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Frequently Asked Questions

Classic Series Basement Doors
Answers to questions frequently asked about Bilco Classic Series Basement Doors are provided below. Please call our Customer Service Department at 1-800-854-9724 or send them an e-mail if you require further assistance. 
Q.  What size basement door do I need for my home's basement areaway?
Bilco offers an on-line sizing program to help you select the proper size door for your home. Please contact our customer service department if you need additional help in selecting the proper model. Sizing Program
Q.  Does Bilco offer pre-finished basement doors?
Bilco now offers Size B and C Classic Series basement doors with a factory-applied powder coat paint finish. This finish is much more durable that traditional wet coatings and is available in four standard colors to match any home's exterior. Powder Coat Finished Basement Doors
Q.  What type of paint should I use to finish my steel Bilco basement door?
Bilco Basement doors are supplied with a red oxide primer finish and a finish coat is required within 45 days of installation to maintain the product warranty. Bilco recommends using Sherwin-Williams A11 Series All Surface Enamel in a white or light color. If your door was purchased with a powder coat finish, no additional finishing is required.
Q.  Why does Bilco advise me to paint my door white or light color?
In extreme conditions, steel in the summer sun can become hot and cause injury. White or a light color finish coat will reflect sunlight and reduce the temperature of the metal.
Q.  What type of caulk should I use to install my Bilco Door?
Bilco recommends a high grade polyurethane caulk for basement door installation. Caulk is available for purchase on the Bilco website. Purchase Caulk
Q.  Some primer got scratched/chipped off my door during shipment and installation, what should I do?
Sand the damaged area to bare metal and coat with primer such as Sherwin Williams Controls Rust. Apply a finish coat to the entire door by following the instructions on the paint label adhered to the product.
Q.  My door is rusty on the inside, and it was never painted. How do I fix this issue?
A Bilco door is required to be painted on the inside and outside within 45 days of installation to maintain the product warranty. Sand the damaged areas to bare metal and coat with primer such as Sherwin Williams Controls Rust. Apply a finish coat to the entire door by following the instructions on the paint label adhered to the product.
Q.  What is the warranty on Classic Series Basement Doors?
Bilco Classic Series Basement Doors carry a 5-year warranty against defects in material and workmanship. Complete warranty information
Q.  Why do I see light coming through Bilco door?
It is normal to see a small amount of daylight around the interior perimeter of the doors. The overlapping flanges are designed with a small gap to allow air flow to help reduce condensation on the underside of the doors. This gap will not affect the weather-tightness of the door.
Q.  Why is my door leaking?
The most common cause of leaking is a door that is out of alignment. Make sure you door is square, plumb, and that there is a gutter above the door that prevents large amounts of rain water from falling directly on the door. Also, check the header channel at the top of the door to make sure that it is not clogged with leaves or other debris. Clean out the header so water can run cleanly through and away from the door opening. If all of those are correct, make sure your door is caulked properly per the Bilco installation instructions.  Installation Instructions
Q.  Why does my door leak between the door and the extension panel?
Run a bead of Polyurethane caulk (opaque) along the seam that joins the door and the extension panel on both the interior and exterior. Extension installation instructions
Q.  My door was imbedded in cement when installed and now it is rusting and leaking. How do I fix this problem?
A Bilco door should never be installed with the anchor flange buried in cement. To fix this problem, remove the cement that is covering the door and sand the damaged areas down to the bare metal. Coat the repaired areas with primer such as Sherwin Williams Controls Rust and apply a finish coat of paint. Caulk as required per the Bilco installation instructions. Installation Instructions
Q.  Why do my gas springs hit the side wall when I open and close the door?
The gas spring should always be installed with the black end up (larger diameter) and silver end (smaller diameter) on the bottom. If this is not the case, remove and reverse your gas springs to the correct position.  Installation Instructions
Q.  My door was installed on top of treated lumber and is leaking and rusting. How do I fix this problem?
A Bilco door is designed to be anchored directly to a masonry areaway and should never be installed on pressure treated lumber. To correct this problem, the door should be removed and reinstalled properly per Bilco’s installation instructions. Bilco offers foundation plates that can be used to cap slightly damaged or uneven areaway surfaces. Installation Instructions:   Foundation Plates
Q.  How do I repair slight bows or bends in my door leaves?
Refer to the last page of the Bilco installation instructions to correct this problem.  Installation Instructions
Q.  Is there a gasket or insulation kit available for Bilco basement doors?
Bilco does not offer a gasket or insulation kit for this product. Although the doors are designed to be weather-tight, Bilco recommends the use of an insulated vertical door at the bottom of your areaway for maximum energy efficiency.
Q.  Does Bilco make any custom size doors?
We do not offer any custom size doors. However, we do offer extensions and foundation plates to help accommodate almost any size foundation.
Q.  Are parts still available for older Bilco basement doors?
We no longer offer replacement coil springs (feather action operators) or torsion rods for doors manufactured before 1990. Check out our on-line parts ordering system to see a complete list of parts available. Parts Ordering System