How much door warp is acceptable? What can be done?

Discussion in 'Windows and Doors' started by parkerea, Jun 8, 2011.

  1. Jun 8, 2011 #1

    parkerea

    parkerea

    parkerea

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    I just had a solid oak entry door installed. It is noticably warped, bowed so the latch side stile pulls away from the jamb stop and weather stripping at the top and bottom. It is a beautiful, expensive door.

    I suspect the only solution is to replace the door, since I doubt a 1-3/4" slab of oak can be straightened, and I doubt it will unwarp on its own. I live in Los Angeles, so it is not like we have extremes of humidity that would temporarily affect the door.

    I have 2 questions before I push the retailer/installer:
    1) My question is how much warp is acceptable in a new door?
    2) Any thoughts on whether this can be fixed in any way?


    Thank you in advance,
    parkerea
     
  2. Jun 8, 2011 #2
    Touchy subject. What do YOU think is acceptable for the amount you paid for the door? When buying a door, I expect it to be flat. When I am building a fence, I accept that there may be a few warped/twisted boards.
     
  3. Jun 9, 2011 #3

    parkerea

    parkerea

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    I realize nothing is perfectly flat. The bow is about 3/16 -- almost a quarter inch -- maybe a tad more. I was hoping someone with door installation experience might have some thougths.


    Thanks again,
    parkerea
     
  4. Jun 9, 2011 #4
    When you close the door, do you have to push hard to get it to latch?
     
  5. Jun 10, 2011 #5

    nealtw

    nealtw

    nealtw

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    Was the door sealed on all six sides, perhaps the humidity is inside the house?
     
  6. Jun 10, 2011 #6

    parkerea

    parkerea

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    Quite the opposite. The latch side stile barely compresses the weather stripping, and since it is bowed inwards, the top and bottom don't contact the weather stripping, so it takes a neglible force to latch the door.

    The door has a factory finish on at least 5 sides; I can't see the bottom well. I don't know how much of a "seal" the factory finish provides. My house is not humid, and there is no source of humidity (the front bath is hardly used). Also, if inside humidity were the issue, I suspect the bow would be outward as the inside surface of the door swells.

    I measured the bow carefully (pulled a thread tight from top to bottom, measured with a dial caliper) and as close as I can tell (within a few thousandths) it is exactly 1/4". Coincidentally, the factory warranty on a 6'8" door covers warp exceeding 1/4", which it technically does not. If it gets worse, they should replace it. If it gets better, I will be happier. (OK, my wife will less irritated and that would make me happier.) The installer said he checked some other manufacturers and his research showed 1/4" is typical of other factory warranties also.

    The installer came out again today to fix some issues, and will return tomorrow to adjust the strike plate or something to make the door fit tighter.

    Thank you all for your input. I'll let you know how it works out.


    Thanks again,
    parkerea
     
  7. Jun 10, 2011 #7

    nealtw

    nealtw

    nealtw

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    Did know they would have a limit on the warrenty, learn something every day. You can be sure they try very hard to limit this problem as warped boards are impossible to machine and if they warped after machining they wouldn't be able to assemble it.
     
  8. Jun 11, 2011 #8

    TheDoorGuy

    TheDoorGuy

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    Hi there,
    As you found out, most manufacturers state that 1/4" is within tolerances and is
    not considered a defect. If you push hard enough and become enough of an irritant
    you might get a new door out of the deal. Installation of the new door is another matter. Getting any money at all for labor or other parts is next to impossible in
    my experience.

    Couple of questions:
    Was this a prehung door or was it installed on the existing door jambs?
    What type of weatherstripping do you have?...kerf style or aluminum stop applied?

    A picture or two might help.
    RC/DG
     
  9. Jun 11, 2011 #9

    parkerea

    parkerea

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    The warranty is good for a year. On Friday I officially accepted the door after the installer made some adjustments (moved the strike plate to tighten the door against the weather stripping), so as long as it does not get worse I am OK with it, though it is not ideal.

    I noticed that the 1-3/4" stiles are actually two 7/8" boards laminated together, presumably with opposing grain, so yes, they do take care to avoid warpage.

    It was prehung with kerf weatherstripping. With the strike plate adjustment, the door is slightly too tight against the weatherstripping IMHO, but I suspect the weatherstripping will compress somewhat over time, so that is probably OK.

    I attached a photo of the warp. The black thread is pulled tight from top to bottom of the lock side stile's inside face.


    Once again, thank you all.
    - parkerea

    parkerea door - SAM_1563.jpg
     
  10. Jun 12, 2011 #10

    TheDoorGuy

    TheDoorGuy

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    Well, it is always better if the door warps the other way because you
    can pull it in a bit with the latch and maybe keep it from getting worse.
    There really isn't a way of knowing if your door warp will get worse or, for
    that matter, better over time.

    That being said, the Qlon kerf weatherstrip does come in different thickess
    or reach configuration. You could use the thinner one by the latch area
    and then cut in a thicker piece above and below to help take up the space.
    Here is catalog link:
    Columbia Catalog 2010

    Your existing weatherstripping will probably relax a bit over time and be
    easier to open if that is a concern.

    I hate to show my caliper ignorance too much, but is that 40/100" in the
    picture?...If so that would be more like 3/8" and not in the so called
    "acceptable" warp range. Maybe you have a case!?

    RC/DG
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2011
  11. Jun 13, 2011 #11

    parkerea

    parkerea

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    That is great news about different thickness of weatherstrip. I will follow up with them.

    No, it is actually 241/100". Old dial calipers are read in 2 parts and summed (see attached photo for those interested in "dial caliper 101"):
    1. The coarse reading down to 1/10, which in this case is 0.200", plus
    2. The fine reading down to 1/1000, which in this case is about 0.041


    Thanks yet again,
    parkerea

    Dial caliper - SAM_1563.jpg
     
  12. Jun 14, 2011 #12

    TheDoorGuy

    TheDoorGuy

    TheDoorGuy

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    Thanks for the interesting caliper tidbit, Mr.Parker!!
    I would not have figured that one out!
    RC/DG
     
  13. Jun 14, 2011 #13

    parkerea

    parkerea

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    Are you kidding? Small price to pay for the Qlon weatherstrip info! Now, if you want to know how to read a vernier caliper, a skill that is as current as using a slide rule or an abacus, and since the vernier caliper dates back to the 17th century it is nearly as old as the slide rule, just let me know. ;)


    Thanks one more time,
    parkerea
     

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