Refer to these pics in the URL below and in particular where the tape
is near the bottom of the door jamb. Can I just splice out say 6" of
the wood where taped and just splice in another or do I need to
replace the entire jamb? Meanwhile I did a work in progress spackle
job where the wood rotted (taped areas) to make it somewhat
presentable till I decide how to really fix it.
What size wood(s) is used for the jamb here?
You have more than just a jamb there.
As far as I can tell, you have the jamb and three pieces of trim.
- The jamb is usually 3/4 stock by whatever width the jamb is.
- The first piece of trim looks to be 1 x 2 stock
- The next piece of trim is maybe 1/4" by 2". Something like this, but
with a bull nose to give it that profile:
- The face trim may be the same material but without the bull nose.
Can you cut out the bottom and replace just the rotted sections?
Probably. Hard to tell since we can't really see how it's all put
together, but it seems like everything is just built up from the rough
You might even be able to find some vinyl stock in the same sizes or
cut to fit so that it'll never rot again. Vinyl can be painted to
Hopefully you won't find that the rough opening material is rotted
also, but you very well might.
Of course, the first question is this:
Why is the bottom of that entire area rotted? Does water collect there
so that the wood wicks it up? If so you need to fix that first. If
fixing the water issue is a real problem, then going with vinyl might
be a really good idea.
On Wed, 11 Jul 2012 18:49:29 -0700 (PDT), DerbyDad03
I think water splashes around there from the overhead breezeway (no
gutter) that connects to the roof above this door. I know a picture
is worth a 1000 words here but it's raining right now so its hard to
take good outside pictures right now. I will consider what you said.
It's raining right now so hard to take pics but the concrete slope
should be sloping mildly to the left in the picture because there is a
driveway on that side where the waterflow should carry it to the
street. I think there is water that splashes there from the overhead
breezeway due to no gutters. Odd thing is that the same thing is on
the right side of the same door without a problem... go figure.
We've been getting storms almost every day and I just wondered if you
would happen to be nearby. I do volunteer work, sometimes. If you
would have been nearby, I would have offered direct help.
I dunno - what does it measure. My tape won't reach from here.
Whether you have to replace the jamb is dependent on how much of the
existing jamb is rotted, and the condition of the rest of the jamb and
the fit of the door. If you're going to splice something in, don't go
with wood, go with one of the PVC wood substitutes, like Azek.
There's a company that manufactures wooden door jambs with the bottom
foot or so made from PVC. They save people from having to do the work
15 or 20 years later. In lieu of that, and at the very least, the
back and bottom of the jambs and casings should be painted/sealed.
Epoxy works well for sealing the endgrain prior to painting. Git-Rot
is a very low viscosity epoxy which gets wicked up into the wood and
is a good product for such an application
It pains me that people are still designing and using wooden door
jambs and casings in high exposure areas. I see a lot of campgrounds
that use unfinished cedar (hey, it's cheap!) in showers and bathrooms
and the bottom sections are all rotten.
Not just Azek, but any of the vinyl moulding products from various
manufacturers that can be found in most home centers.
When I needed new trim for a few windows and a new storm door, I went
with vinyl trim. It's staying white anyway, so I didn't need to be
concerned with paint.
With the various styles of vinyl mouldings avaialable, you can build
your own profile. Super glue works great on vinyl. It slides around a
bit at first, but after 5 - 10 seconds it's solid.
You might consider "restoring" the rotted would with:
Scrape it down to bare wood, remove loose rotted material, restore &
build up the areas that are missing.
The "pint kit" gives you ~55 cubic inches of wood epox "paste" and 55
cubic inches of liquid wood (injectable / pourable liquid epoxy).
WIth this amount of wood epox you can create a chuck of solid
material 5.5" x .75" x 12"...... seems like pint kit would be enough
to do the job.
I'd leave a clean gap at the bottom so water cannot be wicked.
I've this stuff a number of time since the late 1980's. Never had a
failure, never been disappointed.
All the comments about water, threshold slope, etc are valid.
With exterior wood applications, the rules are:
1) keep it dry
2) if you cannot keep it dry, design & install so it will dry (avoid
situations where caulk traps water rather than providing water
Course of action will be influenced by age of door, expected / desired
service life of the door system and how good a fix you want.
In my experience, this is a very common problem with exposed doors. Both
door frames in our old house wicked up water at the bottom and rotted,
and I just had to replace two of our entry door jambs last year for
similar problems (both doors were less than five years old!).
The steel doors were still in good shape, so I decided just to replace
the jambs. After seeing how common the wicking problem is, I chose to use
composite door frames instead of wood. I measured the hinge sizes and
locations carefully (to the nearest 1/32"), and special ordered new
composite door jamb assemblies from my local Lowes. The new jambs came
mortised ready to install my existing door.
While I had everything apart, I wanted to make the door opening as water
tight as possible. So I also installed a PVC jamb sill from
www.jamsill.com. If any water should find it's way past the jamb and door
sill, the jamsill tray will direct it out of the building instead of
rotting the structure underneath.
I did find a little bit of rot under the door sill when I took the door
frame out. Thankfully it was rather small so I was able to cut out a tiny
section of the plywood siding and replace it with a small patch before
installing the new frame.
Anywhere I had to add new trim (under the lower door frame, for
instance), I used composite decking material. I couldn't find the PVC
trim (like Azek) at our local stores, and the composite decking cut and
fastened as well as wood.
The only hurdle with the composite frame and trim is that you have to
scuff it up with sandpaper and use the proper primer to get the paint to
stick. It took me the coat of primer and three coats of paint to cover
the composite trim, but it turned out great.
Your installation is a little unique with the door set back in the
opening like that. From what I can tell you have additional trim around
the outside of the door jamb. I would use PVC or composite trim to
replace any additional pieces. You also might need a spacer at the
bottom to lift the door frame up slightly so use the jambsill pan, but
it's hard to tell from here until the old jamb is out.
I suppose you could just cut away the lower 6-8 inches or so on each side
and patch those in with PVC trim, but that seems like a lot of work for a
jamb that might be leaking and rotting elsewhere. If you're going to fix
it, you might as well pull things apart and make sure there is no further
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