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Do You Need Exterior Door Repair or Replacement? Here's How to Tell

Your exterior doors, whether they're on the front, back, or side of your house, perform a lot of important duties to keep your home safe and comfortable, and they also contribute quite a bit towards your curb appeal. But when they're in poor condition, they leave your home vulnerable to a multitude of issues.

If you've noticed signs that your door isn't functioning properly or is looking rather worse-for-wear, you may be wondering if you need exterior door repair or if replacement is the better option. We'll cover some of the situations in which exterior door repair is a good solution, and signs that your exterior door really needs to be replaced entirely.

Whether you need repair or replacement, you can count on the top-rated local pros at Mr. Handyman of Central - Eastern Norfolk County and S.Shore to get the job done correctly and efficiently so you have peace of mind knowing that your home is secure and safe.

When Exterior Door Repair is Sufficient

The age-old question of repair or replace mainly comes down to the extent of the damage. If it's a relatively minor issue, it makes sense to get repair services and call it a day, but if it's a bigger problem or there are multiple issues, repairs would be more time-consuming and expensive than total replacement. In those cases, replacement is obviously the best choice. In the following scenarios, repair is usually sufficient to get your door back in good shape.

  • Peeling paint: Your handyman can take care of this by sanding, applying a new coat of paint, and sealing. It should be handled as soon as possible, because peeling paint leaves the material underneath vulnerable to rot or rust.

  • Rust or corrosion: Speaking of rust, if you have small spots of it on your metal entryway it can likely be repaired, but if the corrosion is extensive, repair isn't worth it.

  • Hinges are loose: If your entry is wobbly on its hinges, it may be possible to simply tighten it up or replace the hinges only.

  • Hinges are squeaky: This could be solved with the appropriate lubrication, or the hinge may need replacement if it's rusty.

  • Holes or rips in screen on storm door: If the issue is with your screen, not the frame, you just need screen door repair to get a new screen into the frame.

  • Degraded weather stripping: If you feel cool drafts near your entryway, it could be due to damaged weather stripping from a bout of extreme weather. If that's the problem, the weather stripping can just be replaced.

Signs Your Exterior Door Needs to Be Replaced

If the damage goes beyond the minor problems listed above, complete door replacement makes more sense financially—keeping your home comfortable and safe. Here are some situations where replacement is warranted:

Chilly Drafts

If you're shivering away in your home because of cold drafts seeping in around the frame—and it's not a simple problem with weather stripping—it could be that the door has shrunk, the frame is warped, or it was never fitted properly in the first place. Drafts make you more uncomfortable in your house, but those energy-wasting air leaks also cost you big time on your utility bill as your HVAC system is forced to work harder to compensate.

Light Coming In

Is there a halo of light around the edge of your entry? This is a more extreme version of the same problems that cause air drafts, and it's taking a huge toll on the energy efficiency of your house. It's also dangerously insecure, as an intruder wouldn't even have to try very hard to get in.

Rotten Wood

Wooden entries are exposed to the elements, which makes them vulnerable to wood rot. Stringy, spongy, soft wood is caused by rot, and the earliest symptom of rot is discoloration where the wood appears lighter or darker, or has a white, yellow or purple hue. If you notice signs of a rotten door frame, it's quite possible that the entry itself also has rot inside it.

Difficulty Opening and Closing

If you have to push and pull (and kick and punch) when you're trying to get your door open or closed, that’s a sign of poor alignment. This can be caused by a house shifting and settling over time, causing the frame to bend or warp out of alignment. If that’s the case, the whole entry should be replaced so it can easily swing open and shut.

Insect Damage

Maze-like holes or channels on your entry are the work of wood-destroying insects such as carpenter ants or termites, but the outward visible signs might not be that obvious. Light doors that don't seem as heavy as they used to or make a hollow sound when tapped could be under attack, being hollowed out from the inside.

No Noise Separation

This is different from the entry itself squealing when you open it. If you find yourself disturbed by outside noises coming through the door even though it's closed, something is wrong. It's not going to cut out 100% of all noise, but it should do a good job of muffling sounds from outside.

Foggy Window

When a window becomes foggy from condensation trapped between two panes of glass, you need window replacement—and if that window happens to be in a door, you need door replacement.

Vandalism Damage

If you've been forced to deal with vandalism or home intrusion that has resulted in broken locks, large dents, or damage to the frame and edge of your entryway, replacement is needed to re-secure your home and give you back your peace of mind.

Mr. Handyman is Your Local, Trusted Exterior Door Repair Company

Hopefully this information has helped you make an informed decision about repair or replacement, but if you're still not sure, our service technicians can take a look at the problem and offer some expert advice. Whether you're in Walpole or nearby areas such as Norwood, Marshfield, or Duxbury, you can rely on Mr. Handyman of Central - Eastern Norfolk County and S.Shore for quality craftsmanship and excellent customer service.

Give us a call today at 508-465-2092 or request service online to find out what we can do to maintain your home and make your life easier!