How can I get rid of odor from old plywood doors?

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I have an older house (circa 1940's) with the awful flat plywood doors on the bedroom closet. I decided to convert them to doors that swing out. I removed the doors and the track and re-framed the opening. The old doors were in good shape so I just trimmed them down to fit the opening & added some strips of molding to make them look more like a shaker style. I then painted the "new" doors with 2 coats of latex paint. I hung them and they look great. The problem is they smell. I hadn't noticed any odor before starting this project. I'm pretty sure the smell is coming from the plywood doors themselves. Any suggestions on how to get rid of the smell besides making new doors?


  4 answers
  • Polly Fuller Polly Fuller on Feb 02, 2019

    some of the plywood that came from either China or Japan a while ago had a bad smell. they removed it from the market because it was toxic.. that may be the case with an older home. If your not worried about that, try Kilz oil base.

  • Oliva Oliva on Feb 02, 2019

    Are you sure it's not from the paint atop unprimed plywood? Was the plywood sufficiently dry before being painted? Did you provide sufficient curing (not

    "dry" ) time for your paint?

    Given your home's age, I'm surprised that plywood was used for the closet doors.

    Where are you located?

    Have you knowledge of any previous owners switching out the original doors to the plywood? If so, it may be as Patty suggested, in which case I'd replace the doors, altogether.

  • Pamela Pamela on Feb 05, 2019

    I am not sure what you can do , but they have been having problems with some of the building materials, mostly wood and sheetrock that has been imported from China !!! I watch ed a story about it on 60 minutes , a year or so ago . If it was me , I would get rid of it , sorry about all the work you put into it . I always smell any wood or rubber products before buying... My sister spent a fortune on a large vanity , that stinks !!! Even 5 years after she bought it !😩