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Old 11-10-2010, 03:38 PM   #1
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Exterior Door Replacement Issues


I need to replace my back door. I would assume that normally the way to go is a pre-Hung door but I'm not sure how well one will work in my situation. The trouble is that the existing threshold is concrete so 1) the rough opening is only 81-1/2 high tops. 2) It has a slight slope.

The existing jamb isn't in terrible shape but it's rotted a bit at the bottom and of coarse has hinge mortises that would have to be redone. Would I be better off trying to repair the jamb just replacing the door?
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Old 11-12-2010, 02:37 PM   #2
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Maybe a picture will inspire a reply



Went to the store and measured a door. It was 81-3/4". Just a little too big. I don't know if most prehung doors are the same size or if it varies with brand/model.

It is probably possible to increase the size of the rough opening. Not sure if it's worth it though. Those cinder blocks you see at the bottom go all the way up so that is the size of the rough-rough opening, you will. I could take out the frame all the way to the block and try to work with that opening.
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Old 11-12-2010, 05:06 PM   #3
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The most common USA door height is six/eight i.e. 6'8".

What is the actual height and width of your door door?

you can order a replacement door through any good lumberyard. They can also order it as a pre-hung. A solid core exterior door in my area is less than $200.

From your pic, I would guess that the bottom edge of your door has never been painted. Very Important, but way too late now
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Old 11-15-2010, 11:32 AM   #4
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Thanks for the reply

Quote:
Originally Posted by PaliBob View Post
The most common USA door height is six/eight i.e. 6'8".

What is the actual height and width of your door door?
The door is 31-7/8 x 79-3/4.
The opening is 32-1/2 x 80-1/8.

Quote:
you can order a replacement door through any good lumberyard.
I suppose this is the way I'll end up going. I wanted to go with a prehung since 1)you don't have to deal with mortising the hinges and lining everything up right. 2) I assumed a modern prehung door would have a better, more reliable seal. 3)The non-optimal condition of the old frame

Quote:
From your pic, I would guess that the bottom edge of your door has never been painted. Very Important, but way too late now.
The door is pretty warped too. The frame should be nice and straight though. The enitre wall is cinder block so I don't think it's going anywhere.
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Old 11-15-2010, 04:28 PM   #5
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Ptron, Congratulations on your decision to DIY, by doing so you will save yourself ≈ $250, at least that's what HD charges to hang a door in La
By using the original door as a model to transfer hinge mortise locations you should have minimal problems, but it is not simple.
I recommend that you first read a copy of a Doorhangers book such as this one by Gary Katz.

When you are finished install a drip edge at the bottom of the door to prevent rain from wicking to the door bottom.
e.g.
http://builderslock.com/pemko-door-b...45-p29847.html
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Old 11-17-2010, 01:31 PM   #6
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Thanks for the tips. One hitch I failed to mention is I want to go with a fiberglass or steel door for insulation purposes. I assume then that I have to make the frame work with the door rather than the other way around.
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Old 11-17-2010, 02:37 PM   #7
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Hi Ptron. Bob had a great suggestion. If you do some research you should be able to find a door shop in your area. They will build a door to fit your existing opening. You can get a fiberglass or steel door with an aluminum threshold that will seal alot better than your existing door. The threshold will get the jambs up away from the concrete, and provide better drainage to prevent the jambs from rotting. When you set the door remember to caulk HEAVILY under the jamb. And to use low expansion foam between the jambs and walls. Let us know how it goes.
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Old 11-17-2010, 08:11 PM   #8
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Hey Ptron I left out talking to the door supplier about getting the proper door sweep for which ever brand of door you get. That will help seal the threshold against weather.
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Old 11-18-2010, 07:57 AM   #9
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If I'm reading this right you have an rough opening of 81-1/2" and the door with jamb your looking at is 81-3/4".. I've used a power plane to plane the top of the jamb down to the right height to get it in.
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Old 11-18-2010, 01:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RTRCon View Post
If I'm reading this right you have an rough opening of 81-1/2" and the door with jamb your looking at is 81-3/4".. I've used a power plane to plane the top of the jamb down to the right height to get it in.
Thanks for all the help. They originally plastered right up to the edge of the frame so it looked like that's all the bigger the rough opening was and so that's where those numbers came from. I decided to take off the exterior trim this morning to see whats what. Turns out the opening in the concrete block is several inches wider and much higher so I can pretty much frame it out however I need to. Kind of confusing to describe so I'll post a couple pictures when I get a chance.
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Old 11-20-2010, 01:56 PM   #11
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Here's a couple pictures that show what the opening is like.










And here's a picture that shows the threshold. You can se what I mean about it being plastered right up to the frame.



Do you think I'll run anto any problems with the way the new threshold sits on top of the old one? It has a slight slope to the outside and isn't perfectly even where it meets the floor. What about getting a prehung door without a built in threshold?

It may already be too late to do this before winter. It's 35 today. I'm worried that it would be too cold for the caulk and foam. I might just have to put up a storm door to get me through the winter.
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Old 11-22-2010, 10:27 PM   #12
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hi Ptron,
you don't want to get a pre-hung door without a threshold. trying to make that work with the existing threshold would be extremely difficult. If your shy about removing the existing threshold, don't be. you just need to take the existing threshold down flush with the floor. you can make several cuts across it with the saw and then chisel it down flat. If it just pops out easily, then by all means take it out. if the existing interior floor is concrete, then fill the gap with a lightweight concrete patch. if the existing floor is wood, then fill it with a piece of pressure treated 2x4 ripped to fit and screw it in with a good adhesive. If you don't want to tackle removing the threshold, you will need to get a blank door and dado for the hinges yourself. but to get a good weather tight seal, you need a new threshold. If I have confused you or you have any other questions, feel free to holler at me. PS if you get a 50 degree day, that will be warm enough for caulking and the expansion foam.
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Old 11-29-2010, 01:15 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccnvchris View Post
hi Ptron,
you don't want to get a pre-hung door without a threshold. trying to make that work with the existing threshold would be extremely difficult. If your shy about removing the existing threshold, don't be. you just need to take the existing threshold down flush with the floor. you can make several cuts across it with the saw and then chisel it down flat. If it just pops out easily, then by all means take it out. if the existing interior floor is concrete, then fill the gap with a lightweight concrete patch. if the existing floor is wood, then fill it with a piece of pressure treated 2x4 ripped to fit and screw it in with a good adhesive. If you don't want to tackle removing the threshold, you will need to get a blank door and dado for the hinges yourself. but to get a good weather tight seal, you need a new threshold. If I have confused you or you have any other questions, feel free to holler at me. PS if you get a 50 degree day, that will be warm enough for caulking and the expansion foam.
I'm probably misusing terminology. When was refering to the existing threshold, I meant the concrete step part. It is that which has a slight slope to the outside and is an 1/8 to 1/4" higher than the floor where they meet. I intended to remove the wood peice. Excellent info nontheless, thanks. I'll can the threshold-less prehung door idea. Unfortunately we likely won't see a 50 degree day around here again until spring
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Old 11-29-2010, 04:21 PM   #14
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Rough openings for doors are generally 2" wider and 2" higher than the door itself (not counting the frame). If you had to, you could use a sawzall to cut 1/2" off the header. Purchase the whole unit, not just the slab, and make sure you get an adjustable sill that is made of something rot proof. As someone already said, set the door for a dry run to make sure it fits, then take it out and caulk the daylights where the sill will sit. Center the frame in the opening, shim it in place and use a long level while adjusting the shims to get the hinge side plumb and straight. I use galv or ceramic coated screws to attach the frame and make sure I have shims where I'm screwing. Once the hinge side is secure, you can adjust the frame to fit the door so the gap between the door edges and the frame are even and non-binding. Just use 3 or 4 screws on each side and don't put any in the head or the sill of the frame. When it's all set, you can nail or screw the exterior casing and then insulate with minimal expanding foam (wear gloves and goggles!) and install the interior casing
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Old 05-21-2011, 04:15 PM   #15
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Now that the weather is a little more agreeable time to get back at this. The subfloor was delaminating underneath the old threashold so I pulled it. Seems to me the steps at this point are to replace the subfloor, Patch the holes in the concrete where the old frame went down into it, frame in a new rough opening, put in the door. I have a few questions I hope someone can help me with.

Patching the holes – I have a bag of fast setting patching cement. This reasonable stuff to use for this purpose?


Framing in new rough openening – Should I use treated lumber?


Putting in new subfloor – If I just put in a 3/4ply subfloor, it will be about 1/16" to 1/8" lower than the edge of the concrete step (the the concrete isn't perfectly even across). Since the concrete slopes away from the house, this creates a high point that the new threshold will sit on. Should I put a layer of something over or under the subloor to make it more closely match? Shoud I use my hammer drill and chisel attachment to knock the concrete down a teeny bit to match, hopefully also creating a litte more flat surface area the new threshold can contact? Or should I just put it in and shim as necassary?


Here are a couple pictures to illustrate what I'm talking about. You can see that I cut out the bottom of the old jamb so I could see exactly what awaited me underneath.



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