Donald asks…

How do I keep my small dog from darting out the front door whenever anyone comes or goes?

I have a 3 year old Min.Pin/Terrier Mix. Sometimes he darts out the door when people are coming in or out. I don’t know how to stop him from doing this. I’m afraid he will get hit by a car.
I’m not always right there to grab him when my kids are coming in and out with their friends.

Aklymroofing answers:

Take him back to basics and work on your basic obedience with him – make sure he sits, stays, downs, and leaves when you ask him to. When he is listening to your commands then bring your kids into the training as well, but make sure that you are there to reinforce the commands that your children are giving by standing behind them to give them some authority, and you can use physical prompts to get him to obey the commands.

The next stage is to start praticing at doorways so that he sits and waits before going through a doorway. The easiest way to do this is to put him on a lead and take him up to the door and make him sit to one side of the door, ask him to sit, you walk through the doorway, then you call him on the other side. If he tries to dart through the door before you then use the lead to stop him, call him back to the original place, and then start again. You will need to practice this over and over until he responds, and you will need to practice with all exterior doors to the house (front door, back door, sliding door, whatever). If you have a backyard and he goes outside tehn you need to do it for that doorway too.

Our dogs sit and wait at the front and back door through practice, though it is much harder to get dogs to listen to children than adults. If you are really worried, then why not invest in a babygate that fits across the inside of your front door that has a gate your children can open, it is still an opening that he can get out, but he may be less excited if he can say hello to your kids from behind the safety of the gate – he may be racing out the door because he is so eager to see the kids.

Mary asks…

What is the difference between fiberglass and steel exterior doors?

I want the advantage and disadvantage of each.

Aklymroofing answers:

The new fiberglass & composite doors are as strong or even stronger than steel doors. They’re totally paintable, wo’nt rust, & are much lighter than steel doors.
A far superior product!
Hope this helped!

Nancy asks…

Can I replace an exterior door with a window?

Can it be done? I’m looking to buy a home and found one I really like. The only problem is that there is a deck off one of the rooms. As my children get older they won’t share a room any longer and this room will become one of theirs. I can not deal with the idea of my child’s room having a deck. Especially not a teen!!! Can the door of this room leading to the deck be turned into a window and what are the costs? It’s just a regular door. Nothing fancy and not double door either.

Aklymroofing answers:

It could be easily done as been previously stated, but it’s not what I do. Mainly because your children won’t be teens forever nor live with you forever.

The better option is to turn the door frame into a window frame by adding a transom and threshold as a sill.

I would take the door off store it (wouldn’t be difficult to re-hang in the future), make good the hinge let inns, fix a transom to just above the middle of the frame, then fix a threshold (it would need a damp course).

Once you have a transom plus threshold in place, all you need to do is install glass to fit and wooden beading. If you didn’t want a full length window you could clad the bottom half with a panel type plywood at little cost for good effect.

This could be easily done by any decent handy person DIY for approximately $150 and probably run you approximately $450 to have done.

Where as to have the door frame removed and buy plus install a window with having to make good both inside and outside linings plus trimmings would be $700-$1000 depending on the quality of window plus the availability of labour.

Helen asks…

Where can I find very large chrome Victorian door knob?

I need approx 3 larger the better. The base should measure around 12mm diameter. I have looked online but they are not Victorian and mostly are far too small. It must be suitable for exterior front entrance door.

Aklymroofing answers:

Look in the Yellow pages under…..Architechtural salvage …
Failing that try e-bay…
Local scrap yards also get them occasionally..

Susan asks…

I have been asked to give a bid on the installation of over 200 exterior doors.?

What would be a competative price per door? This is in an apartment complex and it is new construction. I do not want to over bid this job?

Aklymroofing answers:

$3,000 for the whole job would be a great price, if you only want to get paid $15 per door, and then pay taxes on that $15. And then pay a helper, and pay for shims, etc. Even if you aren’t trimming the doors out, just leaving the door in the opening, it’s a huge task.

Assuming the door comes prehung, and you aren’t including the cost of the doors or hardware, I would want to make about $50 profit per door above and beyond all of my cost. But think about it this way:

-Gas to and from the jobsite every day, plus wear and tear on your vehicle. I don’t know how much you will spend on that.
-You will be expected to provide all screws, shims, etc. You’re looking at about $3 per door for that. = $600
-You’ll probably want a helper. At $10/hour, and doing one door per hour, that’s $2000 just for the helper, and you already know what skill level you’ll get for that price.
-You can easily spend 2 hours properly hanging a door, making sure it doesn’t bind anywhere, making sure it’s dead level and perfectly plumb. And how long does it take to install the hardware? Do you have to put the knob and deadbolt on? Is there a peephole? A chain? Do you need to put in a threshold as well? Now we’re looking at 2.5 or 3 hours per door, and your helper has just made $6000. Now you don’t have gas money, and you are selling your plasma to get some dinner.
-One of the doors grinds and makes a funny noise 2 weeks after you install it. Who are they going to call? You. Now you have to drive out there and mess with some door for an hour and a half just so it will stop squeaking. But the trim carpenter has already put in the trim, so good luck adding a little shim here and there to help level it out. Now you have to take the door down, plane off one side, prime it, paint it, and hang it again. And this is just one door out of 200. Maybe it’s 10 doors, and you’ve just blown 3 whole days and a thank of gas for nothing.


Add up every cost you think you will incur, then add 20% for things you didn’t think of, or unforeseen problems.

Add up how much time you think it will take you, then how much you want to make per hour. Then double it, because it always takes longer than you think it will.

If you underbid and get the job, you could go bankrupt just trying to finish it. If you overbid, the worst that will happen is someone ELSE will get stuck with bankruptcy while you are making money somewhere else.

You don’t really want to be the guy who is willing to do it for the absolute least amount of money. That guy can’t pay his bills. That’s the guy whose tools are on the shelf at the pawn shop.

Overbid, and do the job right.

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