How to Trim a Door that Rubs the Floor

Sticky, squeaky doors that sag can do serious damage to your floor. Sometimes a door may sag simply because screws holding the door to its hinges have loosened, and a quick tightening with a screwdriver brings the door back into true. Replacing the screw on the hinge plate closest to the door casing with a screw long enough to go through the jamb and into the wall framing can also draw the door up enough to clear the floor. Neither simple fix works, you need to remove the door for more drastic measures.

Door With Minor Sagging

A doors that does not open or close smoothly can damage flooring.

Step 1

Pull the pin from the bottom hinge, then the middle and top, to remove the door.  Be ready to catch the door as you remove the top pin.

Set the pins aside in a safe place. 

Step 2

Lay the door out flat on a pair of sawhorses.  Examine the door to discover the cause of the problem is.

The door may be uneven, have a part of the veneer chipped off and scraping the floor, or a metal kick plate become partially dislodged and fall lower than the door edge.  Where there are pieces of veneer chipping off, simply sand those away, or reset a metal kick plate that has slipped down below the door edge.

Step 3

Shave off the part of the bottom of the door that is sticking, but can still open and close, with a plane.  Generally, you can see wear in the paint where it has rubbed against the floor to determine where you need to apply the plane.

Sand and repaint if necessary. 

Step 4

Simply sand the area down with an electric sander, using a coarse-grit sandpaper, if the door only barely hits the floor.  Repaint afterwards if the paint chips off.

Step 5

Replace the door on its hinges and check its swing.  Remove and re-plane if necessary.

Door with Major Sagging

Step 1

Lay a length of wood against the floor next to the door that is as long as the face of the door and about 1/4 inch high. 

Step 2

Trace along the top edge of the wood with a pencil to transfer the 1/4-inch gap to the bottom of the door. 

Step 3

Remove the door from its hinges and lay it flat on a pair of sawhorses. 

Step 4

Attach the piece of wood to the door with a C-clamp on each end, so the straight edge is alligned with the top edge of the line you just drew on the door -- the bottom edge of the door should be clear. 

Step 5

Cut off the bottom edge of the door with a circular saw on the scribed line, using the wood piece as a guide to ensure a straight edge.  Rehang the door and check its swing.

Things You Will Need

  • Sawhorses
  • Plane
  • Sandpaper
  • Electric sander
  • 1/4-inch deep piece of wood
  • 2 C-clamps
  • Circular saw


  • A partner makes removing and replacing a door safer and easier.
  • Use a screwdriver and hammer to dislodge hinge pins if necessary.

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