Refinishing Doors On-site

What to do when doors in your building get damaged so badly that cleaning and touch-up doesn't help? WMS has developed methods for stripping and refinishing doors on-site with minimal down time for you.


CWS has refinished numerous doors over the years at 1600 Viceroy in Dallas Doors refinished for VarTek
CWS has refinished wood doors on-site for Blue Cross Blue Shield, utilizing an on-site engineering shop as spray booth Doors refinished for Blue Cross
CWS has refinished numerous wood doors on-site for Stone Tower, using a section of the parking garage as a spray booth Doors refinished for Stone Tower, Dallas
CWS refinished over 100 wood doors on-site and in shop for The Sorrento Luxury Condominiums in Dallas Doors refinished for Sorrento Luxury Condos
We refinished numerous wood doors for 3030 Bryan Street Lofts condominiums, often changing colors to suit prospective buyers, using the parking garage as a spray booth Doors refinished for 3030 Bryan Street Lofts

What to do when doors in your building get damaged so badly that cleaning and touch-up doesn't help?

Sometimes the answer is to refinish, rather than replace. This usually depends on the replacement cost of the door. For comparative purposes, the typical cost of cleaning, polishing and touching-up doors in volume is around $30/door. Refinishing the doors generally costs about $400 for one side, $750 for both sides. Since higher-quality doors can cost $1,400 and more to replace, refinishing the door may be a viable option.

About the refinishing process . . .

Refinishing a door requires that the door be removed to a location suitable for refinishing: Room to work, plenty of light and good ventilation are essential. The old finish is first chemically removed from the door. Then, repairs are made and the door is sanded in preparation for re-staining. Stains are applied to match the original color. The clear-coat finishes are then re-applied and allowed to cure. Finally, the door is re-hung.

This refinishing process requires a minimum three-day window:

    Day One:
  • Remove door to finishing area
  • Remove hardware from door
  • Strip away old finish
  • Make repairs to door, and prep for stain
  • Apply stain, allow to cure overnight
    Day Two:
  • Spray seal coats of a durable finish
  • Tint and tone to match original color if necessary
  • Spray multiple top-coats of a durable finish
  • Allow finish to cure overnight
    Day Three:
  • Replace hardware
  • Re-install door

How can I do without my doors for three days?

When we pick up items for refinishing in one of our finish shops, we require a minimum two-week window for returning the items. As most building managers cannot do without their doors for two to three weeks, CWS often performs on-site refinishing which occurs over a weekend, when tenant occupancy in the building is low. Our method is to remove the doors on Friday afternoon, and perform the "Day One" work on Friday evening. By mid-day Sunday, the doors are re-hung and ready for use Monday morning.

Areas typically used for on-site refinishing . . .

We have used an empty floor of the building, or a large empty suite on a floor. We have often used parking garages. We have used large storage areas, and engineering shops when available. Whenever necessary for ventilation, we utilize an air-scrubber to vent scrubbed air from the building during the refinishing process.

Plastic laminate doors . . .

We also replace the p-lam on doors (Formica, Wilsonart, Nevamar). The process is similar: Doors must be removed, and a place to work must be available. The process only requires one day instead of three, in most cases.

Experience makes it work . . .

We can understand the apprehension that building managers and engineers often have about allowing a group after-hours access to their building, especially when performing potentially high-liability services such as refinishing. That's why CWS has worked for the past decade to develop schedules and methods that work both in occupied buildings and at new construction sites. We have performed on-site refinishing of doors, elevator interiors, conference tables, security consoles and other millwork for:

  • VarTec Telecom
  • Blue Cross Blue Sheild Corporate Offices
  • Cityplace
  • Annuity Board of the Southern Baptist Convention
  • Sewell Oldsmobile-Pontiac-GMC Dealership of Dallas
  • ECOM Realty
  • Bryan Tower
  • O'Connor Ridge
  • Overton Centre