Advertisement

Replacing Old Teak Doors and Frames on a Boat

Give your boat a fresh look with new custom doors and hatches.

April 20, 2020
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on email
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on email
Installing new teak doors on your boat
You can spruce up your boat by replacing the old, faded doors. Tim Barker

You don’t find many new boats with teak companionway hatches or console doors these days, and with good reason. While freshly oiled or varnished teak trim lends a touch of class and visual warmth to an otherwise stark-white fiberglass boat interior, the wood requires constant maintenance or else it weathers, turns gray, and eventually detracts from the boat’s appearance rather than enhancing it.

If this sounds familiar, you can spruce up your boat by replacing the old, faded eyesores with made-to-fit doors that are crafted from King Starboard, a high-density polyethylene material that’s durable, available in a range of colors, and requires virtually no maintenance.

Ocoee, Florida-based Boat Outfitters’ website (boatoutfitters.com) allows you to spec out new custom doors, complete with frames, choice of hardware and other options, that can serve as straight replacements for the old doors. Once you place your order, Boat Outfitters will mill and assemble the doors and frames, hinges and latches to your specifications. Boat Outfitters also pre-drills and countersinks the frames for fasteners (not included), then ships the items to you for DIY installation. Here are the key steps based on replacing a door for a 14-inch-wide-by-16-inch-tall opening in the helm console of a dual-console boat.

Advertisement

Skill Level: 1 of 5

Finish Time: Approx. 1.5 hours (per door)

Tools and Supplies

Advertisement

• Boat Outfitters King Starboard Boat Door ($161.44 for base door and frame for an opening measuring 14 inches wide by 16 inches high, boatoutfitters.com)

• Measuring tape

• Power drill and bit set

Advertisement

• Stainless-steel fasteners (to fasten frames)

• 3M Marine Grade Silicone Sealant ($24.99/10-ounce cartridge, westmarine.com)

• Phillips screwdriver

Advertisement

• Socket or box-wrench set

• Shop rags (to wipe excess sealant)

Measuring for the door replacement
Measure Carefully Tim Barker

Start by removing the old door and frame, then carefully measure the hole cutout height and width to within 1/16th of an inch. Double-check to make sure the dimensions are correct, then input these measurements into the Boat Outfitters online order form. The form will then automatically calculate the outside dimensions of the frame, as well as the height and width of the frame’s pass-through. With these dimensions in hand, recheck the installation area to ensure that the overall size will fit the mounting surface and that the opening of the pass-through in the frame will meet your needs.

Tip: The online order form will also ask you to select a color from among white/white, arctic white, seafoam, dolphin gray or black. You can also special-order colors such as fish white and glacier gray.

Choosing hinges and latches
Hinges and Latches Tim Barker

Each outward-opening door comes with a pre-installed stainless-steel piano hinge. You will need to specify the swing—hinging right or left, or hinging down or up. This will determine along which edge Boat Outfitters installs the hinge, as well as where the latch is positioned. Each door is equipped with a slam latch, but the online form asks you to specify between a base plastic (black or white) latch or stainless-steel latch upgrade ($22). The base latches are nonlocking, but you can also upgrade to key-locking latches in plastic ($5) or a locking stainless-steel latch ($25).

Choosing the louver type
Seal and Louver Options Tim Barker

The standard door frames do not include any kind of weather-tight seal, but you can add an optional bulb seal ($25 upgrade) to help prevent water intrusion. This would be helpful for a compartment designed for the dry stowage of items such as life jackets or fishing tackle. On the other end of the spectrum, you can add optional vented louvers ($25 upcharge) to the doors to help circulate air and prevent mold and mildew in a confined area. This would be helpful on a compartment door on an anchor locker, or on a wet stowage compartment such as a ski locker.

Read Next: Easy Tackle-Stowage Additions

Install the teak door
Installing the Door Tim Barker

Once you receive the door, dry-fit the frame to ensure it fits and the swing is correct. Use the pre-drilled holes as a guide to drill the mounting holes (after checking behind for interference). Bed the frame with marine sealant such as 3M Marine Grade Silicone (not necessary on doors for wet lockers). Use No. 8 oval- or flat-head self-tapping screws or machine screws with backing washers and nyloc nuts (hardware not included) to secure the frame, bedding each mounting hole with a dab of sealant. To prevent the Starboard frame from cracking, do not overtighten the screws.


Advertisement

More How To

Advertisement
Advertisement