How to hang a door

  • Hanging a wooden door in a door frame is not as easy as some think, doing it wrong can cause you to have uneven gaps around the door. At worst your door won't even latch.

    On Site Care of Doors

    Doors should be handled with care to prevent any physical damage to them.
    Store  doors under cover in a dry well ventilated area.
    They should be stored flat on an even flat surface on a suitable bearer that is longer than the door width.
    Doors should be stored away from harmful UV rays that can cause fading and discolouration of the wood.
    Doors should not be stored or fitted in a building until all the wet trades are completed and dried out.

Pre-installation of doors

Prior to hanging a door and immediately after.
Apply two coats of paint, varnish or sealer to all the edges (including the top and bottom, all 6 sides, cut-outs for locks, etc) to prevent absorption of moisture.

Trimming of Doors

Use a pencil to mark the door for trimming.
Trim doors 20mm on top and bottom rails and 10mm on vertical stiles.
Saw or plane up to the pencil marks, then sand the edges until they are smooth.
Remember that it is better to trim off too little than too much.
Check if the door fits by getting someone else to help you hold the door in the door frame and see that it fits.
If not you will need to trim the door again until it fits properly.

  • Determine in which direction the door is to open

    Should the door open into the room the hinge placements should be so that the light switch is accessible on the side opposite the hinges. Therefore the light switch should be immediately accessible on the knob side of the door.

Place the door on its side.
Measure and mark with a pencil 15cm from the top and the bottom of the door. This mark shows the bottom of the hinge at the bottom, and the top of the hinge at the top.

Cut hinge recesses

With the use of a chisel carefully cut shallow recesses called mortises in the door within your pencil marks.
Strip away the excess wood and trim the recess until the hinge is flush with the wood.

Drill pilot holes

With each hinge flap in its mortise, mark the screw positions with a pencil.
Remove the hinges and use a drill bit that is slightly narrower than your screws to drill pilot holes where they are marked by the pencil.

Screw on the hinges

This is best done with a drill but you can also use a screwdriver.

Mark the hinge positions on the door frame.

Place shallow wedges at the bottom of the door.
Get somebody to hold the door for you in the door frame in the precise position that you want to hang it.
The hinge knuckles should be parallel with the frame.
Draw around the hinges with a pencil.

Chisel hinge recesses

Put the door down and then cut mortises in the door frame in the same way you did the door itself.
Hold the door against the frame to make sure the hinges are flush.

Fix hinges to the frame

Mark pilot holes in the frame with the use of a pencil and drill through these in the same way as you did for the door.
Put the screws through the pilot holes to fix the hinges on the frame.

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