Internal doors sticking in frames

nickyboy

Norven Mankey
At chez Nickyboy we have a bit of a rash of these. I wonder what's going on?

Is the house "settling"...it's about 25 years old so maybe unlikely?

Is Derbyshire slowly sliding into the sea?

Is it something to do with having just switched the heating on the past few weeks?


...and, what is the best solution? Obviously if the house is falling down or Derbyshire is sliding into the sea there isn't much I can do. I was thinking of just loosening off the hinges, wedging the door a bit further from the frame (it's the vertical parts that are sticking) and retightening the hinges?
I could plane them I guess, but then I'd have to go and buy a plane so free solutions first please
 

Adam4868

Veteran
It wil be the weather swelling the doors a littlre,bit of fairy liquid on the offending point.They will smell nicer aswell.
 

Time Waster

Well-Known Member
Swelling due to moisture. Get a dehumidifier perhaps? Or shave a bit off the offending area. Or check the hinges aren't coming out from the frame.

If the latter then unscrew the screws one at a time before jamming a sliver of wood in the hole and replacing the screw. A match works well but might need whittling down a tad. Repeat with next screw until all are secure again.

Just a few ideas. I particularly find the matchstick repairs satisfying. Fixed kids toys and a lot of stuff with a carefully whittled matchstick! Appeals to the secret bodger in me!
 

Globalti

Legendary Member
Wood has an amazing ability to absorb water, which makes it swell. The weather has been pretty wet so I expect the general humidity is making your doors swell - we stayed with my cousin in Orkney and every single damned door in their house needed slamming to get it to shut. When they came to stay with us we noticed that they slammed every door, even though MY doors (all fitted by me) all shut perfectly with a nice satisfying click from the latch.

The proper solution is to remove the doors and plane them, preferably by an even amount on both the long edges but that would mean you would need to deepen the hinge rebates slightly, so try planing the opening edge a little first. This will remove the paint or varnish, exposing the wood to absorbing moisture and to drying in the summer so for stability your doors ought to have at least three coats of paint or clear varnish - Dulux Trade polyurethane in satin finish looks like a waxed finish and is very forgiving of bad brushing technique as it shrinks down very thin on drying. Do not go out and buy an electric plane, they are difficult to use and over-aggressive; buy an old-school long hand plane (plenty around second-hand) and a sharpening stone and learn how to sharpen and reset the blade; there is great satisfaction to be had from using and maintaining a simple tool like this and improving those irritating things around the house. Le Corbusier said a house should be a machine for living in and that means everything should function well and smoothly. As a side benefit, planing doors is a good little workout for those arm and shoulder muscles that don't get much use in cycling; set the door on its side on a non-slip surface like carpet with a dust sheet to collect the shavings, straddle it and plane towards the top and bottom, stopping frequently to check your work. It might help if you drew a pencil line along both sides as a gauge to show how far you need to plane. Of course if you take off more than a couple of mm you will also need to deepen the latch rebate and hope that the hole for the handle spindle is big enough to allow for the latch being set deeper in the door, and then you will need to re-fix the handles and any escutcheons. This is why it is probably best also to shave the hinge side because re-fitting the hinges a little deeper is easier than the latch! For the hinge rebates you will need a sharp chisel.
 

Globalti

Legendary Member
If the hinge screws are working loose, plug the holes with matchsticks as described by TW above but glue the matchsticks in with PVA.
 

Beebo

Firm and Fruity
Location
Hexleybeef
Settlement is a possibility, but you would see other evidence such as cracking around door openings, and windows would be sticking.

Moisture is the most likely cause. I run a dehumidifier through autumn and winter, and get about 2 ltrs per day.
 
3 in 1
 
OP
nickyboy

nickyboy

Norven Mankey
An update....I'm not the most handy of individuals but I took the door off and chiselled out the hinge rebate a bit as I don't possess a plane

It's improved it a bit so the door sort of sticks a bit rather than needs a heavy shoulder to shut it. Next time I have someone in who knows what they're doing (unlike me) they can sort it properly
 
An update....I'm not the most handy of individuals but I took the door off and chiselled out the hinge rebate a bit as I don't possess a plane

It's improved it a bit so the door sort of sticks a bit rather than needs a heavy shoulder to shut it. Next time I have someone in who knows what they're doing (unlike me) they can sort it properly
Move house. Added to that you can increase your awesomeness the further south you go*

*only applies down to the Thames obviously.
 

meta lon

Guru
As has been said, its just a bit of swelling in the wood
The heating will sort it.

My workplace has a timber frame and 50 apartments , i tend to adjust with the hinges using shims so i dont need to plane the door. 100 fire doors and and about 300 apartment doors.
Thankfully only odd one's need a bit of adjustment from time to time.
I really wouldn't want to plane the door unless its dragging or the frame is too tight to adjust with the hinge recess.
When you plane a door that's it..when it shrinks you have a large gap.

They tend to get tight in damp weather and shrink in hot dry weather.
Just like a wooden gate or fence etc
 
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