Why is my Door Sticking? And How to Fix it

A door sticking is one of those common problems that can drive you up the wall. It can be even more frustrating if you need to keep the door closed to keep kids and pets indoors. 

The reason your door is sticking is often due to a few simple issues. It’s typically an easy fix and once you know what it is, you can keep it from happening again.

What is a Sticky Door?

door replacement

It’s not unusual to have a door sticking at top, bottom or even along the side. One of the more common reasons why your door is sticking is due to moisture or increased humidity.

The door could have been installed incorrectly and isn’t hanging straight. If it is off-kilter, it won’t fit into the frame and may even scrape against the floor or the top of the frame. There could be a problem with doors sticking if there is a problem with the hinges. They may have pulled away from the wall due to use and are causing the door to hang slightly off-centre.

Your door may also be sticking from wear and tear. A front door, for example, may be sticking simply because it is constantly being used. A door that gets slammed, leaned on, pulled, or yanked can also become loose.

If you are wondering how to fix a door that sticks, there may be a few things you can do yourself. If you can see that the door needs repairs, it’s important to call a professional like the experts at Milano Windows and Doors to help you fix it.

Wood Doors May Stick

entry doors canada

Wooden doors absorb moisture and they can begin to stick. You can tell if it is sticking because there are often marks.

Check your doorframe to see if there are any scratches or marks where the door is rubbing.

You can check the floor for worn-away spots where the door is scraping every time it is opened or closed.

Wood doors will react to changes in humidity levels, in particular, an outside or front door that is sticking.

Your door can also stick because the door frame is also wood and the hinges have become loose.

If you need to know how to fix a door that sticks due to humidity, contact us here at Milano Windows and Doors.

Wood Doors and Humidity

4 panel wooden front door

All wood absorbs water. There is already moisture inside the wood. As the humidity rises, the wood adsorbs more of it.

This causes the door to swell and expand. It’s quite natural so if you live in a humid climate or have an excessively high humidity level inside the home, your wooden furniture and doors will expand and take up more room.

When the humidity level is lowered, the door will go back down to its normal size. However, moisture can also cause wood to warp, and once that happens, it will remain that way.

If you are wondering how to fix a stuck door, you can use a dehumidifier in the summer months when the humidity is much higher. But it’s important to know that even a treated or painted door will still absorb water and expand.

Use a Hygrometer

double entry doors

Those who live in a climate with high humidity don’t often notice it after a while. But your wooden door will. If you have adapted to the level of humidity inside your home, you can use a hygrometer.

The humidity level is affected by other elements, as well, like temperature, air pressure, and even the size of your room. The hygrometer is a small instrument you can use to measure the level of humidity inside your house.

You can take it into each room and get a digital reading for the humidity. Rooms like your kitchen or bathroom will obviously have a higher rating.

If you are having problems with your front door sticking, take a reading close to it.

Trim Door Panel

white front glass door replacement

If you need to know how to fix a stuck door and you know that the door is the problem, then it can be trimmed to fit better. The door needs to be removed and taken to a place where it will be trimmed down.

Using sandpaper or a plane, the edges of the door can be trimmed down. This might seem like a simple task but it can be easy to take too much or not enough and the door can be even more uneven than it was.

If the door is swollen when you are trimming it, keep in mind that it will shrink back down to its normal size again once the humidity levels drop. Don’t take off too much when you are trimming it.

You may want to get a professional to do the job for you if you are not familiar with woodworking tools. If you can see where the door is sticking, you may be able to do the job on your own.

Foundation Settlement May be the Issue

Large Black Entrance Door

It is not uncommon for doors of all kinds throughout your home to stick if your foundation has shifted slightly. This happens when the soil has moved and the foundation has no support. 

It might only be a fraction of an inch but it can cause your doors to stick. However, if this is the problem, it will affect many doors, mostly on the same side of the house.

It can also cause your windows to stick, cupboard doors to stick or swing open, and they may be a noticeable slant to your floor. It’s important to have it inspected to find the actual cause of your doors sticking.

Contact Us

Milano Windows and Doors is an award-winning doors and windows company serving many homeowners across the GTA. We will repair or install your new doors and we offer a multitude of designs and styles. We can also do custom work if you have a unique dream door in mind.

At Milano Windows and Doors, we’re proud to serve Toronto and the GTA including North York, Etobicoke, Scarborough, Mississauga, Oakville, Vaughan, Whitby, Pickering, Richmond Hill and Oshawa

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