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Large Door Warping

Q: I have an 8 ft x 3 ft Mahogany door that I am replacing. As you may have guessed this door seal gets compromised every time the weather changes. How can I fix this?

I. Valdus, Farmington, NM

A: If you are handy and committed to keeping the original door, you could insert a truss rod and adjust it every time it warps one way or the other.

B. Dunat, Bellingham, WA

Update: I really do not want to spend a lot of time re-visiting this issue to adjust this door. My client loses confidence in me if my door fails to seal properly. I need to fix this door once and for all.

I. Valdus, Farmington, NM

 Update: Then you will have to look into a (probably more) expensive solution in replacing the solid door with a wood composite door, like doors from singcore.com that come with a 50 year guarantee.

B. Dunat, Bellingham, WA

Large Sliding Door: Excellent solution. Please contact us, I Valdus. We are authorized to provide you with the Large Sliding Door solution with a mahogany wood door that will not warp, bend or twist, guaranteed for 50 years!

Large Sliding Door

Custom Door Warped

Q: Hi, I’ve installed a custom 9 foot tall Cypress wood door in an upscale home. The owner was very specific about desiring a 6-panel wood door. Very beautiful and the customer was very happy when installed. Now, I cannot keep the door straight due to bowing and twisting and cannot latch or secure the door. Help!

J. Hendricks, River Falls, WI

A: If it is that important for the customer to keep that particular door, you could alter the frame or wall to fit the door but this cause continued expensive maintenance as it is likely that at the next season to wood may bend in a different direction.

S. Dean, Spring, TX

Large Sliding Door: Or you could replace the door altogether with an exact duplicate wood door from us, that can be guaranteed for no bowing, no cupping for 50 years. We routinely manufacture replacement doors (especially large exterior doors) that are problematic for remaining straight that have the exact same appearance as the original door.

Large Sliding Door

How to Fix a Warped Door

Q: I have a large Sepele door that has sentimental value. It is an interior door 8′ 3″ tall upstairs in the house (actually, this house was designed around the doors, so replacing is not on the designer’s radar). I don’t mind the service calls because I get paid for maintenance calls. How do you fix a warped door?

G. Ward, Sacramento, CA

A1: You can use a plum line to establish which side is cupping. Sand down the highest points, turn over and weigh-down the high areas. Over time (a few days) the door will move in the direction of the weight. Re-test the door for straightness. When straight, re-finish and re-install.

T. Henderson, Salem, OH

A2: You could attach truss rods to the side that warps to create tension to counterbalance the wood’s tendency to warp in the opposite direction. Using an adjustable truss rod will allow you to make minor adjustments without having to dismantle the door.

D. Williamson, Cedar Rapids, IA

A3: If you are making repeated trips to fix a warped door – and it is warping in the same spot/direction every time, consider altering the wall or jamb to accommodate the warpage, if it is consistent. It might be less costly to make the structure fit the door, than the door fit the structure.

L. Harris, Charlotte, NC

A4: If your door warps across the middle, you can rip out the stiles and replace them. At this point you might like to drop in some stainless (or other material) reinforcements before you seal it up for added strength.

F. Martin, Saginaw, AL

A5: Fuh-get about it. There ain’t no way to straighten a warped door. You’re screwed. Get a new door. There, it’s fixed. I’m just sayin’… Now, go home, eat a hot-dog, drink a beer and call me in the morning to pay your bill.

N. Cohen, Rochester, NY

Large Sliding Door: Thank about proposing a exact duplicate of the original door that will be guaranteed not to warp for 50 years, regardless of size or wood species. We specialize in this service for high-end designers, architects and commercial clients all over the world.

Large Sliding Door

All Wood Doors Warp

Q: It is a well-known fact; that wood doors warping is the bane of the premium millworks business. It’s what wood doors do. Even when taking extra steps in building doors, like implanting steel stiles and rails (which introduces other problems) we just cannot solve this scourge. Any ideas?

P. Madsen, Syracuse, NY

A: Stop using wood doors. Wood moves. Even laminated wood moves. If you use wood, it will warp and require door repair. No way around it. Steel doors are the only doors that are straight.

R. Allen, Chicago, IL

Update: We have used steel doors because we were told that they were high-performance. What we found was, that over time, these doors would fail due to extra weight causing stress on both the hardware and the structure. Plus, they did not have tolerances that would be considered high-performance due to welding.

D. Morris, Fairfield, NJ

Update: Fiberglass doors tend to warp also, but much less than wood and are more forgiving, reducing maintenance costs over the life of the door. Think about using fiberglass (which performs well when exposed to the weather also) instead of wood.

S. Shaw, Grand Rapids, MI

Large Sliding Door: We manufacture Eco-friendly doors that can be guaranteed perfectly flat and to stay flat for 50 years. We make our doors out of any flat building material, like wood, aluminum, concrete, ceramic, fiberglass (FRP), LVL, mag board, stainless steel, etc… You name it. If you can dream of it, we can build it to look like you want it to and have it perform better than you ever thought it could. Plus all of our doors are lightweight and high-strength (stronger than steel pound-for-pound).

Large Sliding Door

How Do You Build a Non-warping Wood Door?

Q: You claim to be able to build a door that will not warp, bend or twist (pretty much forever)… How in the heck do you expect me to believe that, when there’s pretty much been no such thing since the beginning of time. How do you build a non-warping door that can supposedly be guaranteed for 50 years?

T. Madding, Washington, DC

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