Therefore, the best bet is to replace the entire piece.

    Rule Three: Neal is almost always right. Diane Neal, of course

    diane-neal.jpg
     
    nealtw and inspectorD like this.

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