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Old 12-05-2011, 12:07 PM   #1
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Door No Longer Fits After Carpet Install

Hi everyone

We just installed carpeting in a nursery, and it turns out the door no longer fits. I figure I need to take about a quarter of an inch to half and inch off the bottom of the door so that it once again aligns with the hinges and can open and close properly.

The carpet company won't do anything about it. I also took the door to a big box retailer that has a company policy against shaving down doors.

What's the easiest way to get this done? It's a hollow-core interior door. Can I shave that much off with a hand planer? Thanks in advance for your help.


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Old 12-05-2011, 12:32 PM   #2
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I've used a circular saw with a new blade and had great results. A guide will help you, but I did it freehand along a tape line without any problems. Make sure you cut off the correct end!


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Old 12-05-2011, 12:54 PM   #3
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Get some clamps and clamp a 2x4 to the door that is level to the bottom of the door. Adjust the 2x4 to contact the fence on your circular saw for the right cut depth.

Tape off the door as mentioned.

Use a sharp blade.

You may cut through the bottom chord of the hollow door and need to glue in a filler piece when you are done so leave the door and the clamps in place if you need to re-trim the filler piece.
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Old 12-05-2011, 03:06 PM   #4
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+1 to the above suggestions. For only a quarter to half inch, you should be fine unless the door was trimmed previously... If you don't have the tools or desire to diy you could call a handyman, but you'll probably pay out the nose for something so small.
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Old 12-05-2011, 06:10 PM   #5
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Tips for undercutting wood doors:

1. Unless you are exceptionally skilled with a circular saw, use a clamped guide, as mentioned in previous posts, to keep the saw straight during the cut.
2. Use a sharp saw blade - preferably carbide.
3. Mark the cut line to provide 1/2" to 3/4" of door clearance over the carpet.
4. At 1/16" above the intended cut line, scribe a 1/16" deep cut with a sharp utility knife or box blade. Repeat on both sides of the door.
5. Set the circular saw blade depth to 1/8" deeper than the door thickness
6. Make the cut slow and evenly paced

Step #3 - Remember that this undercut is usually the return air path for the HVAC system which requires some clearance for free airflow.
Step #4 - This step will prevent the saw blade from splintering the wood veneer. Actually it does splinter but for only 1/16" until it meets the scribed cut.
After cutting the door, block sand the bottom edges of the door to a 45 bevel 1/16" wide. This prevents stuff caught under the door (like socks, clothes, toes, etc.) from splintering the veneer in the future. If the bevel is kept to 1/16", it can't be seen from eye height.

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