Anonymous asked in Home & GardenDecorating & Remodeling · 9 years ago

Should I have hired a carpenter to install interior doors?

I hired a handyman to install five interior doors in existing door frames. The old doors were no longer available. These are just hollow, primed six-panel pressed woodgrain doors from HD.

The doors needed to be trimmed for width and length. Although he said he had a power planer, it looks like he used it for the side of just one door - that one was trimmed evenly. All the other trimming must have been done with his oscillating multitool. Those doors show saw marks/gouges and the cuts are uneven - if I hold a straightedge along the cuts, there are 1/16 to 1/8 and even 1/4 inch gaps; one door bottom looks concave, another looks convex, another is just wavy. I think enough material may have been removed that there isn't room left to fix them, if that's even possible.

I loaned him my router and jig to mortise the hinges. For two doors, the bottom hinge mortise didn't line up with the existing mortise in the door frame, so he chiseled one door frame mortise to make it longer, the other both longer and wider.

I trusted him to have the tools and skills to do the work when he accepted the job. I didn't look over his shoulder every minute. I didn't see these problems until I set up one of the doors for what I thought would be light sanding, then painting.

What do you think I should do? I can't do a lot of fixing myself due to a sore shoulder. To me, it looks like the doors are ruined. How would one fix a wavy, gouged cut?

Was it too much to expect a handyman to trim a door evenly, and leave it ready for light sanding and paint?

6 Answers

  • 9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    It is not too much to expect. He should have done a better job. Maybe you could get some kind of metal edge trim to cover the errors at the bottom edge.

    When trimming doors, which are usually covered with a veneer that splinters easily, you should use a saw guide, which is like a rip fence that you clamp across the face of the door and use that to guide the saw. In addition, once you know where the saw kerf will land, you score the face of the door just ABOVE the cut using a sharp utility knife, such that as the saw pulls up the wood fibers, they break at the cut, and not above it. Just a light score ~1/32" is adequate. That produces a very clean edge that can be easily stained if any light colored wood shows between the score and the cut. Typically 1/16 th of an inch or less, depending on the skills and the accuracy of the saw, etc.

  • 4 years ago


    Source(s): Grab 16000 Woodworking Plans -
  • 9 years ago

    Wow sorry for your problem, but handymen are no carpenters let alone a trim carpenter. It is his problem where he should at least try to fix the problem or to redo the job. Just to think why he would have to rip the doors to fit is unheard of. All he had to do is to mortise the hinges on the door as well as the jamb. Now the height of the door is a different story. Older homes had shorter doors back in the day which today most likely they would have to be cut down. Then you take a straight edge and clamp down to the scribe mark that would be the length. Masking tape over the scribe mark so no chipping while you saw cut along the Straight edge. Then the piece that was cut off, you take the bottom 1 1/4 inch, peel off the veneer and re glue it back inside the door with clamps. Always have references...

    Source(s): Carpenter 35 years
  • bate
    Lv 4
    3 years ago

    Carpenters Door Clamp

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  • Ann
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    We replaced all the doors in our house a few years ago and had to trim down a few doors. It depends on how much you need to trim them and what kind of door your get. If you get doors that are hollow inside and you need to trim them quite a bit, you risk cutting into the hollow part and then you would have nothing to attach the door to! We shaved a small amount off our doors with a circular saw.

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    If he did a shoddy job then he is responsible for damages only if you had a contract, otherwise your out of luck

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