How to Seal a Warped Door


A warped door is the result of moisture penetrating the wood during rapid changes in temperature and humidity. Winter is a particularly prevalent time for wood warp to occur. Since the atmosphere inside is drastically different than that outside, the faces of the door undergo an imbalance of moisture. The imbalance results in differing stresses being placed upon the wood. The higher moisture side will stretch and cause the door to warp. Sealing a warped door is a multistep process designed to minimize future damage and remediate the incorrect fit caused by the warping process.

Things You'll Need

  • Cement blocks
  • Sandpaper
  • Sanding block
  • Wood sealer
  • Paint or varnish
  • Paint roller or brush
  • Paint tray
  • Hinged threshold seal
  • Screw driver
  • Weather stripping

Reducing the Warp

  • Acclimatize the door. Allowing the door to hang through at least one heating and cooling season will allow the wood to adjust and reduce the warp.

  • Remove an interior door that will be exposed to excess humidity during a renovation involving curing cement or newly plastered or dry walled rooms.

  • Store the door in a dry location until excess humidity is gone from the area where the door will be hung.

  • Pile cement blocks on a severely warped door to correct the swelling while the door dries.

Sealing the Door

  • Examine a dried door to discover where it is binding.

  • Lightly sand the area until the door moves freely.

  • Seal the sanded wood with a brushed or rolled on application of wood sealer, followed by paint or varnish.

  • Remove grease and dirt from the door stop.

  • Press adhesive-backed plastic foam weather stripping along the the top and side of the door frame. Seal the bottom of the door with a hinged threshold seal cut to fit your door. Screw the hinged seal to the bottom front surface of the door using the screws provided with the seal kit. The seal butts against the door jamb to prevent drafts and energy loss.

Tips & Warnings

  • All materials are available at your local hardware or building supply store.
  • Never seal a warped door when it is still wet. Allow the door to dry before applying sealer.
  • Doors must be sealed on all six sides to prevent warping.
  • Use wood sealer before painting. Paint primer will not seal wood.

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  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/ Images
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