Saturday, June 20, 2015

We are renovating a 100 year old house; can we use the old existing doors?

Q:

We are renovating a 100 year old house; can we use the old existing doors?

A:

Yes you can use the existing doors from the house. There are a couple of things that you should realize through about using the existing doors;

Re-using existing doors will save you money because you don’t have to buy new doors, but it will cost you money in the labour end. It takes a lot longer to hang an old door instead of hanging a new door.

Older doors are not usually square or straight. You need to be prepared that the door will not look perfect when it is re-hung.

Prepare to see gaps around the door. This is because these doors have been cut and planed and trimmed over there long life and getting the jambs tight to them might be impossible.

Re-painting or re-staining these doors will cost more than painting a new door and it will not look as good either.

The locking mechanisms might have to be replaced as well. Eventually they fail or have pieces missing from them.

Sometimes a door can look like its in good shape and then when the carpenter starts to work on it the door falls apart. This means that you wasted money on labour for a door that you aren’t able to use.

If you end up not being able to re-use all the doors and you end up short a couple of doors you are going to have a hard time finding replacement doors that will match. Not only will you have a hard to time finding old doors that will match and work in the door frames that are waiting for a door but it is extremely hard to find new doors that will look appropriate along side the older existing doors.

Remember that it’s a wonderful idea to re-use things like doors but everything comes at a cost, everything that you are usually able to save and re-use will cost you more money in the labour it takes to re-install it so that it looks proper.

Rob Abbott
Village Builders Inc.

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