Some background before my question:

I had a bad installer for my exterior door that faces the backyard. We are no longer in touch because of this and other bad jobs he did for me.

Moving on, I have two issues which I'd like to address in order to complete the door.

In order of priority:

  1. Door Sweep: The door was installed unevenly in terms of the jams, and you can see from my pictures that there is a bigger gap on one side of the door bottom than the other. A downward slope, if you will. I'm willing to live with this, but I need to understand what's the best door bottom/sweep/etc to put in there. As it stands now, cold air loves to rush in and I am temporarily covering it with a blanket. The 32'' door did come with one, but it's missing in action for now. My concern with the sweeps I saw at home depot was that I barely have any room to work with before the bottom of the door hits the threshold (As you can see in the pic), so what do I do in that scenario? Can someone please link me a sweep they would recommend knowing the bottom of the door and threshold are almost touching?

  2. Transition piece into the laminate - I saw T-molding and 'Reducer' moldings at Home Depot as well, but neither seem applicable here where the wood ends and the door threshold starts. The gap is less than an inch between the two, around 3/8 of an inch. Advice on how to address the gap?

2 Answers 2


If this was an interior door I would say just live with it but since it is an exterior door I think you need to have it reinstalled.


  • The biggest is that the threshold should be at most a minimal bump to your house. This is just odd and a tripping hazard. There is really no way to fix this. You in theory could cut off the head of the threshold but...

  • The gap underneath the door is just way too big. So even if you could cut a 1/2" off the threshold, this would just make your issue worse. You can install an extension on the door here and they make some great rubber ones that will form to the gap but this doesn't look great even if it works. And this gap at the bottom is just inviting all bugs in your area into your nice home.

  • The gap on the bolt side is way too big. You can add weather stripping but it will require so much that it won't look great. Also since this is the opened side you will be replacing it constantly. I don't want to focus on this too much but with a gap that big it would be pretty easy (by force or pushing lock) to open from the outside.

  • The door isn't true. A slight slant will eventually have even more issues and may compound the other 3.

If I were to guess this guy left some of the existing "subfloor" under the door frame. And it probably wasn't even. This jacked your frame up higher. Which means the sides are higher... The threshold was installed too high too. The thing about this is there isn't a fix. If there is, it is shady and ruins other aspects of your house. You have one glaring problem, the door is installed wrong. Take off the trim, cut out the door and have it reinstalled. A good handyman can have everything back together in 2-3 hours max.

  • Hi. Thanks for the feedback. I actually just realized my 'overall picture' in the post has the door cracked a little bit open; my mistake. It doesn't seem though that your answer would change if I showed you the door closed. You seem pretty firm that the door needs to be reinstalled, correct? It doesn't seem there is any molding that would fit such a small area either. You seem to be saying once removed, I need a new threshold that doesn't step upwards etc. I also find the threshold to be a little annoying and yes I have tripped over it. New picture - imgur.com/VizPeGW
    – amalik
    Commented Jan 5, 2017 at 5:34
  • Your door is installed too high. Meaning the frame of the door - not the trim - is installed too high including your threshold. I think your door is fine as is your threshold for the door, they both just need to be installed lower.
    – DMoore
    Commented Jan 5, 2017 at 8:49

The first step would be to check to see if the jambs are plumb (straight up and down, both left-right and forward-back). If this is not the case, the door frame needs to be re-set w/ shims and screwed into adjacent studs. Door sweeps tend to tear more easily if the bolt side is lower than the hinge side.

If the frame is square and plumb, then the hinges tend to be the culprit in causing uneven spacing along a given side. Check to see if the frame and door were routed, to accept each hinge, evenly and equally with the other hinges. Also check to see if all the hinges are exactly the same. Hinge plates should be set even with the surface of the routed-out frame and routed-out door to prevent increased gaps on the hinge side.

If the spacing around the door is even along any given side but uneven when one side is compared to another then the door isn't the same shape as the door frame. Door stop trim (ie. a strip of quarter-round molding or a strip of finish-grade lathe) can help close a gap on the bolt side. But, if the gap is too large for the bolt to sufficiently penetrate the frame and stud, it's best to build-out the hinge side of the frame rather than the bolt side (one wants the bolt to pass through both the frame and into the stud).

  • I actually had the first pic with the door slightly cracked open by mistake; I took a new pic -- imgur.com/VizPeGW
    – amalik
    Commented Jan 5, 2017 at 5:39
  • See @ DMoore's answer. Whatever weather stripping or door sweep you install to cover the entire gap at the hinges will repeatedly tear because of the greater stresses on it along the bolt side. The threshold is a trip hazard. Commented Jan 5, 2017 at 11:47

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