If you are installing a new thicker carpet, thicker underlay, or wood flooring you may find that your doors need trimming for the flooring to fit underneath.
There are several ways to do this:
- Remove the door from its hinges and cut it using a hand saw or circular saw.
- Cut it in place using a hand saw or circular saw.
- Use a special purpose door trimming saw.
I decided to trim mine using a door trimming saw. These are expensive to buy, and you aren’t going to use them much, so it can be a lot cheaper to hire them. I hired one for the day from HSS hire. Here is a link to the door trimming saw I hired for £36.84 (the prices on their website don’t include VAT).
I had to order it a week in advance as they said it was a very popular item and fully booked.
Here is what the saw looks like. It is a circular saw with a very thick enclosed blade. It is designed to be slid along a flat floor, and the 4 screws at the corners near the bottom allow the height of the blade to be modified.
The blade comes out of the front when you push the spring loaded handle forward. The amount the blade comes out is only just enough to cut a standard door, so you will have to keep it fully pushed forward to make the cut.
Each of the 4 height screws has measurements on it so it is easy to set the saw to the correct level.
There is a vacuum port to suck the sawdust away, but I found that my Dyson hose was the wrong size to connect to it. I got around this by using masking tape to connect the hose to the door trimmer.
To help prevent the bottom of the door from splintering I wrapped masking tape around it.
Then I started using the saw. First turning on the vacuum, then the saw. When it is at full speed you can begin cutting. You should check the instructions to make sure you cut in the correct direction. In the case of the saw I was using the cut had to be made left to right.
The saw is very noisy and even with the vacuum sucking away most of the sawdust there was still enough dust in the air to set off the room’s smoke alarm! Because the blade is enclosed and hidden away from your face it should be fairly safe to use, but you should still wear safety glasses in case you get a rogue flying splinter.
It took about 3 minutes to cut each door by sliding the saw slowly from left to right. I found that it won’t get close enough to the door frame to cut the very edge, so I had to do the final 1cm with a hand saw. I could then finish off by giving the edges a quick sand, and then repainting any bits where the paint had flaked off.
Even with the vacuum running there was still loads of sawdust on the floor. Here are some of the pieces that were cut off the three doors that I did.
It is still hard work to push the blade through the doors, but much easier and more accurate than using a hand saw.