Wouldn’t it be nice to have the dining room opening directly into the garden on a balmy summer’s day? What a good idea except you only have a window, and climbing in and out through it is hardly everybody’s idea of fun. Well then, why not convert the window to a set of french doors instead? After all, Door Fitters in London do this sort of thing every day.
o Call in a supplier to measure up, quote and make up a new set of doors for you, and do nothing else yourself, until these arrive and have been checked for size. They should be exactly the same width as the existing window, unless that is you are looking for a whole lot more work to do.
o Empty the room completely. Remove one opening window pane so you can climb in and out through the opening. Secure the inter-leading door and mask around it. Also mask around the doors of any cupboards and protect anything else appropriate from dust.
o Remove the window and its frame completely, being extra careful not to disturb any plaster. If you notice any cracks in the wall above the opening immediately prop it, and seek expert advice. Changing windows into doors is a job only for the brave. That’s why so many British homeowners get Door Fitting Quotes on Mr-Skill instead.
o Mark perpendicular lines from the left and right bottom sides of the existing opening down to floor level, on both sides of the wall. Check and double-check these carefully. Cut through these lines with an angle grinder, working alternatively from the inside and the outside, until you can see light shine right through. Do your best to cut square with the wall, because this will make the rest of your task far easier.
o Break out the wall using a large hammer. The masonry will be resting on the damp course and may even come out in a single piece, so take care it does not fall on precious children, tools and dogs. Remove the rubble. Tidy up the opening. Clean up the room. The dirty work is done.
o Remove the french doors from the window frame (if pre-fitted) and offer the frame up to the opening. It should be a close fit, but not a tight one. Wedge it in position and check that it is vertical, plumb, level and square. Use more wedges to adjust it until everything is perfect. Get this wrong, and the doors won’t close properly.
o Attach the frame permanently to the wall with plugs and screws. Remember to drive them in the last few turns by hand, in case they need to come out later to make a change. Then hang your doors, making tiny adjustments as you go along until everything is perfect. Install the locks and handles. Your home is secure again, and you didn’t need to Find a Door Fitter either (although you could have on Mr-Skill). You can even open up the inter-leading door again to receive a well-deserved cup of tea.
All that’s left to do is to tidy up the inside rendering, touch up with paint and seal around the frame outside with silicone. It’s nice when a job like this comes together relatively easily. Won’t the neighbours be surprised…