help please, cannot get screws out of old door frame

20 Sep 2010
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United Kingdom
I own a lovely old house, Cob walls, thatched roof so several hundred years old. Iwas looking at the paintwork on my internal doors and frames and it is so bad I have started to strip it to repaint, however I have discovered that all the door frames are oak so have decided to strip back completely, a rather slow job as cannot use a heat gun as lots of the paint is lead based, but am slowly getting there.

I have however come to a bit of a problem, the hinges of the door are painted over with about 15 coats, I have painstakingly stripped back and found teh screws, and cleaned all round them. BUT I can;t shift them. I have tried the soldering iron trick - no effect, I have tried angle griniding off the very bottom of the hinge to push the pin out - no pin as hinge bottom is solid. now i am at a loss - any suggestions?

Many thanks
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that looks a possibility, will vernture to B&Q tomorrow an see if they have one. Tried my hammer drill on screw set, tried my power driver. Tried the usual screwdriver and hammer. could drill out heads - but I need the door to go back on in the same place and don;t really want to have to move the hinges unless as a last measure.
Try tightening the screws first, theat often breaks the bond. On really stiff one an impact driver is a possibility as is tapping a screwdriver into the slot ( you may have to re grind a driver to do this ) and applying extra leverage with a spanner or grips.
If the head becomes chewed up then revert to a thin nail punch and hammer to apply force to the screw edge to turn it . Slow but eventually it will come out enough to get a pair of side cutters or grips on the head.
You may also find that old hinges are cast iron and will break out with a good belt giving access to the screws although you will have to replace the hinges of course.
What about removing the screws from the door, leaving the hinges attached to frame?
Without seeing the job it is difficult to advise how to extract rusted in screws without damaging the casing.
But there are a number of ways, using a screw and stud extractor, use a good sharp centre punch and the drill screws out or do as I have done many times use an electric steamer (the type with a nozzle) as used to get stains out of fabrics, heat and swell the timber and then prize the hinge loose any damage can be repaired using a suitable type oak and wood glue, done it lots of times on antique furniture.

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