View Full Version : Stripping and Refinishing Wood Doors
08-26-2006, 10:53 AM
I want to strip an interior wood door, and I don't want to do it myself. I don't tolerate paint stripping chemicals well. It has two panels and lots of lead paint layers, probably fir, circa 1916. Does anyone know where in the Boston area I can find someone to strip the door for me? It's for my children's bathroom, so I want to do this before they are old enough to complain that they have no privacy. Thanks much.
08-27-2006, 04:58 PM
Can you consider simply purchasing a replacement door? Stripping a door like that sounds pretty extreme.
08-27-2006, 08:54 PM
You're joking, right?
Actually she is not joking, if you want to strip your floor you need to get in touch a company in that area. You might have to do some research with the "phone book ". I have found a product that works really well for my aplication and that is Peel away http://www.dumondchemicals.com/ You could contact these folks and see if they have a 'user' in your area.
It is expencive and I do not know they area that you are talking about, but they have used it in schools. I myself did not find the oder irritating of offensive. Check out the web site and give them a call the fellow I talked to was very helpful and informative. Good luck.
08-28-2006, 08:46 AM
Peel Away 1 sounds like a great idea. I have recommended Dumond Chemical products many times for masonry cleaning and restoration. I've been reading the MSDS and application guide. It looks great. Thank you.
I sent this request for help because the local "phone book" didn't yield much information. I'm an Architect specializing in sustainable/green design and not interested in sending a solid wood door to the landfill just because it has a bit of paint on it. A new custom stile and rail wood door (to match the existing) costs over $600.
08-28-2006, 01:12 PM
No, I'm serious. It is MUCH easier to replace a door than to strip it and refinish it. Interior doors are not very expensive and are carried by all home centers.
I think it depends on where you live as to what is much easier. We have a small construction company on the coast of Maine and we frequently save old doors interior and exterior to be stripped and reused. There is a place where I bring these doors and depending on their size it runs about $125- $300 per door. If there is such a place in your area I would recommend this alternative. Here are the pros and cons of this route as I see them;
-If it is put back in the same spot the old door, has already been fitted (although it is surprising how much an old door can swell up after the paint is removed)
-often old solid wood doors are of a higher quality than you can buy at a home center unless you want to spend much more than the cost of having it stripped
-if you bring an old door to a place that is set up for production stripping they will deal with any strip waste in an appropriate manner, and it won't be any more work than getting rid of the old door and installing a new one.
-sometimes the old paint soaks in and leaves a white film even after being stripped. This is not a problem if the door is going to be painted.
-you are keeping a part of the history of your home intact.
If for some reason there is not a place to bring your old door to be professionally stripped I would not recommend doing it yourself. You don't want to expose yourself or your children to the stripping by products. I have heard about incentives in the boston area for the reusing and recycling of construction material. An architectural salvage yard might be of some help in finding a stripper or getting rid of your door in an appropriate manner if you decide to go with a new one.
09-06-2006, 11:59 AM
Thanks for your input. Your list of pros and cons is excellent. I have finally found a professional stripper near Boston and will be sending the door out in a few weeks. Their estimate is $240 - 320, probably high due to the cost of labor in Boston.
They also raised the possibility that my door's original paint may be milk-based, which is apparently a real bear to remove. Some neighbors with a slightly older homes do have milk paint on their woodwork.
The professionals are not very keen on the Peel-Away products, having seen lots of failed DIY projects come to their shop. They say it strips unevenly and is difficult to neutralize. Then again, I don't know if those people followed directions properly.
Thanks again for your help.
I'm glad that you were able to find someone. I figured there must be a place in the Boston area. I am glad that you are going that route. I live on an island off the coast of Maine and since the landfill out here was capped about eight years ago we have had to transport all our waste off island. I have a collection of old doors I have culled from our dump and our renovation projects. A certain type of client is really happy to pick out an old door and send it to be refurbished at a minimal cost and I am happy to see the doors used.
I agree about possible problems with the DIY products.
09-07-2006, 04:31 AM
You are very fortunate to live in the same area as the This Old HOuse producers. They have used local strippers a lot. They have a resource guide and a question and answer forum. You might want to post your question there...and even send an email to "Ask This Old House"...maybe Tom will come out and do it for you. I am serious...it is exactly the question that will have a univeral appeal. Here is the overall site address: http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh
09-07-2006, 06:24 PM
I am happy to see that you found a solution to your problem. Should someting like this come up in the future, you might consider one of the local schools. The shop teacher may need a project for one of his or her students, especially one that lacks the funds to purchase materials for their own project. You just need to discuss the matter in detail with the teacher first, letting them know about the various layers and types of paint they may find.
10-10-2006, 02:54 AM
hi, have you considered taking the door to a place that dips wooden furniture, doors etc. All you have to do is take the door off & transport it to a company that proffesionally dips & strips furniture. All the best with it.
10-24-2006, 11:44 AM
To safetymom - can you tell me where you are getting your door stripped. I live in the Boston area and need to have my front door stripped.