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How To Remove And Replace A Trash Chute Door In Your Building

Trash chute doors are subjected to a lot of use and fair amount of abuse on occasions; eventually, they will need replacement with new doors, a task you can easily perform yourself. Below are items that you will need, as well as information on how you can remove and replace your facility's trash chute doors:

Tools and materials needed

  • Replacement trash chute door
  • Self-tapping sheet metal screws
  • Electric drill with nut driver bits
  • Scraper or putty knife
  • Utility knife
  • All-purpose spray cleaner
  • Paper towels
  • Silicone caulk
  • Caulk gun
  • Wooden shims
  • Measuring tape

Step-by-step procedure

1. Assemble your materials - The first step is to locate a replacement trash chute door that will fit into the wall opening into your chute. Begin by opening the chute door and measuring the inside width and length of the door's frame. Next, locate a new trash chute door that matches the current door's dimensions; if you aren't able to find an exact match, then you can use shims, as described below, to make up a few fractions of an inch difference.

2. Prepare for safe work - While replacing the trash chute door isn't difficult, it does require you to make a few advance preparations for working safely. First, begin by securing all trash chute doors above and below the location where you are working. This will prevent people from accidentally dropping items into the work area and protect people below. Next, be sure to shut down the trash compactor unit at the bottom. If you accidentally drop a tool into the machine, it could cause serious damage to the device.

3. Remove the old trash chute door - Once you have secured the trash chute doors and turned off the compactor, you are ready to begin work. Take a sharp utility knife and run the blade along the joint between the door frame and the wall. This will cut the caulk and separate the door from the wall. Peel away the pieces of caulk from the door and wall.

Next, locate the screws holding the chute door in place and remove them using an electric drill fitted with an appropriately-sized nut driver bit. Be sure to hold on tightly to the door to prevent it from accidentally falling forward on to the floor. After the screws have all been removed, carefully pull the door unit from the wall and set it aside.

4. Prepare the area for mounting a new door - After the old trash chute door has been removed, use a scraper or putty knife to remove trash residue that may be stuck to the area the door frame once covered. Following that, spray the area with an appropriate all-purpose liquid cleaner and wipe it down with paper towels.

Once you have cleaned up the area where the new door will be mounted, apply a small amount of silicone caulk to each screw hole remaining from the previous door installation. This will help keep bugs away and prevent odors from escaping the chute.

5. Install the new trash chute door - When you have finished preparing the opening for the new door, slip the new door into place to ensure it fits properly. If it is loose, you can insert a few wooden shims into the space beneath the door to push it tightly against the opening in the wall.

Once you are satisfied the door fits the opening correctly, hold it securely in position against the opening and drive self-tapping sheet metal screws through the door frame and into the chute walls. Be sure not to drill the sheet metal screws into the same holes you filled with caulk in step number 4.

6. Test and finish the new door - After installing the new trash chute door, test it for smooth operation by opening and closing it several times. Finish the job by applying a new line of silicone caulk to the joint between the door frame and the wall.

For more information or advice, contact a business such as E.L. Harvey & Sons.