How to fix or substitute rotting wood on an exterior door


Q: A sliding doorway on my fourth-ground roof deck is rotting at the bottom. Can I switch the rotten wood without replacing the complete door set? If so, how would I go about accomplishing this?

A: Limited of changing the complete piece, you have two alternatives for repairing rotten wood: Use an epoxy consolidator and patch product, or exchange the damaged pieces with new wooden.

For the epoxy option, get a products these types of as Program Three’s EndRot kit ($42.34 at Home Depot). This kit has a several ounces of the products you will need to consolidate spongy wooden and reduce future rot, furthermore two sorts of SculpWood filler: four ounces of a paste wooden filler and 16 ounces of a thicker, putty-like material. If you need to have larger quantities, buy the substances independently.

To fix the base of a doorway, you’d need to have to be ready to function on the base edge, which entails getting rid of the door and environment it on sawhorses or a worktable. Mainly because the door is on the fourth floor, executing the get the job done on the deck would save effort. Tackle the job when no rain is envisioned for numerous times, simply because the wooden have to be dry before you start out. Verify it with a humidity meter, which must show 20 p.c or fewer.

Take away any rotten wood that crumbles from hand tension alone. Then put on gloves, so you don’t get the uncured epoxy on your pores and skin. (With recurring speak to, you could turn into sensitized to it and build a rash or blisters.) Combine the consolidator, which arrives as two liquids (resin and hardener) in the proportion suggested on the label. Stir properly, then brush the substance into the wooden. Use a liberal quantity. If the rot extends nicely into the wood, drill holes and pour in the consolidator to make sure it reaches all the soft fibers. But prepare in advance, since the epoxy stays usable for only about 30 minutes. The consolidator is slim adequate to sink into the wooden and harden it, making a good foundation for filling in the missing wooden.

Replacing an exterior doorway: Experts’ recommendations to do it suitable

With the EndRot package, it is not essential to let the consolidator treatment prior to implementing the SculpWood putty. The paste filler operates for surface area divots, when the putty is thicker and is suitable for changing more substantial sections of missing wood. You can shape it with a putty knife, and when it dries, you can sand it to re-make the unique condition. The putty does not shrink as it dries, so you really do not require to overfill to wind up with flat patches. A coat or two of refreshing paint will make every thing mix in.

The epoxy alternative functions properly when a part of a window frame or typical door is rotten. But a sliding doorway presents a considerably larger problem, for the reason that the bottom edge has rollers that in shape in excess of the observe. Despite the fact that it could be achievable to drill into the fixed putty to develop recesses for the rollers, changing the main portion of rotten wood with a new piece that is by now lower for the recesses possibly can make far more feeling. For this approach, you’d also want a string of dry times, and you’d also begin by taking down the door, so you could perform on it even though it is horizontal. Except you’re a experienced woodworker, you ought to use another person who is. That particular person could determine whether to consider the doorway to a store for the restore or do it on your deck.

Observe how the doorway is built: The vertical body parts operate from the top rated to the base, even though the horizontal sections fit among all those verticals. Cutting all the way across the bottom of the doorway and patching with a single piece would seem weird. As a substitute, you’d will need to meticulously minimize out just the rotten portion of the horizontal piece. (You could probably repair the base edge of the verticals with consolidator and the epoxy putty, because people edges are small.)

The most effective device for slicing out the rotten strip of the horizontal piece is a plunge-cutting circular saw that runs on a observe, which aids preserve the blade perpendicular to the most important surface area of the door. Festool, a German device corporation, popularized this system in the United States a number of decades ago. Nowadays, numerous corporations give track units for other makes of circular saws. Kreg’s Accu-Cut circular saw track, for instance, is $80.60 from Walmart. Begin and close the cut where you won’t nick into the vertical frame parts of the doorway, then use a sharp chisel or an oscillating multi-software to tidy up the ends.

Prior to gluing on a patch piece of wood, slash the recesses for the rollers. A router with a template would do the job very well for this. You might also want to use a biscuit joiner to lower mating slots in the door and the alternative piece, then slip in wafer-like “biscuits” to help align the pieces whilst you glue them with each other.

Except if you plan to do the operate your self, get an estimate for what this type of repair might value, and look at that to the price tag of a new sliding doorway. You most likely would not have to have to exchange the complete door assembly, just the door, until the doorway body is rotted, much too. If you operate into worries finding a proficient woodworker to patch the doorway, know that it’s most likely simpler to locate somebody to change it. Residence facilities and window and doorway organizations are very good areas to start off window-alternative providers give distinctive expert services. A enterprise that specializes in setting up sliding doors might even go to your house to evaluate and try to ascertain the maker.

Regardless of what remedy you select, deal with the drinking water problem that induced the door to rot. If you never modify that, you are going to be confronted with the very same challenge in a couple several years.

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