Historic Preservation - Technical Procedures

Replacing Deteriorated Woodwork
Procedure code:
National Capitol Region Specifications
Wood And Plastics
Architectural Woodwork
Last Modified:
Replacing Deteriorated Woodwork
Last Modified:




    A.   This procedure includes guidance on wood restoration work
         including repairing existing woodwork by removing damaged
         or deteriorated material and replacing with new to match

    B.   See 01100-07-S for general project guidelines to be
         reviewed along with this procedure.  These guidelines
         cover the following sections:

         1.   Safety Precautions

         2.   Historic Structures Precautions

         3.   Submittals

         4.   Quality Assurance

         5.   Delivery, Storage and Handling

         6.   Project/Site Conditions

         7.   Sequencing and Scheduling

         8.   General Protection (Surface and Surrounding)

         These guidelines should be reviewed prior to performing
         this procedure and should be followed, when applicable,
         along with recommendations from the Regional Historic
         Preservation Officer (RHPO).


    A.   AWI  Quality Standard: Comply with applicable
         requirements of Architectural Woodwork Standards,
         published by the Architectural Woodwork
         Institute (www.AWInet.net), except as otherwise indicated.


    A.   Performance Requirements: Submit written program for each
         phase of restoration process including protection of
         surrounding materials on building during operations.
         Describe in detail materials, methods and equipment to be
         used for each phase of restoration work.


    A.   Mock-Ups: Prior to start of wood restoration work,
         prepare the following sample panels in building where
         directed by RHPO. Obtain RHPO's acceptance of visual
         qualities before proceeding with the work. Retain
         acceptable panels in undisturbed condition, suitably
         marked, during construction as a standard for judging
         completed work.

         1.   Wood Repair: Prepare sample panels for each type of
              woodwork indicated to be patched, resurfaced,
              modified or replaced. Prepare mock-up panels on
              existing woodwork to demonstrate quality of
              materials and workmanship.


    A.   Existing Conditions:

         1.   Installer shall advise Contractor of temperature
              and humidity requirements for woodwork installation
              areas. Do not install woodwork until required
              temperature and relative humidity have been
              stabilized and will be maintained in installation

         2.   Maintain temperature and humidity in installation
              area as required to maintain moisture content of
              installed woodwork within a 1.0 percent tolerance
              of optimum moisture content, from date of
              installation through remainder of construction
              period. The fabricator of woodwork shall determine
              optimum moisture content and required temperature
              and humidity conditions.

         3.   Determine that surfaces to which finishes are to be
              applied are even, smooth, sound, clean, dry and
              free from defects affecting proper application.
              Correct or report defective surfaces to Contracting



    A.   New or Replacement Materials:

         1.   Wood Moisture Content: Provide kiln-dried lumber
              with an average moisture content range of 6% to 11%
              for interior work. Maintain temperature and
              relative humidity during fabrication, storage and
              finishing operations so that moisture content
              values for woodwork at time of installation do not
              exceed the above range.

         2.   Replacement Wood: Match species, grade, grain
              pattern, and other special characteristics of
              existing woodwork.

    B.   Clean, soft cloths



    A.   Surface Preparation:

         1.   Condition woodwork to average prevailing humidity
              conditions in installation areas prior to

         2.   Back prime woodwork on all surfaces which will be
              concealed with one coat of wood primer. Schedule
              delivery to allow time for application and drying
              of Back prime coat before installation of woodwork.

         3.   Remove miscellaneous hardware, nails, etc., from
              all existing woodwork as required to provide a
              first class installation of new or replacement

         4.   Prior to installation of new architectural
              woodwork, examine shop fabricated work for
              completion, and complete work as required,
              including back priming and removal of packing.


    A.   Carefully remove at locations indicated any damaged or
         deteriorated woodwork. Unless indicated otherwise,
         replace the entire length of the existing damaged piece
         to the next butt joint.

    B.   For partial replacement of existing pieces, use a neat,
         well-fitted level cut with grain aligned in transparent
         finished wood.

    C.   Install new pieces as described below:

         1.   Install the work plumb, level, true and straight
              with no distortions. Shim as required using
              concealed shims.

         2.   Cut to fit unless specified to be shop-fabricated
              or shop-cut to exact size. Where woodwork abuts
              other finished work, scribe and cut for accurate
              fit. Before making cutouts, drill pilot holes at

         3.   Standing and Running Trim: Install with minimum
              number of joints possible, using full-length pieces
              (from maximum length of lumber available) to the
              greatest extent possible. Stagger joints in
              adjacent and related members. Cope at returns,
              miter at corners, and comply with Quality Standards
              for joinery.

         4.   Anchor woodwork to anchors or blocking built-in or
              directly attached to substrates. Secure to grounds,
              stripping and blocking with countersunk, concealed
              fasteners and blind nailing as required for a
              complete installation. Except where prefinished
              matching fasteners heads are required, use fine
              finishing nails for exposed nailing, countersunk
              and filled flush with woodwork, and matching final
              finish where transparent finish is indicated.

    D.   Finish replacement woodwork to match adjacent woodwork
         surfaces.  See 06400-05-R and 06400-10-R for guidance.


    A.   Upon completion of this work, all floors, walls, and
         other adjacent surfaces that are stained, marred, or
         otherwise damaged by work under this section shall be
         cleaned and repaired and all work and the adjacent areas
         shall be left in a clean and perfect condition.

    B.   All completed work shall be adequately protected from
         damage by subsequent building operations and effects of
         weather. Protection shall be by methods recommended by
         the manufacturer of installed materials and as approved
         by the RHPO.

    C.   Repair damaged and defective woodwork wherever possible
         to eliminate defects functionally and visually; where not
         possible to repair properly, replace woodwork. Adjust
         joinery for uniform appearance.

    D.   Clean woodwork:  Dust and damp wipe woodwork with a soft
         cloth dampened in clean water; dry rub with soft cloth to
         maintain the polish, rubbing along the grain of the wood.

    E.   Stain and Spot Removal:

         1.   Stains may be cleaned by prompt damp wiping with
              cloth dampened in clear water or rubbing with cloth
              dampened in solvent. Dry the wood with a soft

         2.   White spots may be removed by rubbing them with a
              small amount of linseed oil.

                         END OF SECTION

Last Reviewed 2014-10-23