door warping how to avoid

If you ask us about the most elegant and beautiful additions to any home, the plain and simple answer would be ‘indoor and outdoor wooden/stylish doors’. There is no denying that doors are more than just gateways – they provide a unique touch to the place and impeccably complements its décor.

Like most things, doors too can start to develop problems over time. Excessive heat/cold, moisture, improper seal or cracks can cause the door to warp. A warped door allows air to enter or escape your home, and how can we forget all other creatures like bugs, rodents and….we hope you got the picture.

If you have a wrapped door – don’t worry as it can happen to the best of us – we’re here to help you. Fortunately, there are some useful tips to avoid and fix door warping. Fixing a warped door can save you money, time, and of course, the hassle of installing a new door. So, before we tell you how to fix and avoid door warping, let’s get to know a little bit about door warping.

What is Door Warping?

Door warping is a deformity in wood that normally occurs because of the fluctuation of different parts of the wood's moisture content.  This means that if a door has a drier part as compared to other parts, it will shrink faster and cause stress that leads to change in the shape of the wood. Therefore, a seemingly harmless defect can cost you money and time.     

The Causes of Door Warping  

There can be several reasons, but one of the leading causes is installing the door at a more humid location. Moisture is one of the most challenging issues that usually affect the appearance of your door. It means that if the moisture dries out of one side of the door and remains present at the other side, there is no equilibrium in the door's moisture content. This will result in warping and swelling.

During winter, a running furnace can also dry out the moisture out of the air and cause warping by affecting the door's moisture content. Having different finishes on both sides of the door or only on one side can also cause the door to warp.

What You Can Do To Avoid Door Warping

To avoid the problem, you need to get to the root of that issue. Keep in mind that the first step to warp prevention is storing the door in the right place. DoorDesignLab recommends storing your doors in cool, dry areas.

Make sure to keep the doors AWAY (we cannot stress enough) from sunlight, radiators, and any source of water. You know why we’re saying it? Well, we know about some people who stored their doors in a place that had a humidifier. Yeah, a humidifier…Shocking, right?

There has to be good ventilation and always store them horizontally and on a flat surface. If you have to store several doors, try laying them on top of each other. In addition, never store doors vertically. Try storing the doors for at least 36 hours to ensure their temperature becomes level with the environment's temperature.            

Now, lay the door as flat as possible and start applying two coats of finish over all the edges of the door. A general tip for you to avoid door warping is that you need to spend extra on coats. Many people use just one coat, but it is not enough. So, it is best to use two coats over the bottom and top portions of the door to avoid door warping. While applying the coat, make sure that you strictly follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer.                        

Effective Tips To Avoid Door Warping

You can't control environmental conditions, but it doesn't mean you just relax and don't do anything about it. As both interior and exterior doors are prone to warping, there are some effective ways to prevent it from happening.

  • Tip 1: As we mentioned earlier that moisture is the main culprit behind door warping, you should consider using a dehumidifier. 
  • Tip 2: Make sure to apply the sealant to all six sides of the door. Some people don't apply it around the top and bottom of the door as these are areas which soak up moisture more easily.
  • Tip 3: There is less door warping on shorter doors as compared to taller and big doors.
  • Tip 4: Adjusting your door when the weather is changing or about to change is a big mistake. It is because a fluctuation in temperature will increase the chances of door warping.
  • Tip 5: It is best to polish the door twice a year.
  • Tip 6: You need to install a cover over the doorway.
  • Tip 7: If you want to protect your door, we recommend you to use polyurethane sealant.
  • Tip 8: It is best to get a weather-resistant door that can withstand temperature variations. We recommend it because spending a bit extra cash can save you money and time in the future. Consider two naturally water-resistant woods like Teak and White Oak.

How To Avoid Wood Warping: The Takeaway

It all comes down to what actions you take in your effort to avoid door warping. If the door is made of poor-quality materials, you can expect door warping within a couple of years after installation or maybe even earlier. Even if the door is made of good-quality materials, it is important to take care of it and have it polished twice a year.

Overall, it is safe to say that you can avoid door warping by simply taking some precautionary measures. Is it the right place to say, “Prevention is better than cure”?