Doors and Out of Plumb Walls

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Any of you guys tried to install pre-hung doors when walls aren't level and plumb? What a pain in the ass. Installed 5 and they took forever. I have never seen a house this bad. Nothing is square or plumb and I get to install the kitchen cabinets too. Oh I can't wait!! I wonder if the framers even used a level?
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Yeah. We just built a house and we are in the process of finishing it. Our framer actually did an exceptional job of keeping everything very straight and plumb.
Except once.
We had one entry closet door that was a little out of plumb on one side; and a little out in the opposite direction on the other side. And the damned thing was a narrow 20" door. We fought the thing with me on the inside of the tiny closet and the wife outside trying to get it workable. When I started trimming, I ended up removing it, rehanging it and modifying every bit of trim to make it work. Glad I didn't have to do that on every door.
RonB
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You guys ever hear of using a persuader to move the bottom of the wall at the door openings? Often saves a lot of horsing around... even with rock hanging and taped it works pretty well. ;~)
John
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John Grossbohlin wrote:

hmmmm, not with trim and a wood floor already installed and the plate Ramset in. I swear some Illegal freakin Mexican Framed this house. I'm just glad they don't want Crown Molding, hahaha
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evodawg wrote:

Fortunately we did were renting but one house we lived in was the worst out of square house I ever lived in. The good thing was the lazy cat. He would lay on the floor for hours hit the ball up the floor and watch it roll back to him. After living in the house for several years we moved, to a house that was more square with the world.
The cat was frustrated for months because he would have to get up and chase his ball as it would not roll back to him.
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Keith Nuttle wrote:

10 years ago when we were house hunting I went to a building site to talk with a builder. It was all framed up. They had used warped, bowed and/or twisted studs. Sighting down a wall it went in and out like a snake. I called it to the attention of the builder. He said, "The sheet rock will pull it all straight". I thought Yeah, right.
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Gerald Ross
Cochran, GA
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It is the the painter's responsibility to make the framing, drywall and trim look good.
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I can honestly say that I have never seen walls that are plumb or door openings that are square. I have done the prehung door thing many times on less than desirable walls and openings. Thank goodness the door openings are bigger than necessary, HUH?
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Leon wrote:

These openings are 1/2" out from top to bottom. You know what that does to the door? Half of it is either to far in on the casing or sticking out from the casing. Then you have to reset the stop, its a mess.
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wrote:

1/2" is pretty bad but there are some things you can try depending on the size and style of trim. As has been suggested, move the bottom of the wall if possible. If you can't do that, you can try to spread the problem around the door on all four corners. Lets say you're standing outside the door the door is closed and the top lock side of the door is hanging out 1/2" past the jamb. Push the top hinge side in 1/8" past the rock and pull the bottom hinge side toward you past the rock 1/8". With the door closed, now the door should only be hanging out 1/4" at the top. Now do the opposite to the lock side jamb. Pull the top 1/8" towards you and push the bottom of the lock side jamb in 1/8". Now the door should close against the stop. Although all four corners will be off, no corner will be off more than 1/8".
Basically that still makes it a pain to trim and if you are using 1x material it can still be quite difficult. If your jambs are beveled and the casing does have some relief cut, you should be able to handle the 1/8" without too much problem. If you are using mitered corners (with casing that has a detail) you'll have to adjust the angles since the casing will no longer be laying flat on the wall.
I feel your pain. Good luck.
Mike O.
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Mike O. wrote:

Thanks for that detailed explanation of what I should do. The only problem I have with it is how do you hold the door frame when you're doing all this shifting? On one of them I just divided the difference on the lock side. The door at the top is sticking out a bit and in a bit at the bottom. I did take the stop off and reposition it. It looks alright, and I doubt anyone will notice. I already told the homeowner about the problem and he's aware of it and just told me to do the best I can.
Thanks
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Put the frame up flush with everything, then take the door off and toss it in the back yard for a few days. Stick some tile under the correct corners and toss a few cinder blocks on top.
That should warp the door enough that it should look straight in the frame! :-)
-Nathan
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nhurst wrote:

You forgot the part where you spray water all over it everyday until it forms to the correct specifications.
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wrote:

Nail the jamb near the top and bottom of each jamb side near the hinges on that side and about the same place on the lock side. Get the door pretty much set (level and plumb) with your shims. Only the 4 nails are still holding things close. Tap the jambs in or out, where you need them, and add nails as you go. Check your clearance along the way.
Mike O.
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Mike O. wrote:

That's the way I normally do it. But when the wall is out by 1/2" the other side is a bit difficult to keep the door in line with the stops or drywall edge. Either the bottom of door sticks out of the jam or the top is to far inside the jam. Then it's time to get the Sawzall out and readjust the hinge side.
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I never use nails to install/repair a door. Screws for me!
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1D10T wrote:

Just curious. What do you do to the screw heads?
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Probably what you do to the nail heads. It's no more of an issue with screws than with nails. As with nails, I do try to place them where they'll be under the stop molding, which also leaves nail heads to be dealt with.
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1D10T wrote:

Ever try those trim screws with the little heads? I've used them on other things and they're nice, but easy to pull through.
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No I haven't, but with the small heads they're probably as bad as using casing or finishing nails. The two reasons I like screws are the head size and the ability to move or loosen them easily.
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