Period property houses are bestowed with utmost significance in the UK, as a heritage from the past that must be preserved to go on into the future. However, this fact alone means that these properties have had their fair share of time in the world, and so they may be filled with a few issues here and there. If you are wondering whether you should try restoring your period front door on your own, then check out the step-by-step guide below and find out.
First things first: Determine the type of period door you have
Research a little bit on what your house’s architecture is, and most likely you would come across what type of door goes with it. In the UK, the most popular types of period properties are Georgian, Victorian, and Edwardian styles. These mostly feature a panelled wood front door, sometimes decorated with lovely stained or clear glass panels. Knowing what type of door it is would let you stick as close to the materials it was made with as possible, to keep its features even when changing its overall look.
You might also want to check out: Doors and what types go with most buildings
Restoring your period front door
After doing your research, you can now start restoring your period front door. Follow the steps below to achieve the best possible results.
- Remove your door from its hinges. The best way to do restoration tasks on your door is to remove it from its hinges and lay it flat on sawhorses. This will give you better access to all the door parts. Remove other non-wood fixtures on your door such as doorknobs, latches, etc.
- Start with the frame. Scrape off the paint by using a heat gun to help remove it from the wood. Older doors typically use paint with lead in it, so remember to wear a mask and gloves when working with your door’s paint. Sand the frame with medium-grit sandpaper. Prime and paint it your desired colour but preferably close to its original style. Follow the same instructions when removing paint from the door itself.
- Check for rotten parts by knocking on the door with a chisel or hammer. Rotten sections are typically crumbly. If you come across a rotten section, use your chisel to carve out all the rotten parts until you expose only the good wood. Dry the exposed wood with your heat gun and fill it with wood filler. After the filler has completely dried out, sand your door down.
- Use wood filler for other parts you want to fill in and sand down the uneven surfaces.
- Prime your door with around two coats of primer, and then paint after fully dried. Remember to use painters tape to keep the paint off of surfaces like glass. Use exterior paint to help protect your door from harsh weather conditions and UV rays as well.
- Put back all the fixtures and place the door back in its frame.
There you have it, a completely restored period front door! If you realise that this is not to your calibre, or that it is simply too much to do, consider calling a specialist that can help you restore your door to its former glory!
You might also be interested in: How much does it cost to fix a door?
Wooden Window and Door Specialist
This article was written on behalf of The Wooden Door Company by Pieter Boyce. Pieter has an intense passion for English Architectural history and has been specialising in the conservation of original wooden windows and doors for decades. His exceptional knowledge of timber windows and doors, both listed or non-listed, is attributed to his hands-on approach to learning all aspects of the complete restoration of original features as well as having personally surveyed thousands of items throughout his long tenure as a head surveyor for one of the largest window and door restoration companies in the UK. He now runs a boutique wooden window and door consultancy and fervently champions the retention of original windows and doors. To learn more of Pieter’s services, visit his website at www.boultonboyce.co.uk.