How to Repair an Exterior Door

All doors, both exterior and interior, are essential for a certain level of security and privacy. However, the exterior door seems to bear more weight, and it must always be in good shape. Here is how you can make sure the door is usually in perfect condition.

How to Repair an Exterior Door

With exterior doors, there can always be two significant problems; the door could either be squeaking or sagging.
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Repairing sagging doors

1. Snugging up the screws

Before starting the process, you need to gather all the materials and tools required, and they include a screwdriver, Allen wrench, pry bar, screen roller, corded drill, rags, and utility knife.

The first step is to open the back of the door then unscrew the top hinge. If the screws are an inch long or less, then that means the framing lumber is not supporting it, and the door is remaining up only because of the door jab. On the good side, if the crews are long, then the only thing you will need to do is to tighten them. Also, before doing so, you will need to make sure the ends are not stripped.

After ensuring the long screws are not stripped, install them by angling them toward the center of the jamb. Snug them slowly as you check whether or not the margins are even and the sagging has stopped. If not, continue tightening until it stops, but take care not to over-tighten it as the door will bend to another direction.

On the other hand, if the screws are short, the best thing to do is to replace them with long ones since the short ones do not reach the wall stud properly, hence not holding up to the door weight adequately.

2. Filling stripped holes

Alternatively, if the sagging is caused by stripped holes, then you will need to locate these holes and fill them up. This process requires that you first open the door and place a doorstop under it. Identify which hinge has stripped holes and unscrew the screws on it, then remove it. Using a dowel, take a reasonable amount of carpenter’s glue then enter it into the stripped holes. Take a few minutes to let the glue dry, then predrill a hole to an appropriate size the place back the hinge and its screws, then screw it back.

3. Using shims

Another simple way would be to use shims made of cardboard and fitting them between the hinge and the jamb. The shim will aid the alignment of the door with the hinge. Avoid using many shims at once, just put one at a time until the door is in its right position again. While this is a “guesswork” technique, it usually works like a charm.

Repairing squeaking door hinges

Another problem that is also common with exterior doors is squeaking during closing or opening. In such cases, you need to lubricate the door hinges using silicone spray. For other door hardware, you can always use graphite.


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