Kicked-In Door [How to Repair/Fix]

Did someone kick in your door, and it is no longer working? Maybe your door is jamb or damaged. Don’t dismay. In this article, I’ll show you how to repair or fix a kicked-in door.

The usual way of repairing a kicked-in door jamb is to glue the damaged parts together. It will take a few steps to do this:

  1. Insert the end of a putty knife between the loose casing on the side of the doorknob.
  2. Remove the striker plate from the door.
  3. You need to push the splintered jamb back into its former position.

These are just the initial steps of the whole process. You may need to do additional repairs to make your door fully functioning again. What you should know is that you can fix your door.

Read on to learn more about how to repair a kicked-in door, some tips on how to do it so that you can restore your door to its original, fully functioning self.

Kicked-In Door – How to Repair / Fix 

Kicked-In Door

The door assembly consists of the door frame and the door itself. The door jamb in the door frame is the vertical part of the frame that stands or holds the top part of the door frame.

Usually, when someone forcefully kicks your door, you end up with a damaged door jamb. Of course, the door itself could be damaged, especially if it is already too old and full of cracks. But if the door is relatively new and strong, it will not give way just like that.

A Damaged Door Jamb Can Still Be Fixed

Worry not because it’s still possible to fix a damaged door jamb. The usual parts in the door jamb that give way when someone kicks the door open are the casing plates on the interior side of the door and the door jamb.

So, it is possible to repair a kicked-in door jamb by gluing its separated parts together. The door hinges are located in the door jamb. Meanwhile, the door jambs are the parts that hang the doors. A striker plate on the opposite door jamb also helps open, close, and lock the door.

When a door is forcefully kicked in, usually, the striker vertically splits one side of the door jamb for a few inches. The striker is forced out of the striker plate hole. And then the door is forcefully opened. The forceful action of kicking in also lifts the door casing.

Fixing Might Be Simple or Complicated Depending on the Damage

Fixing this problem can be complicated or straightforward. It depends on the damage that was done on the door jamb or the door itself. There are also different ways that carpenters use to repair the damage.

Repair Cost

The cost of repair will also depend on the damage and the work required to fix the problem. Usually, repair costs will range from a hundred dollars to several hundred dollars. There is no fixed amount because it depends on how much the carpenter charges for his time and the quantity and cost of the required repair materials.

The same thing is true for damaged garage doors. It may even be more expensive to repair garage doors because they have more parts than ordinary house doors. Garage doors usually have door springs, sensors, cables, electric motors, and many more.

Materials You Need for Repairing Kicked-in Door

kicked in front door

To fix a kicked-in door problem, prepare the tools and materials below:

  • Wood glue
  • Putty knife
  • Putty crayon
  • Screwdriver
  • Hammer
  • Chisel
  • Clamps
  • Diagonal pliers
  • Finish nails, 1 1/4-inch
  • Stain marker
  • Nailset
  • Replacement casing (optional)
  • Miter saw (optional)
  • Safety glass – you should wear this when you are working with wood to protect your eyes.

How to Repair a Kicked-in Door Jamb

You can now start fixing the kicked-in door jamb if all the tools and materials are on hand. Follow these steps:

1. Pull the Casing Out from the Door Jamb

Take the putty knife and insert its end between the loose casing on the side of the doorknob. It is usually located on the door’s interior side. Using your fingers and the putty knife, pull the case out from the door jamb.

Do it at the top of the casing where it is still nailed on. If you have a badly damaged case, throw it away. Get the diagonal plier and use it to pull the remaining nails out.

2. Remove the Plate If There’s a Crack

If there’s a crack or split that goes behind the striker plate, remove the plate. Use the screwdriver to unscrew the screws that hold the striker plate in its place and then pop it out of the mortise. However, if there is no damage on the striker plate, leave it there.

3. Remove Loose Splinters

If there is splintered wood in the door jamb, push them back into their original position. Remove any loose splinters, wood chips, or other debris. Use the tip of the putty knife to do this. Make sure that the two sides of the door jamb are fitted back tightly.

4. Apply Glue to All the Split or Cracked Areas

Carefully open the split sides of the door jamb. Use the blade of the putty knife to get a reasonable amount of glue. Apply this glue to all the split or cracked areas of the jamb. Insert the putty knife into the splits or cracks of the jamb. Continue doing this until all cracks and splits have glue. Then scrape off the excess glue on top of the splits and cracks.

5. Clamp the Jamb Together

Use clamps across the jamb where the cracks and splinters are located. Tighten the clamps until the cracks and splits let out the excess glue inside them. Clean them off. Allow the glue to dry for one hour.

6. Remove the Clamp After One Hour

After one hour, remove the clamps on the door jamb. Use the putty knife to remove any residual glue on the splits and cracks.

7. Clean the Jamb

Clean the mortise in the jamb using the end of the putty knife. If it was deformed, get the chisel and restore its clean edges. This will ensure that the striker plate will fit in just as before. Ensure that the hole in the plate is centered on the hole in the jamb. After seeing that all is ok, screw the striker plate on the jamb.

8. Nail the Casing Back Into Its Original Place

Nail the casing back into its original place. Get the hammer and use one 1/4-inch finishing nail to do this. If you have a deformed former casing, get a miter saw, set it at 45°, and cut a similar piece of wood. Then nail it on as the replacement.

9. Use a Nailset to Tap the Nails

Use a nailset to tap the nails underneath the casing surface. Apply a reasonable amount of putty on the holes. Use a putty crayon that matches the color of the wood. Then use the stain marker to put some color on the cracks and seams in the spots where the jamb was glued together.

Other Ways to Fix Kicked In Door Issues

fix kicked in door

Aside from the process described above, there are several other ways to fix kicked-in doors. The methods below are based on homeowners‘ experience:

Flip the Door

In this method, you have to flip the door. This means you will be using the hinged part of the door as the unhinged part. If you have a door that uses only two hinges instead of three, this should work:

  • Remove the door out of its hinges,
  • Flip it so that the part that has the door knob hole is now on the hinge side, and
  • Get a chisel and create two new mortises, one for the new door knob hole and another for the hinges on the new hinge side.

The door may not look pretty after repairing it, but this process will work as a temporary solution to your kicked-in door problem.

Kicked-in Door Repair for a Fancy Door

If you have a fancy door that has been kicked in, but you don’t want to replace it, there is still a way to fix it. Here is what a homeowner did to fix this problem:

  • Cut out the splintered or cracked spot in a rectangular shape,
  • Use an appropriate tool to drill and mortise out a 3/4-inch rectangular slot at the middle of the door. Use a chisel to finish the mortise,
  • Glue a 3/4-inch rectangular piece of plywood in this slot,
  • Glue another piece of pine wood or other piece of smooth wood so that it will appear flush with the surface of the door,
  • Use Bondo to fill in the gaps in the wood,
  • Sand the spot, then prime it and put a final coat of paint matching the door’s color, and
  • Get a lock set jig to drill out the required holes for the new lock and you are done.

This homeowner admitted that it took some effort and time to do this. But they can’t let go of their fancy door. So, to them, the work required is worth it.

Examine Which Part of the Door Assembly Was Damaged

Another homeowner says that it is wise to know first which part of the door was broken. Many things can be damaged in a door assembly. Is it the center of the door, the door jamb, or is it the locking part of the door?

This homeowner says that if it is the door frame, then your door’s damage is heavy:

  • You need to get a piece of the same wood material that is bigger than the damaged part,
  • Make the necessary cut outs on the door frame to fix the problem,
  • Do some woodworks on the new block of wood so it can fit the cut outs that you made on the door frame,
  • Repair the hardware if it is still possible. If not, replace it, and
  • Reinstall the repaired hardware, or install the new one.

If you have a damaged door’s body, this homeowner believes that the door is not strong in the first place. Or it may have already grown old. The best option is to replace the whole door with a new and stronger one.

Conclusion: Kicked-In Door – How to Repair/Fix

When a door is forcefully kicked in, the part that will be usually damaged is the door jamb. The common way of fixing a kicked-in door jamb is to glue the damaged parts together. Fixing it will involve several steps:

  1. Insert the end of a putty knife between the loose casing on the side of the doorknob.
  2. Remove the striker plate from the door.
  3. Push the splintered jamb back into its former position.

These steps are just a part of the whole process of repairing a kicked-in door. There are additional steps that you need to perform to restore the door to its former self. The important thing to know is: this door problem can be fixed.