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Historic Preservation - Technical Procedures

Spectitle:

Reparing Balkiness Or Binding Of Pocket Doors

Procedure code:

0821004R

Source:

Hspg Prepared For Nps - Sero

Division:

Doors And Windows

Section:

Wood Doors

Last Modified:

04/11/2014

Details:

Reparing Balkiness Or Binding Of Pocket Doors



REPAIRING BALKINESS OR BINDING OF A POCKET DOOR


PART 1---GENERAL

1.01 SUMMARY

    A.   This procedure includes guidance on repairing balkiness
         or binding of a pocket door.  This includes work on a
         door that may be stuck in its pocket, that binds when
         being moved, or that resists movement or is balky when
         being moved.  It may also be applied to pocket doors that
         will not slide completely into the pocket.  Work may also
         require removing the doors and replacing the rollers.

         1.   A pocket door that is stuck may be the result of
              the door being nailed in place, debris clogging the
              door track, warped studs in the pocket, or a
              damaged floor track.  The door may also be warped,
              off the floor track, or off the top guide inside
              the pocket.  These procedures can also be applied
              to a door that will not slide completely into
              pocket.

         2.   Balkiness in top hung pocket doors usually results
              from rollers that need oiling.  Balkiness may be
              eliminated by exposing the rollers so that they may
              be lubricated.

         3.   Binding is usually caused by vibration or house
              settlement, a loose or warped stop molding, or
              warped door.

         4.   A door that is balky or will not move at all may
              result from disconnected, broken, missing, or loose
              rollers.  In this situation, the door will need to
              be removed and the rollers repaired or replaced.

         5.   A pocket door binds on track, balks, or travels
              noisily is often a result of debris inside pocket,
              floor settlement, or rollers that are dirty, rusty,
              misaligned, broken or missing.

    B.   Other pocket door repair procedures include the
         following:

         1.   For guidance on repairing out of plumb pocket
              doors, see 08210-05-R.

         2.   For guidance on repairing pocket door hardware
              including tracks and stops, see 08210-06-R.

    C.   See 01100-07-S for general project guidelines to be
         reviewed along with this procedure.  These guidelines
         cover the following sections:

         1.   Safety Precautions

         2.   Historic Structures Precautions

         3.   Submittals

         4.   Quality Assurance

         5.   Delivery, Storage and Handling

         6.   Project/Site Conditions

         7.   Sequencing and Scheduling

         8.   General Protection (Surface and Surrounding)

         These guidelines should be reviewed before performing
         this procedure and should be followed, when applicable,
         along with recommendations from the Regional Historic
         Preservation Officer (RHPO).

1.02 DEFINITIONS

    A.   Top-hung pocket doors are unique because of their
         hardware.

         1.   There are two types of hanging hardware for pocket
              doors:

              a.   Single roller type: Has one roller (front and
                   back) and makes use of one metal track.

              b.   Side by side roller type: Has two rollers
                   (front and back) that move along on matching
                   wood tracks on either side of the roller
                   assembly.

         2.   Unlike pocket doors with a bottom track, top hung
              doors have a retractable metal or wood finger
              mounted at rear edge of door called a rear stop.
              This stop must be released for door to clear pocket
              for repair.

1.03 SYSTEM DESCRIPTION

    A.   A pocket door assembly in good working condition is free
         from decay and structurally sound.  It is effortlessly
         smooth sliding and properly aligned.  The pocket doors
         stop precisely when closed and are easily retrieved from
         pocket.  The door latches crisply and should not rattle
         between latch and stops when closed.


PART 2---PRODUCTS

2.01 Manufacturers and Suppliers

            A.  - Stanley Hardware Co.    www.stanleyhardware.com

                 - Stanley Commercial Hardware     www.stanleycommercialhardware.com

                 - Pocket Door Products Co.    www.pocketdoorproducts.com

                 - Ball & Ball Co.      www.ballandball-us.com

                 - Lee Valley Co. http://www.leevalley.com/en/hardware/WhatsNew.aspx?ap=1

                 - Hafele     http://www.hafele.com/us/products/sliding-folding-french-door-pocket-door-hardware-barn-door-hardware.asp     

                 - Architectural Resource Center    www.architecturalresourcecenter.com

                 - Johnson Hardware   http://www.johnsonhardware.com/sdindex.htm

          or and RHPO approved equal.


2.01 MATERIALS

    A.   Wood block and broom handle to make clearance guide

    B.   Replacement plaster and lath (if wall must be removed)

    C.   Wood wedges and shims

    D.   Finish nails

    E.   Aerosol lubricant with plastic spray nozzle such as WD40, Tri-Flo,
         or approved equal.

    F.   Replacement rollers

    G.   Cleaning solvent for metal rollers

    H.   Cloths for wiping solvent

    I.   Household oil

    J.   Replacement sheave and roller and wood blocking (if
         needed)

2.02 EQUIPMENT

    A.   Claw hammer

    B.   Drum rasp attached to drill

    C.   Broom or vacuum with long handled attachment

    D.   Pliers

    E.   Saw to trim old floorboards (if needed)

    F.   Flashlight

    G.   Screwdriver

    H.   Hammer

    I.   Tools for removing molding (if needed)

    J.   Carpenter's tools to remove casing and re-secure
         fasteners

    K.   Set-up for laying door in horizontal position during
         repair


PART 3---EXECUTION

3.01 EXAMINATION

    A.   To determine roller type, shine flashlight up into track
         opening above door.  See Section 1.02 Definitions, above,
         for descriptions of roller types.

3.02 PREPARATION

    A.   Protection:  Mask or cover adjacent surfaces and
         permanent equipment during repair and maintenance.
         Coverings must be adhered without adhesive tape or nails.
         DO NOT USE impervious sheeting that produces
         condensation.

3.03 ERECTION, INSTALLATION, APPLICATION

    A.   For a Door Nailed Shut In-Place:

         1.   Inspect for toenailing at door edge and for stop
              piece nailed into track at top or bottom.

         2.   Carefully remove nails and/or stop.

    B.   For Warped Studs in Pocket:

         1.   If stud in question is one nearest to opening,
              carefully push it back using a wedge against door.
              Protect door surface and do not force.

         2.   If binding of stud(s) occurs deeper in pocket, it
              will be necessary to go through wall to free the
              door.

              NOTE:  THIS MAY CAUSE UNNECESSARY DAMAGE TO
              SURROUNDING MATERIALS.  OBTAIN RHPO APPROVAL.

              a.   Make a clearance gauge, cut a block of wood to
                   size of width of opening between door and
                   frame.

              b.   Attach wood to a broom handle.

              c.   Stick clearance gauge into socket to determine
                   the location of the offending stud.

              d.   Remove wall surface on side of problem, if
                   known. Remove less conspicuous side if
                   unknown.

              e.   Shave offending stud with drum rasp attached
                   to drill.

              f.   Repair wall surface as required.

    C.   For Debris Clogging Track:

         1.   Begin by rocking door slowly out of pocket.

         2.   Support door while scraping underneath to clear
              debris.

         3.   While door is out of pocket, clean track in pocket
              with broom or vacuum with long handled attachment.

    D.   For a Damaged or Faulty Floor Track:

         1.   If track is bent and battered, realign with hammer
              and pliers.

         2.   If floor boards have shifted so close as to bind
              the track, carefully trim back floor boards or
              replace with narrower boards that match wood
              species, age, and grain orientation.

         3.   If track is misaligned in the opening between
              floorboards, take track up and relay it correctly
              in the center of opening.  Shim under track if it
              is not level.  Then, adhere realigned track to
              floor.

         4.   If track is misaligned inside door pocket:

              a.   Remove metal stop in top of door frame.

              b.   Slide door all the way across opening. Try to
                   work from outside straightening and tacking
                   track in place inside pocket.

              c.   If this is not possible, then wall surface
                   must be removed to gain access to the pocket.
                   OBTAIN RHPO APPROVAL.

    E.   For a Door that has Jumped the Floor Track:  Lift and
         rock door back onto track.

    F.   For a Door that has Become Detached from the Top Guide:

         1.   Wiggle door to get it back on track.

         2.   Use a metal rule against top guide to ease door out
              of pocket.  

         3.   If top guide appears warped, try to shim warp back
              into alignment.  

              NOTE:  WALL SURFACE AROUND AREA MAY HAVE TO BE
              REMOVED TO REPAIR TOP GUIDE.  OBTAIN RHPO APPROVAL.

    G.   For Binding Due to Vibration or Settlement:

         NOTE:  THIS PROBLEM USUALLY AFFECTS THE HEIGHT OF THE
         DOOR AND MAY BE REPAIRED BY ADJUSTING THE ROLLER HEIGHT.

         1.   If door is too low and dragging floor, shim under
              door to keep it 1/4" above floor; raise door by
              turning adjustment screw at base of roller
              assembly.

         2.   If door is too high, turn screw in opposite
              direction from that used to raise door.

    H.   For a Loose or Warped Stop Molding:  

         1.   If merely loose, re-nail properly.

         2.   If warped, remove and attempt re-nailing.

         3.   If molding cannot be straightened, it may have to
              be replaced (see 06440-05-R for guidance on
              repairing warps in wood wall ornament).

    I.   For a Warped Door:

         NOTE:  A WARPED DOOR IS NEARLY IMPOSSIBLE TO REPAIR.

         1.   Move stop molding to accommodate warp in door.

         2.   Loosen by gently rocking the door while pulling out
              of pocket.

         3.   If this does not work, carefully push back studs
              nearest the opening by using a wedge against the
              door.  PROTECT THE DOOR SURFACE.

         4.   If it still does not move, it will be necessary to
              go through the wall and loosen the door by
              inserting shims between door and studs.

         5.   Once door is freed and is still salvageable, try
              shaving the studs in the pocket at the point of
              bending.  

         6.   If the door is badly warped, it will need to be
              replaced.

    J.   For Balkiness or Doors that Resist Movement:

         NOTE:  TO PROPERLY EXPOSE ROLLERS, DOOR MUST BE
         COMPLETELY REMOVED FROM POCKET.

         1.   Release rear stop by pulling door out as far as it
              will go.

         2.   Insert screwdriver or piece of stiff cardboard and
              flip up stop.  

         3.   Proceed by pulling door completely from pocket.

         4.   Oil rollers using an aerosol lubricant with plastic
              extension nozzle.

         5.   Slide door back into pocket and reattach stop.

         6.   For Side by Side Rollers:

              a.   If door has side by side rollers hung on a
                   wooden track, there is usually an access panel
                   and removable track section.

              b.   Locate access panel and remove track section.

              c.   Reach through hole above door to unscrew
                   flange that attaches roller assembly to top of
                   door. Remove roller through access panel.

              d.   Remove other roller accordingly.

              e.   If two doors must be removed, the second door
                   can be removed by following the same
                   procedure, on the other side.

              f.   If no access panel is found,

                   1)   Remove stop, jamb, and wood track on one
                        side.

                   2)   If roller still cannot be unscrewed,
                        remove other side of upper track.



         7.   For single roller type:

              a.   Remove casement molding, stop, and jamb on
                   side opposite track mounting.

              b.   Slip out door and roller assembly intact.

              c.   If roller cannot clear track, it must be
                   unscrewed from top of door.

         8.   If rollers or track are loose or disconnected, re-
              secure fasteners.

         9.   If track or rollers are broken or missing, they
              must be replaced (see below).

         10.  If rollers are dirty or rusty, clean and oil them.

    J.   To Repair or Replace Rollers:

         1.   Remove doors.  (This will probably require two
              people).  One person must push up on door while
              other person swings door out from bottom.

         2.   If door is stuck at top, remove stop molding on
              less conspicuous side.

    K.   If rollers are misaligned, broken, or missing they must
         be replaced.  Choose rollers suitable for the weight of
         the door.  Use wood blocking as required in mortise for
         fitting new sheave.

         NOTE:  NEW ROLLERS ARE USUALLY SMALLER.  

                             END OF SECTION
 


pocket doors, repair of pocket doors, balkiness of pocket doors, binding of pocket doors