How to restore an interior wooden door with your own hands

How to restore an interior wooden door with your own hands Do-it-yourself restoration of an old interior door + photo and video

Interior a door that has lost its beauty of appearance can always be restored, saving on the purchase of a new door block. Do-it-yourself restoration of a wooden interior door begins after 100% identification of flaws.

Deformation of the multi-layer door leaf. A door that is curved can hardly be closed, or huge gaps can remain due to a loose fit to the frame. The flaw is common for products that are made in several layers of wood.

The reason may be a violation of the gluing technology, poor-quality material or intense exposure to water. Small curvatures will be compensated for by the fit of the frame, and if there is a strong curvature, it is necessary to replace the top layer of the skin in order to relieve stress.

Probable flaws on the door

The restoration process should be started, having determined the degree and type of damage. Different designs of wood doors may have different flaws, and to eliminate it, you need to choose the appropriate method.

  1. Peeling of cover sheets from the frame.

    A defect may appear due to the use of a low-quality adhesive by the manufacturer or if the recommended operating conditions are violated. It can be restored by repeated gluing with further exposure of the product under the press. But the massive frame, as well as the coating sheets, will react differently to moisture and temperature changes. When peeling, the decorative type of coating will often crack or even break in pieces. Small cracks are hidden by means of putty, and if the peeled sheet cannot be restored and needs to be replaced.

  2. Loosening of the glued door frame. The result of the flaw is a loose covering, as well as the appearance of cracks. It can be assumed that the whole product is bent, and in order to make the right decision, inspect both structural elements. If the problem is in the box, it should be reinforced by removing the trims.
  3. Skewed door leaf.

    The diagnosis should be started by inspecting the hinges, and if the door is too loose, the door may stop closing. If you find a misalignment, and this is often the case on the frame, where the elements are connected by a cut, then you need to align with wedges. Grooves are cut out in the corners, and then they are filled with an adhesive composition. Sharpened at an angle of 100 degrees should be hammered in until the frame is perfectly aligned.

  4. A small increase in the gaps between the door frame and the leaf will likewise be a defect.

    Heat will escape from the house through the sash, which does not fit tightly, and the quality of sound insulation decreases. The problem with small gaps is solved by gluing with a seal.

And now about the restoration, as such.


How to update an interior wooden door

Not always repairing interior doors will not always call for radical actions that associated with complete disassembly of the product. A sash that has aged is enough to update.

Together with the repair of the cosmetic type of interior doors made of wood, they replace locks, hinges and handles loosened from time to time. They update old doors at home with their own hands like this:

  1. How to restore an interior wooden door with your own hands You need to start the update by laying the product on level surface. All fittings must be removed, and in order to obtain a high-quality result, it is important to clean the canvas from a dry layer of paint and varnish material. Hard paint needs to be softened by warming up with a building hair dryer up to +600 degrees. After that, it will be easy to clean off with a spatula.

    The second method is the use of chemical paint washers. The solution will help melt the dry layer that needs to be gently wiped off with a rag. The final preparation of the canvases will be grinding. For work, use a grinding machine or rubbed by hand using sandpaper. Sanding helps repair small scratches on wood doors and removes paint residues.

  2. The remaining actions of the direction to properly seal cracks and cracks. Large flaws are hidden with a putty composition, and small ones need to be filled with hot wax. Any scratches remaining after sanding must be wiped off with a wax pencil.
  3. To make a hole in a solid wood door, you need to prepare a putty. The constituent components will be wood dust and varnish composition.

    The hole sealed with such putty will forever be hidden from the eyes. The filler needs to be firmly glued to the wood and nothing will crack.

  4. After finishing work, it is important to sand the entire sash surface with fine emery paper. Remove dust residues with a clean cloth.
  5. Improving old wooden doors requires choosing varnish, drying oil, paint, or stain.

    The paint and varnish material is applied with a brush, spray or roller. The product needs to be painted only in a horizontal position so that there are no drips.

After the paint and varnish material has dried, fittings are placed on the renewed sashes and attached to the door frames with new hinges.

How to restore a wooden door leaf

Do-it-yourself restoration of interior doors will be carried out in three steps:

  • Preparatory stage - the sash must be removed from the hinges, all accessories, soft upholstery or a layer of paint and varnish material are removed.
  • Renewal - the product needs to be putty where cracks appear and the holes need to be repaired with putty.

    After hardening, the putties are passed with a grinder. Dust residues are wiped off with a cloth and the prepared surfaces are painted.

  • End - the sash needs to be hung on the box with hinges, and the lock, handle and latch are installed. If the loot is loosened, reinforcement is carried out by means of anchor bolts. The gaps between the frame and the wall should be blown out with polyurethane foam.

There are several ways to restore wooden doors:

  1. To renew a door that was previously varnished, you need to remove the old varnish layer from the wood. To do this, sand everything with sandpaper in the direction of the wood grain. The new composition is applied by means of foam rubber or using a flute brush. The first two layers are coated with an interval of three hours. Staining for the third and fourth time is carried out a day later, and there should be 4 layers in total.

    After drying, the product needs to be polished with felt.

  2. Renovation with veneer involves complete cleaning of the product. Cover the sash and veneer with contact adhesive. The workpieces must be left to dry for at least 1 hour. You will need a press for reliable fastening, but this equipment is usually not at home.

    Veneer sheets are laid on the sash, and then quickly and with strong pressure, it is required to rub with a wooden block. For the reliability of gluing, it is required to pass centimeter by centimeter, and instead of a bar, an iron heated to +500 degrees can be used, but after this method the veneer often swells.

  3. An old timber sash can be covered with laminate or MDF panels. Iron or mashing will not help here, and the product will need to be placed under a press.
  4. When restoring a hollow-type canvas, it must be insulated.

    After removing the panel, the pockets between the frame elements must be filled with sawdust, mineral wool or another type of insulation.

  5. The timber entrance door can be restored from the inside with faux leather. The material can be nailed for furniture, create a pattern on the surface. In order to have bulges and additional insulation, it is required to put foam rubber under the skin.
  6. A very cracked sash from the solid wood needs to be restored with clapboard.

    The work will require an accurate fit of the workpiece, and in the end it is important to sand and varnish the surface.

The most popular restoration method is conventional staining.

Removing the old paintwork

Do-it-yourself restoration of old interior doors cannot be started until the old paint layer is completely removed. There are three methods:

  • How to restore an interior wooden door with your own hands Warming up - a heat gun is required for work, and a building hair dryer will be another name for the device. Heating of the surface is carried out evenly, and it is impossible to heat in one place for a long time so that the wood is not damaged.

    The formation of burning indicates a violation of technology, and the softened paint is removed with a spatula.

  • Mechanical removal. There will be provided for erasing paint with a grinder, grinder or even an electric drill with a special grinding attachment.
  • Chemical cleaning - removal of the old layer of material with reagents is carried out in a well-ventilated room / outdoors. Gloves and glasses are used during work, and chemical solutions will soften the paint, which is then scraped off with a spatula and washed with a rag.

Of all the methods, mechanical removal is most often used. The chemical composition and the hair dryer, if the technology is violated, can even spoil the tree.

Sanding, filling and priming

After the paint is removed, it is important to sand the surface. First, use a coarse sandpaper to remove any residual burrs, paint, and bumps. The sash needs to be wiped off dust with a cloth, and the second arrival of grinding is done with fine-grained sandpaper.

It is required to wipe off dust from the treated canvas, and degrease the surface with a solvent. White spirit will do. If sanding does not help with cracks, it is required to fill a putty made from a mixture of sawdust with PVA glue into the deep pits of the door leaf. Store-bought compounds can be used, and the dried composition must be wiped with sandpaper. Before starting painting, the surface must be primed, and such a process cannot be neglected, since otherwise the coating will be unevenly absorbed into the wood.

When using the stain, the primer is not applied.


There is a large selection of paints that make it possible to obtain a matte, glossy and semi-glossy surface. For door interior blocks, water-based paints and varnishes are used. The front door must be painted with nitro paint or alkyd enamel. Stains help preserve the natural structure of the tree.

The paint must be applied in two layers on horizontally laid canvases, and it is easier to roll a flat surface with a roller. A sash with a convex pattern must be painted with a brush.

Restoration of a cracked door

If the door is dry due to the influence of high temperatures, the restoration will involve disassembling the canvases. The purpose of the repair is to eliminate the gaps between the strips, and also to prevent the panels from loosening inside the grooves. The objects of the frame of the paneled door leaf are connected by a "thorn-groove" lock, which is lubricated with an adhesive composition.

In addition, long-length self-tapping screws can be used for the screed - pins. Their caps are covered from above with decorative corks.

During the repair process of an old wooden door, the sash must be removed from the hinges, and one side must also be set vertically, remove the plugs and unscrew the pins. The adhesive composition on the castle joint has dried out long ago, and the frame elements can be easily removed. The lock connection is cleaned from the remnants of the old adhesive composition and begin to repair the panels.

All inserts are removed from the frame. The grooves and edges of the panel must be cleaned from the adhesive. It is important to blow out the door well with a vacuum cleaner so that the dust does not interfere with the bonding.A thin layer of silicone-based sealant is driven into the grooves, and after inserting the panel into its place, the selected sealant must be wiped off with a rag.

The locking connection of the frame should be coated as best as possible with carpentry adhesive.

Even PVA can be used. The frame elements are put in place, and the door leaf is clamped with clamps, the pins are screwed into the holes and the plugs are covered. In the clamped state, the web will remain until the glue hardens perfectly. New holes cannot be drilled because they are obtained at a low angle by using a hand drill. After uneven screwing of the nail, the frame begins to tilt.