How to Remove Door Moulding

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If your home remodeling project involves replacing your door moulding, then you will want to remove the old moulding. This may sound like an easy project, but if it is not done correctly and carefully, then you could do damage to the drywall behind the moulding and make your job bigger than you expected. Over the years, moulding may get painted over or wallpapered next to and the elements can make it adhere to the drywall. Proper removal techniques can help you save time and money on your project.

Things You'll Need

  • Utility knife
  • Work gloves
  • Safety goggles
  • Wood chisel
  • Claw hammer
  • Vice grips

Removing Door Moulding

  • Run a utility knife around the entire perimeter of the moulding to cut through any layers of paint or wallpaper that may be attached to it or any drywall that may be stuck to the back of the moulding. Wear work gloves to protect your hands while you cut, and safety goggles to protect your eyes while you are looking up at what you are cutting.

  • Work the wood chisel in behind the moulding at its lowest point, closest to the floor. The area closest to the floor is exposed to moisture from feet and other elements that may make it more difficult to remove. Once you get the moulding started from the bottom, the rest should come off relatively easily.

  • Use the wood chisel to carefully pry the moulding away from the wall. Use a rocking back and forth motion to get the moulding to lift easier. Work your way up and down the moulding piece until it becomes loose enough that you can pull it off by hand.

  • Pull the moulding off the door frame, being careful to avoid the nails.

  • Use the claw hammer to remove the finishing nails that are sticking out of the door frame. If the claw hammer cannot remove a nail, use vice grips to remove the nail by gripping tightly on the nail as close to the frame as possible and turning the nail with the grips until it comes out.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you would like to save the moulding, then use the claw hammer to carefully remove the nails once you have worked the moulding away from the frame using the wood chisel.
  • Always wear protective gloves and goggles when doing this kind of project. Pieces of metal nails or wooden door frames can fly off at any moment and present a serious danger.

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