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ICF exterior door problem

rykertest | Posted in General Questions on

So we poured our Nudura ICF walls and all was well u til we went to put the exterior doors in.  The contractor forgot to account for the door buck thickness.  So our doors fit,  but barely.  Ok, no big deal, we can tapcon them in, use the one 2×12 material that can still fit for the lock set side, it’ll work.  Well, further inspection also shows very little room for a threshold.  There is approx. 1” of room between the bottom of the door and the concrete/foam of the ICF.  I plan to post pics when I get home.  

What makes this even more frustrating is the builder is a longtime friend and I can’t get him to come and fix it, partly because I don’t think he truly knows what to do.  So I’m having to try and figure out how to remedy it myself so we can move in.  We can get the doors in the opening, but the threshold and the doors seems to be a problem.  

What I’m afraid needs to happen is a concrete saw needs to be used to cut the opening wider, but I’m hoping there is another way.  Can I remove the foam on each side of the concrete on the threshold and pour concrete in to create a threshold?  Will a 1” cap hold up to traffic?

Your help with this little mess is appreciated.  

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  1. rykertest | | #1

    Pics attached.

  2. Expert Member
    Akos | | #2

    There is nothing wrong with attaching the door directly to masonry, it is done all the time.

    A standard aluminum sill is 1 1/8" thick (there are some lower profile ones as well) and you can get extension for them to get to the edge of the foam.

    I can't clearly see in the picture but if you have framing at the top, you can take that out as well for more height.

    The more important item there is to get a bit of slope for proper drainage, for that you might have to grind a bit of the concrete away but that shouldn't be a big job.

    1. rykertest | | #3

      Hi Akos, thanks for your reply. Do you happen to have an image or link for the aluminum thresholds you’re referring too? I assume that’s a special order item and not available at Lowe’s, Home Depot, etc? Thanks again

      1. Expert Member
  3. spenceday | | #5

    There are ADA Thresholds that are typically aluminum and are 1/2 or 3/4 “ high. Make sure you use a high quality sweep because this type of threshold is notoriously leaky.
    6 in. x 36 in. Door Threshold A.D.A Compliant for Doors up to 36 in.

  4. jberks | | #6

    Looks like you've taken the top piece out already. Which is good to get more space as Akos mentioned.

    Spence also pointed out a 1/2" thick threshold which looks like it'll work well. But there are varying threshold thicknesses, just find a local commercial door supplier. Or the home Depot stuff if you have the space is obviously easiest.

    Remember to install the door on the concrete core of the ICF, so the threshold sits on the concrete core as well. Also seal the concrete core and ICF layers with Polyurethane as an added measure to protect from moisture since you're installing wood. Integrate this to your WRB. As Akos mentioned, slope the concrete core at the bottom with an angle grinder and a diamond grinding wheel to get a nice slope for your threshold.

    I should mention that the severity of sloping the threshold or the height of the threshold all depends on how protected from rain your door will be. It sounds like you've got enough problems, so if you're going to have a large awning over your door and your porch will be well dropped or sloped away, and you glcanr figure out the grinding, you might consider omitting this step if you have to even though it's good practice. It all depends on the scenario.

    So for getting the door in, as akos mentioned, commercial doors are usually just tapconned with the concrete, so you don't need a wood rough opening. But looks like you're going to have some gaps on the sides, so I would take out that 2x6 on the right, centre the door and measure the equal gaps to fill them equally, you'll probably have to use layers of plywood cause it sounds like it'll be less than 1.5" on either side. If you end up having enough wood to screw the door to (I'd be happy with at least and inch) then you can tapcon the ply right to the ICF core and then install the door frame with wood screws. Otherwise use longer tapcons through the door frame. I prefer the former just cause I find tapcons finicky and would rather mess with them on the "rough opening" than the finished door frame.


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