Can you fix a rotted door or do you need to replace it?

Often, a jammed section of a door will rot out. You know you need to replace that section, but don’t want to invest in an entirely new door. Since the rest of the door is good as new, you should just be able to replace the jammed section, right? Not exactly. 

While you can fix just the rotted section, you’ll be calling your contractor back in six months to replace the entire door. Let’s dive into why this is as well as what type of door you should replace your current one with to make it last longer.

Why is my door rotting?

The reason why doors rot is the same reason you become smelly on a summer day: hot, sticky, humid weather. In humans, we call this sweat but when it comes to doors, we refer to it simply as moisture. The moisture builds up and creates a hospitable home for a variety of microorganisms. These microorganisms see the door as an all you can eat buffet. They chew through parts of your door, leaving behind rot. 

Why do I need to replace the whole door?

As we stated above, you shouldn’t just replace one section of a door. If you do, you’ll need to replace the entire door six months down the line. This means paying your contractor twice: once to replace the rotting area and the second time for a new door. While you might enjoy seeing the Carlton Building Services team, we doubt you’d want to pay two invoices instead of one. 

When only the rotted section is replaced, it offsets the moisture and the door slowly begins to slant. The slant will become worse until about six months later when the door will be completely slanted and need to be replaced with a new, straight one. 

What should I replace a rotted door with?

If your door does experience rot, the initial contractor probably installed a wooden door. Compared to doors made of fiberglass or steel, wooden doors are much more likely to rot. When you’re replacing a rotted door, it could be worthwhile to consider using a metal or fiberglass. 

Fiberglass doors are the most durable, low maintenance, and energy efficient doors on the market. They will last for years to come and will not rot like a wooden door. The only real disadvantage to fiberglass is that some people might not enjoy the aesthetic of these doors. 

Similarly, steel doors are more durable and low maintenance than wooden doors. Similar to fiberglass, they also won’t rot or warp over time. But when compared to fiberglass, they are not as durable or energy efficient.  

Next time you think you only need to replace one section of a door, do yourself a favor and replace the entire door with one which won’t rot. Steel and fiberglass are great options when replacing an exterior door and they’ll stop you from having to replace the door again in the future. 

Carlton Building Services in Hampton Roads Virginia

Carlton Building Services specializes in repairs, maintenance, renovations, remodelings and build-outs for a variety of clients in Hampton Roads, Virginia Beach, and Chesapeake areas. We have years of experience handling projects in the retail, office, and healthcare space and would love to work with you on your next project!

To learn more about our services, check out past project highlights or contact Carlton Building Services to see how we can help with your next project. 

JP Carlton

J.P. Carlton

J.P. Carlton is the founder of Carlton Building Services, a Hampton Roads-based construction company.