Buy pet door yourself, hire handyman to install it
I'm looking for a company or contractor that would install pet doors. What kind of company should I be looking for, and what should I expect out of the job? – Angie's List member Hector Sosa
A handyman can do the job, says Tom Sims, owner of highly rated Tom's Handy Services in Muskego, Wis., though he advises homeowners ask prospective companies if they have experience installing pet doors.
"It shouldn't take much more than a hour," Sims says. "It all depends on what someone charges, but it should be somewhere around $70."
He says the homeowner should purchase the pet door themselves to save time and money. "That way, they can consider the various prices and features on different doors," Sims says. "If the handyman has to [buy the door], they have to charge a little more for the time running around trying to find it."
Preventing moisture infiltration can be accomplished by applying caulk around the pet door's edges, he says, though some loss to the home's energy efficiency is inevitable.
"With the dog or cat going in and out, that alone is going to cause some energy loss," Sims says. He recommends installing the pet door in an area of the home such as the basement or garage, where a draft won't be felt as acutely.
Blaine Peronto, a carpenter for highly rated Handyman Renovations in Glendale, Wis., says an existing door's integrity can be compromised if the pet door is too large or if it's installed too far from the hinges.
"If you're going to put a pet door in, put it closer to the hinges so there is stronger support for the [existing] door," Peronto says.
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