November 11, 2014

One down…

One still to go. I have a small list of jobs that I need to complete so I’m totally prepared for Winter and once I’ve worked my way through it, I can relax for the year. Today I tackled the work that I needed to do on my back door, leaving the front one still to do.

Sorting out the doors is at the top of the list because in the usual French way for old buildings, neither of my doors had a threshold piece across its bottom and both just opened straight to the outdoors. This meant that for the back door especially, when rain drove against it, the rain just ran straight down and into the room under the bottom of the door.

Water can also enter under the kitchen door, but only when the rain is so torrential that a small river is created outside it, the level of which can at times rise above the bottom of the door if there are so many leaves etc outside that the channel that allows the water to run away is blocked. However, the gap under the kitchen door is big enough to allow quite large insects unrestricted access to the warmth and comfort of my kitchen, and at this time of the year I’m fed up with having to keep catching and chucking out large, black cockroaches. All part of the fun of rural French life, I suppose, but avoidable with a threshold piece across the bottom of the door frame.

So today I did the necessary work on the back door. To be honest, the French don’t seem to be very much into painting and like much of the wood and paintwork on many old French buildings, the doors on my house are in a bit of a poor state. The back door in particular is a bit tatty and rotten along its bottom and instead of replacing a piece of the decorative beading on its outside that had gone a bit rotten, someone in the past has just tried to nail it back on again and slap filler on it.

But as I intend at sometime in the future to replace the back door and windows with sliding ‘patio’ type doors, I’m not that worried as that and the work I did today should be only temporary fixes. Here’s a shot from inside showing the back door and door frame with the new weatherboard and threshold piece in place.

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Next, some shots from outside showing the new weatherboard. You can also see what I mean about the rotten beading, and if I get time, I might get another piece from Les Briconautes and replace it later on to make the door look at least a little bit tidier.

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Finally, here’s a shot with the door closed. I just hope that the work I’ve done has the desired effect and that I’ll be able to sleep easy when the rain begins to lash down later on, knowing that it’ll all be staying outside and not flowing into my lounge along the channels between the tiles

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I hope that I’ll be able to do a similar job on the back door tomorrow, but it’ll be a little bit more tricky because of the levels involved and also because someone at some time has fitted a draught excluder which is now totally ineffective and will be a pain to get off without damaging the door itself. Anyway, I’ll just have to see how I get on.