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RosenKen 06-04-2009 06:21 PM

Exterior wood door frame on concrete floor
Hey all, I live in a garden condo in Chicago and am starting a front door replacement project. It's a builder grade wood door and it's warped over the years and doesn't shut correctly. I've purchased a prehung steel door to go in its place. The old door is a very odd size 39W. Height is 84". I have bought a standard size 36x80 door to go in its place. I've torn out the drywall around the door opening and they used about an inch of wood to frame it between bricks on the bottom half and about 4" of wood on the top half (brick opening is wider up there at ground level).

The old frame is floating above the floor. Is that normal for a concrete floor? I want to attach my new frame to the floor so it's sturdier. So far I know I want treated lumber and I'm pretty sure I need to put something between the wood and the concrete so we don't get any rot down the road. Do you guys normally use like a metal fencing bracket where you nail that into the concrete then nail the door frame into the bracket?

Also, I'm not gonna have enough room for a normal king stud/jack stud frame since the bricks are too narrow, at least on the bottom. I feel with the extra 3" I gain with the narrow door it'll be much better than the old door frame.

Any other tips/tricks are appreciated. I'm a home improvement novice but am very meticulous. If this were a normal front door on a normal house this project would have been done already :)

Ron6519 06-05-2009 06:33 AM

I can't visualize what you have. Post some photos.

RosenKen 06-05-2009 09:40 AM

I am on the road now so I cant post pictures til next week. The brick opening I have is like a light bulb shape (squared off obviously). Narrower on the bottom half of the door and about 5-6" wider up top. It juts out right at ground level. The bottom part of the frame that's in there now has only about 1" of wood and is very flimsy. The hinge screws are screwed through the frame and into the brick and they don't stay tight for long. The top is much more normal size. I'm more worried about the bottom of the frame than the top.

Since I'm putting in a narrower door I'd have about 1 1/2" more width on each side to play with so i could at least put a 2x6 in thereon each side. I'd have about 2" of room between the bricks and the pre-hung door frame (that's figuring 1/2" on each side for shims).

The frame is not structural. The other part I'm wondering about is that there is about 1-2" of space between the bottom of the existing door frame and the concrete floor slab. I'm sure they did this so it wouldn't rot from wicking up moisture but I'm wondering is there a way to attach the new door frame to the concrete (for strength) and still have it protected from wicking (I was thinking treated lumber and a bracket between the wood and concrete).

Thanks for bearing with me and I'll try to get my wife to upload some pictures to me.

clasact 06-05-2009 02:23 PM

As far as the bottem of the door to the concret p/t is good and a wrap of tar paper would work then drill into the concret and epoy a couple lag bolts in that ought to make it secure.Addind 2x6 on the sides if they fit and attaching them in the fram will make it real sturdy and leave room for trim inside and out .That is if I am reading this right

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