Double doors can make a great statement in any part of a home. They can be used for front doors, patio doors, bedroom doors, and so much more! While double doors are beautiful, they also come with issues that single doors do not have, such as gaps in between the two doors.
To fix the gap between a set of double doors, you have a few options. To completely fix, replace, or re-install the hinges of the door as they can create a gap when loose. Alternatively, use an adhesive molding strip in the gap for an easy fix, or install a locking stile on the stationary door for a more finished look.
Knowing what to do about gaps in your double doors is super helpful, but it will be even more beneficial to understand how they happen, and the problems that come with them as well. Keep reading to learn more about gaps in double doors and how to fix them.
How Gaps Happen
Gaps between double doors are not always a problem when the doors are first installed. They might fit together very nicely when they’re originally added, but over time you notice that a gap has formed, leaving a space to see through the doors or to let bad weather in. A gap in double doors can cause a lot of problems, but how do they happen in the first place?
One cause of a new gap in a set of double doors is that the hinges have started coming loose. When the hinges come loose or start wearing down, they can cause the doors to droop at a slight angle. Even though it is slight, this angling can open up some pretty annoying, and pretty big gaps in double doors.
Another major cause of gaps in double doors is wood shrinking. It is common for wood to shrink in cold weather and low humidity. This can cause a gap to appear because both doors are a little bit smaller, including their frames. So when the wood shrinks, the gap will become pretty noticeable. You can check if this is the problem by waiting until spring and summer to see if the gap is fixed by then.
The final reason that double doors gaps appear is due to a new house settling. While it can seem like it might just be poor construction, sometimes a new house needs time to settle, and little things like gaps between double doors show up throughout the process.
Fixing the Hinges
We talked about how loose hinges, or old hinges, can cause the doors to angle themselves and create a gap. If this is the issue, replacing the hinges or re-installing them will be the solution to the problem!
If the hinges are getting old, you should replace them entirely. Find hinges that are sturdy and that are a similar, or the same, style to the old hinges. This will help them fit with the doors better. New hinges will keep the doors upright and they should help close the gap in the doors by a large margin.
The other option for hinges is to just reinstall them. Sometimes the hinges might have just been a bit loose and that is causing the doors to have less support. Under these circumstances, a gap forms. If the hinges are relatively new, try tightening the screws on the hinges so that they are more tightly flush against the wall. This should create the support that the doors need.
Fixing with a Molding Strip
The next option to fix the door gap is to install a molding strip. These are easy to find, relatively cheap, and super easy to install. They are typically made with an adhesive on the back so that you can just stick them wherever they are needed. Cut the molding strip to the correct size (the height of the door in this case) and then stick the adhesive side to the side of the stationary door so that it fills the gap. Rub along the adhesive to get rid of any air bubbles and you’re finished!
Fixing with a Stile
A locking stile is a final way to fix a double door gap and it is much more professional-looking once it is installed (especially when compared to a molding strip). This is highly recommended for exterior doors. The stile is a wooden beam attached to the stationary door, it covers any gaps in between the doors, helps create better insulation, and looks very nice.
To install a stile, it is best to get a professional to help install it as it can be quite difficult. Overall, the stile will be screwed into the stationary door so that the moving door will lock into it. It covers the gap on the outside, instead of just focusing on the area in between the doors. This is the nicest-looking option, but the other options function in the same way.
Problems Gaps Cause
Gaps in double doors are not something that you should just leave alone, especially if they are exterior doors that connect the interior and exterior of your house. Here are some of the big problems that a gap in double doors can cause.
The first, and most obvious problem is that there is a space that someone could look through when the doors are shut. This is a particularly pressing issue when the doors lead to a bathroom or bedroom. These areas are supposed to be very private and if another person can see inside when the doors are shut, you might feel very exposed. This problem can be kind of scary, especially if you live with roommates or have children.
Another very big problem is that air and bugs can easily get in and out. This is especially relevant to exterior double doors. When there is a gap in a double door, there is a breach of insulation. This makes it hard to keep the outside air outside, and the inside air inside. This can cause more problems because your electricity bill might go up when you can’t seem to get your home to be warm in the winter or cool in the summer. This is because all of that air conditioning and heating is escaping through that gap in your exterior doors.
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