A little copper awning would look right there. You'd have to move the light
above the door, maybe put a couple of small fixtures under the awning. As to
extending the life of the existing door and frame till you break down and
replace it all- dig out all the rotted wood and fill with epoxy filler or
bondo, prime, and paint with the most expensive marine-rated paint you can
find. If structural parts of the frame are rotted, you need a Norm
Abrams -style carpenter to dutchman in new wood. When you finally replace
the whole entryway, look real hard at the sill and perimeter joist- front
door setups like that LOVE to rot the framing under the threshold out, since
rain running down the door and wall gets into the voids around the
doorframe, and follows it down to the bottom.
Whoever designed the house should have extended the top roof out 3-5 feet,
and added bulkheads or columns around the entryway, to inset it out of the
weather a foot or three. I've also seen a 'phone booth' entryway added, with
a second front door, and a faux balcony and little rail on top. Sunroom
companies can do stuff like that, out of stock color-matched to the trim. A
glass or screen door faces the weather, and you can lock that and leave the
real front door open, on nice days.
If the vertical jamb is in contact with , say, a concrete porch, you may
want to caulk the seam so water will not collect there. Also, the threshold
should be above the concrete, not flush with it. If it is flush, make sure
the porch slopes away from the threshold, and the crack between them is
sealed with a flexible caulk, such as GE exterior silicone caulk (comes in
During significant rainfall, get out there and see where the water goes
after it splashes against the door and the porch surface. That will give you
a clue how to proceed. If the gap between the jamb, or the threshold, is
more than 1/4 inch, I would not seal it, as it might dry out between
rainstorms. The pitch of the porch is important. Should slope away, not be
flat or reverse pitch.
I agree. There is something here other than a paint issue.
You may need to use different materials (not different paint, but a rot
resistant wood or other materials, replace more than you are to eliminate
the real problem, find leaks coming from another area etc. This is something
that an on site inspection by a knowledgeable professional with experience
in the area is the answer.
Using better quality wood would help (no pun intended). Replacement
wood should be hardwood that has several coats of oil based varnish on
all sides that you can't see. The parts that you can see should be
primed (probably 3 coats) with oil based primer and painted with oil
based paint. That and some asort of roof or awning should do it.
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