How to Replace Your Interior Doors In Just Two Weeks
That title reads a little sarcastic, right?
Good. Because if you're looking for a tutorial on how to replace your doors completely inefficiently, you've come to the right place.
And, no, we did not special order anything y'all. This was just some good old-fashioned door replacing. Seriously. If you had told me that replacing our interior doors was going to be one of the hardest jobs that would also take the longest, I would have laughed in your face.
But it did, you guys. It took almost two full weeks for six interior doors. And it was far more difficult and expensive than I thought. By the time we realized what a job it was, it was too late. And, well, honestly, I don't even care because they needed to be replaced.
Side note: it's so nice that Mr. T and I are not private people, but I can assure you I grew tired of going to the bathroom with the door open. The dogs sure loved it though.
The previous homeowners painted the doors a tan color. It was the same color as the walls. I didn't mind it that much until we painted our hallway and when I realized that under that paint was the most beautiful wood. And. as you can see in the pic above, the doors just seemed to stand out in our beautifully finished blue hallway. And I was so sad that they painted over the wood. There's a special spot in you know where for people who paint over wood.
So we decided to take down the original doors. We'd sand them, stain them, and give them some new life. The previous homeowners left a sander behind so all we needed were some belts and a can of stain and we were all set.
We could not have been more wrong. It took Mr. T HOURS and an additional trip to the hardware store to sand less than 1/4 of a door. So we decided to replace them. Lowes was no help because we have an old house with old doors so they're weird sizes. They'd have to be specially ordered and we didn't have that kind of time.
We paid a visit to our local hardware store and the guy said they could order the doors, cut them down, and make all the necessary holes and such for hanging. I could have hugged him. He made me so happy.
They came and picked up our old doors to measure and make sure everything was correct. We waited totally patiently for a little over a week and they delivered the new doors.
And they were so pretty. I wanted to hug those dudes some more.
I stained them (it was a process which I will share later). And they were even prettier. I mean, seriously. I had no idea I cared about interior doors this much.
Then it was time to put them up and I was beyond excited. We bought new hardware and everything to make them so shiny and new. I couldn't wait to see it all come together.
We started with the bedroom door. We put the hinge on the door and tried to slide it in its home only to find that it didn't fit. The little slot for the hinges was slightly off. But, the GD thing didn't fit. Mr. T measured and re-measured and we could not, for the life of us, figure out the issue. Then he realized that the original door was cut unevenly. So obviously that was the problem.
So we thought we'd move on. Maybe we could figure out what to do with the bedroom door. Well, the craft room door didn't fit. The office door fit, but wouldn't close. Same thing with the linen closet. One by one those freaking doors just did not fit. We ended up with only ONE door fitting like it was supposed to. ONE. ONE.
And should I mention this was a week before Mr. T's birthday bash. That could make things a little awkward, no?
We called the hardware store, but it was a holiday weekend so they said they'd call on Tuesday. So we had to wait THREE more days just to find out what we could even do.
Tuesday came and the guys called us and came over. Everything was a hot mess. And the guys were a little shocked that we were able to get into this mess in the first place since we were amateurs and had voiced our concerns to the guy at the hardware store. They also gave us a list of other things we'd have difficulties with, like the door knob. Because, you know, who needs a door knob to fit right? That's not necessary at all.
Thankfully, the wonderful guys said they could come back that afternoon and make our problem go away.
And in a little over two hours, they did.
And the doors look magnificent.
Am I glad we replaced them? Yes. Absolutely.
Do I wish we would have read up on it a little more? Yes. Absolutely.
Am I disappointed we had to pay almost double the $$ for the doors. 100 % yes.
In our defense, we did tell the guy at the hardware store that we had no idea what we were doing. And we did believe there were things we couldn't do ourselves. That's why we had them cut them and get them all ready to hang. We just didn't know that we weren't actually getting them already to hang.
My advice to anyone is this:
Go the prehung route if you can. That wasn't an option for us. I now understand why people opt for that option.
If you're super handy, make sure you get all the proper tools and study up. I think it could be done if you're handy and have all the necessary things.
If you're like us and you're pretty handy and have a lot of tools, do as much as you can yourself, but consult someone who is handier or knows what the hell they're doing. You'll totally thank yourselves in the long run.
Get all the info from the hardware store and stress that you have no idea what you're doing. I mean, sit down with them and make sure it's clear that you have never in your life replaced an interior door.