Fix the Gap Under a Garage Door
LESLIE: John in Kentucky needs some help with a garage door. Tell us about the problem.
JOHN: I’m calling about my garage door. I’ve got a house that’s 40 years old …
JOHN: … and I think the garage door is the same age. It’s wooden and the house is settled on the corners of the driveway. And now I’m starting to get gaps and not only that; part of the garage door is rotten at the bottom.
TOM: Hmm, OK.
JOHN: And I’m worried because the gaps are getting big enough where our little dog, Buster; he can get through it. And also, other critters can get in, you know?
JOHN: So we don’t really want to pay a lot of money right now to replace it, so I was wanting to know what we could do to fix it; to make a stop-gap measure. And then, also, I don’t know anything about garage doors.
TOM: Well, a wooden door is, you know, your traditional garage door and they are very durable. They also happen to be very, very heavy. The good news is, in your situation, that you probably have a fairly wide and thick bottom rail to that door …
TOM: … which actually can be cut to the shape of the now settled garage floor. If you were to take, say, a block of wood …
LESLIE: And there’s enough sort of on the top to allow for this new part to come down?
TOM: Yeah, because we’re only going to take a little bit off. Basically, you’re only going to take off as much wood from the high side as the gap on the low side; if that makes sense to you.
JOHN: Right. OK.
TOM: You can take like a compass and you can scribe it by holding like the metal part of the compass against the floor and drawing a straight line across the door. What’ll happen is that compass will follow the angle of the floor and transcribe the line up on the door and that would be the cut line. So you only want to take off enough to level it out and you could probably do it with a jigsaw and the door kind of half in the air; sort of blocked open. And then …
JOHN: OK, really? So a jigsaw would do it.
TOM: Sure. And then what you want to do is sand it and smooth it all out. You’re going to add some new weatherstripping at the whole bottom edge of that door and that should work really well. It’ll come down. It’ll be nice and tight and it’ll seal it up.
JOHN: OK, great. Well, thank you all for your time. I really appreciate it.
TOM: You’re welcome, John. Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.