prehung exterior door too tall for rough opening


A

adrian

I am getting ready to replace an exterior door and I discovered that
the fiberglass door we selected (therma-tru) is too tall for the rough
opening. (Opening = 81.75" but appears to be slanted by 0.25" so I
really only have 81.5" to work with after it's leveled; door is 82" and
they recommend an 82.5" opening.)

So I have identified the following possible solutions:

1. The door dealers told me they could cut the door down at a cost of
$67, though it sounded like taking an inch off was getting to a limit
where the standard storm door wouldn't fit.

2. I read in this group that somebody cuts the header back to make
room for therma-tru doors which tend to be taller than everybody else.
Is that a reasonable thing to do? (Wall is not structural.)

3. I could reframe the rough opening which seems like a bit of work.

4. I could lower the subfloor. As it happens, the subfloor is rotted
out and needs to be replaced anyway, so I could replace it by something
thinner right where the door is to sink the door into the floor.
(Floor is vinyl tile on top of 1/4" plywood on top of 3/4" subfloor.)
I could support this with blocking underneath.

Anything on this list reasonable?
 
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L

Lawrence

I am getting ready to replace an exterior door and I discovered that
the fiberglass door we selected is too tall for the rough
opening. really only have 81.5" to work with after it's leveled; door is 82" and
they recommend an 82.5" opening.)

So I have identified the following possible solutions:

1. The door dealers told me they could cut the door down at a cost of
$67, though it sounded like taking an inch off was getting to a limit
where the standard storm door wouldn't fit.
That sound questionable. Since they will not be trimming a storm door,
it is probable that it will not fit.
2. I read in this group that somebody cuts the header back to make
room for therma-tru doors which tend to be taller than everybody else.
Is that a reasonable thing to do? (Wall is not structural.)
If the wall is not structural then I see no problem with this. I vote
for trimming the header.
3. I could reframe the rough opening which seems like a bit of work.
This will work, obviously. What you will end up with will be the same
dimensions as trimming the header so it should not be necessary.
4. I could lower the subfloor. As it happens, the subfloor is rotted
out and needs to be replaced anyway, so I could replace it by something
thinner right where the door is to sink the door into the floor.
(Floor is vinyl tile on top of 1/4" plywood on top of 3/4" subfloor.)
I could support this with blocking underneath.
I don't like this idea. To lower the subfloor in that one area would
create problems. The floor in that are would forever be lower than the
rest of the floor. That doesn't sound good. Trim the header.

Lawrence
 
T

tbasc

I'd rework the header.
That should not be a big problem.
That would leave everything as it should have been in the first place.
You didn't say what kind of siding you are dealing with.
That might be the fly in the ointment.
Let us know about that.
The other options are making a bad situation worse.
TB
Cornell B.Arch 66
 
B

BP

I am getting ready to replace an exterior door and I discovered that
the fiberglass door we selected (therma-tru) is too tall for the rough
opening. (Opening = 81.75" but appears to be slanted by 0.25" so I
really only have 81.5" to work with after it's leveled; door is 82" and
they recommend an 82.5" opening.)

So I have identified the following possible solutions:

1. The door dealers told me they could cut the door down at a cost of
$67, though it sounded like taking an inch off was getting to a limit
where the standard storm door wouldn't fit.

2. I read in this group that somebody cuts the header back to make
room for therma-tru doors which tend to be taller than everybody else.
Is that a reasonable thing to do? (Wall is not structural.)

3. I could reframe the rough opening which seems like a bit of work.

4. I could lower the subfloor. As it happens, the subfloor is rotted
out and needs to be replaced anyway, so I could replace it by something
thinner right where the door is to sink the door into the floor.
(Floor is vinyl tile on top of 1/4" plywood on top of 3/4" subfloor.)
I could support this with blocking underneath.

Anything on this list reasonable?
Get out the sawzall and cut a 1/2" off that header.
Then go and get coffee for the crew!
 
M

marson

I think lowering the floor before the door is reasonable, and in fact
might be attractive if the tile flushes with the door threshold.
Cutting the header can be done, if you have a sawzall. Sometimes you
get lucky and there is a filler board or a flat two by or something.
Cutting the door is probably the most work.
 
A

adrian

I'd rework the header.
That should not be a big problem.
That would leave everything as it should have been in the first place.
You didn't say what kind of siding you are dealing with.
That might be the fly in the ointment.
Let us know about that.
The other options are making a bad situation worse.
TB
Cornell B.Arch 66
When you say "rework" the header do you mean trim it or do you mean
something else?

I have asbestos (concrete) siding. I'm not sure how easy this stuff is
to cut.
 
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A

adrian

PipeDown said:
Trim the header with a router and finish the corners with a chisel.

0.25" off the bottom might not screw up the threshold considering exterior
doors come with that built into the frame. Could eliminate the slant with
the router as well.
How would you go about trimming the header with a router? I mean, I
could cut away material to make a sort of bowl like shape but then I'd
have to do the edge somehow. I suppose I could affix guide rails to
the sides of the header for the router. But I have to say this sounds
like more work to remove possibly an inch of material than something
like the sawzall suggested elsewhere in this thread.
 
S

scott21230

Buy a door that's the right size. It's called a custom door. I've
gotten several. You have to order it and pay in advance and wait 4-6
weeks to get it.
 
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A

adrian

Buy a door that's the right size. It's called a custom door. I've
gotten several. You have to order it and pay in advance and wait 4-6
weeks to get it.
It's hard to see what the advantage of this is. I imagine it would
double or triple the price of this door replacement effort rather than
just adding $70. The door manufacturer says that cutting an inch off
their door is not a problem and that they would still honor their
warranty. So why would I want to pay the big bucks for custom doors
(storm door too, presumably)?
 

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