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Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

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  • Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

    Just recently I looked at two jobs where the front door (exterior side) jams and sills were rotting. On one of the jobs a handyman was hired to make the repairs. It was obvious that all he did was sand the wood, apply some filler and repaint. The homeowner was not satisfied with the results as they can still see the rippling rotten wood. Both of the doors are about 10 years old, fully exposed to the elements and the wood sills were not pitched, allowing water to pool. The jams were rotten from the sash and continued 8” up the jam.

    What have you found that works the best to make these types of repairs? In one case, removing the casing on the interior was not an option.

  • #2
    Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

    The best fix would be replace doors and without that option you might try a product from a marine store called (Get Rot) it soaks into wood and makes it as hard as the wood was to start with. I would have a hard time doing a poor job because the owner will always rember who did it.

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    • #3
      Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

      Can you take a picture so we can see it?

      You could always apply bondo filler or the more expensive structural Wood Epox and sand it properly so there is no waves and then repaint. You could also cut out the sill and put a water return threshold to correct the water pooling situation. You could cut off 8 inches of the jambs, replace with custom milled sections(router, table saw) and then patch in the connection and paint.

      Best thing would be to replace the jamb, sill and casing with all new. What can the budget afford?

      Kirk G

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      • #4
        Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

        http://www.abatron.com/

        I've used their products to restore exterior door jambs that
        were damaged by dog scratches, and subsequently, rotting
        from the elements.

        I use their LiquidWood as a primer. It behaves like a very thin
        epoxy (which I think is exactly what it is), and when applied very liberally with a foam brush, the wood will soak it up. It is a 2-part product, just like epoxy, and smells like it, too.

        They also make a product called Abosolv that is thinner for
        LiquidWood, just in case the LiquidWood is too thick for
        the rotted wood to soak up easily.

        After it cures, I use WoodEpox to rebuild the the rotted wood.
        WoodEpox is also a 2-part product, but parts 1 an 2 have the
        feel of light-weight spackling. I knead the parts together until
        mixed, then press them into place, molding them with my
        fingers. I remember thinking the first time is used it, "this stuff
        is so light-weight and soft that I'll be able to tap it with my
        finger, and it will fall off." And was I ever wrong. It cured hard-
        as-rock and wouldn't budge. I was impressed.

        After the WoodEpox cures, I use a Fein Multitool to sand the
        the WoodEpox back into the orginal shape of the jamb, then
        repaint. It sands beautifully.

        I really like this product, but it's expensive. For me, I can
        justify the price, because I don't use it very often, and it
        has a long shelf life. Look at some of the pictures on their
        website; It's pretty impressive what some people have done
        with their products.

        They also advertise in Fine Homebuilding.

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        • #5
          Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

          Here are the photos of the one job.

          http://www.jlmoldingdesign.com/rot.htm

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

            I've used a lot of the wood consolidator to restore antique sash and sills. I've fixed sash that were so rotted they fell apart when I removed the glass. When finished, they're so strong you can put one corner on the ground and can't rack them if you try. I don't use their filler though, I mix fine sawdust with the wood consolidator and use that. It's water proof and damn near indestructible. The only down side is the fact that it takes at least 24 hours to cure to the point where you can tool it with grinders or sanders.

            On old homes I treat every window sill after stripping the paint, and believe me, after soaking up eight ounces of this stuff they'll never rot again.

            After tooling, the repairs are invisible and permanent.

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            • #7
              Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

              Now that we can see it, it looks like the best way is to remove the small pieces of wood a the bottom of the sidelights and replace them(cheaper than fixing) and use the bondo material on the door stop and properly sand and it will look fine and alse. Also caulk he seams. I still recomemend changing the sill and or adding a drip edge door shoe to the door.

              Kirk

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              • #8
                Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

                There's a great article in the most recent Wood magazine about this and using epoxy glues/waterproof glues.

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                • #9
                  Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

                  I'd sell them a whole new assembly or walk. The door itself has been replaced is way out of character for the house. Nothing you do is ever going to look right there.
                  You will ask what goal the U.S. is pursuing? .... their external debt is huge, and ruining other countries is their customary method. Even ownership of the global 'printing press' is no longer helping. Nor is full control over NATO, None of that if enough for the 21st century colonizers. They don't just need to preserve the dollar as the only global currency but also to get their hands on the economic wealth of other large powers and regions. - Sergei Naryshkin

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

                    I have used a few consolidents with good results. Mostly where historical consideration prevented replacing.

                    I have had the best results by removing all lose , badly rotted wood and paint,then applying a product like liquid wood. A thin 2 part epoxy. That will soak in to the wood cells. I fill any voids with a 2 part epoxy with a filler like saw dust or beter yet dura-bond. much smother. Sand prime and paint. The problem is this is a fix and surounding wood will rot if the problems are not corrected. This is time consuming process and not inexpensive.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

                      I replaced my door a couple of years ago. I had it professionally installed. I noticed that the wood on each side of the door is rotting again. The rot as at the bottom. I believe some of the moisture is reaching my subfloor. I am not prepared to pay for a new door as it cost me over $1,200 last time. so I am going to use the wood epoxy product and repair, especially since i caught it early. However, how do i stop the moisture build up or i am always going to deal with this??? I have attached a picture....

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

                        Originally posted by Erilisi1 View Post
                        I replaced my door a couple of years ago. I had it professionally installed. I noticed that the wood on each side of the door is rotting again. The rot as at the bottom. I believe some of the moisture is reaching my subfloor. I am not prepared to pay for a new door as it cost me over $1,200 last time. so I am going to use the wood epoxy product and repair, especially since i caught it early. However, how do i stop the moisture build up or i am always going to deal with this??? I have attached a picture....
                        Epoxy is NOT going to stop moisture from reaching your subfloor. Unless there was a sill pan installed, you may be out of luck. To install a sill pan you need to (you guessed it) remove & replace the door.

                        BTW - you should have noticed this on your way in...http://forums.jlconline.com/forums/s...ad.php?t=35112
                        Greg

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

                          if you are not going to replace the door pop out what you can, get a multimaster ,sharpen your chisel and remove the rest of the rot .patch with titebond 3 and wood .prime it ,prime again and use lots of paint .any cracks or anything looking like a crack that needs caulk gets it . where i have to or for speed i use multimend [like bondo but not ] . These are those projects I do that look like are not repairable but surprise me and please my clients .
                          All i see is a threshold and some rotted jambs . a disolved threshold and a chance to save someone having to replace two sidelights and probable the door.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

                            I second the use of Abatron products to fix this type of rot, HOWEVER-

                            Both of the situations shown are due to poor design/installation details. You MUST drain the water away, or any installation or repair is doomed to failure. You have to ask yourself, why did these installations fail in the first place, in such a short period of time?

                            Look at what you've got: The sill at the sidelights does not slope properly or extend past the trim that wraps around the bottom beneath the sill. (There is no drip edge). So the water is running right down the crack between the two. Sure, you can calk that crack. But it's never going to be water tight for any length of time. This improper detailing appears to be the same in both situations.

                            gburnet is correct also. You have to wonder about what is going on underneath this mess: Is the subfloor rotting out? Probably.

                            Maybe its time to call a real carpenter.
                            "If you only have a hammer, all problems look like nails"

                            Vintage wood window repair and restoration in Chicago
                            Wood storm windows in Chicago
                            Weatherizing vintage buildings in Chicago

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Best way to fix rotting wood on exterior door ?

                              Harley:

                              Looking at the picture it appears that it has one of those aluminum sills, those things, like most cheap sliding door sills, always leak becasue they put screws through the sill, sometimes you can't see them becasue they are covered by the threshold. Even if there is a sill pan the screws perforate the pan, at best the installers shoot some caulking into the holes before running the screws in, that may work for a few years but as soon as the caulking dries out the water is pouring through.

                              Erilisi1, do you see any screws down there?
                              You will ask what goal the U.S. is pursuing? .... their external debt is huge, and ruining other countries is their customary method. Even ownership of the global 'printing press' is no longer helping. Nor is full control over NATO, None of that if enough for the 21st century colonizers. They don't just need to preserve the dollar as the only global currency but also to get their hands on the economic wealth of other large powers and regions. - Sergei Naryshkin

                              Comment

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