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How to Hang an Interior Door

When it comes to renovating your home, it is likely you will need to know how to hang an interior door.  This is because internal doors are usually changed or temporally removed when redecorating.

If a door is not hung correctly you may have uneven gaps or problems with closing.

Below is a step by step guide on how to hang an interior door.  The guide assumes you are replacing an existing door.

Step  1.  Remove the Old Door  

Removing doors carelessly may create issues with your door frame.  So it is important to take care when removing your old door.

Remove the screws carefully, starting from the bottom hinge.  This helps keep the door more stable, allowing you to handle the door better. Do not forget to provide support when it comes to removing the top hinge screws.

Step 2.  Buy a New Door 

First of all, buy the correct size door for your frame.  You will also need to choose an appropriate style, one that suites the rest of your home.  Below is some advice about measuring up a new door.  We have also provided a typical door size guide.

If replacing an existing door

If you are replacing an existing door, you simply measure that.  You will need to make a note of the height, width and thickness of your existing door.  You will need to buy the closest match to your existing door, rounding the dimensions up, not down.  Keep your measurements for future steps.

If you do not have an existing door

if you have a frame with no door, you will need to measure the height and the width inside your door frame.

Measure the height at two points, left of the frame, and right of the frame.

Now measure the width at three points.  Top, middle and bottom of the frame.

Take only the largest of the height and width sizes to determine the nearest standard door size you require.  Keep your measurements for future steps.

Standard Internal Door Sizes

The measurements below will make the task of how to hang an interior door much easier.

525mm x 2040mm

626mm x 2040mm

726mm x 2040mm

826mm x 2040mm

926mm x 2040mm

610mm x 1981mm

686mm x 1981mm

762mm x 1981mm

838mm x 1981mm


Step 3.  Locate the Lock Block  

Before you start doing anything with your new door, it is important to mark up which side the handle goes.  The location your handle goes is called the lock block.  This lock block is a section of timber fixed inside the frame of the door, it allows you to fit your latch or lock to the door.  The rest of the door will be hollow.

The location of the lock block may be printed on the side of the door.  If the lock block is not marked, you can find it by taping a screwdriver against the door side.  A different sound will indicate the whereabouts of the lock block.

The lock block usually extends approximately 200mm up and down from the centre of the door.  Opposite the lock block will be the location of your hinges.


Step 4.  Marking Dimensions of your New Door

An interior door that fits well should have a 2mm gap on either side and also at the top. The gap at the bottom will depend on the thickness of your flooring/carpet.  Usually a gap between 5mm and 10mm is required at the bottom.

Hopefully you will not have to mark up your new door, and it fits perfectly within your door frame.  Continue to step 5 if it does.

If it does not fit in the frame properly you will need to mark areas on your new door to be trimmed.  Below are some tips on marking the dimensions of your new door, in order for it to fit correctly.

If you have measurements from an existing door

In step 2 you wrote down measurements of your existing door.  Mark up your new door with these measurements, assuming your previous door fitted perfectly.  If it didn’t, then use the instructions below for no existing door.

If you do not have an existing door

In step 2 you wrote down measurements of your door frame.  You will use these measurements to determine the size of your new door.  But carryout the following adjustments:

Width measurement:  You will need to subtract 4mm from the width of your frame.

Height measurement:  Subtract 7mm or 12mm, depending upon the type of flooring you will have.  Such as carpet, laminate, etc.

If you are fitting an internal fire door, check the manufacturer’s instructions for what can be trimmed and from where.


Step 5.  Trimming your New Door

You will now trim your new internal door to the correct dimensions, as calculated in step 4.  Plane the door as required, using an electric plane will help you get an even finish, and sand for a smooth finish.  More information about trimming or planing an interior door can be seen here.


Step 6.  Mark Hinge Positions on your New Door

You need to mark the position of your hinges on your door.  There are no regulations where these hinges should go with regard to the position on the door or frame.  As a general rule of thumb, hinges are usually placed approximately 18cm (or 7 inches) from the top and bottom of the door.

Open your hinge at a right angle, then lay it on the side of the door to be hung.  Mark the outside of the hinge with a pencil.


Step 7.  Chisel the Recesses on your New Door

When learning how to hang an interior door, this is probably the most complicated part.  Basically it requires some basic chisel skills.

Using a sharp chisel (about 1 inch in width), chisel a series of 1mm deep notches.  Position your chisel about 45 degrees whilst doing this.  Remember the pencil line is outside the hinge, so you need to cut inside this line.

Next you will need to remove your 1mm deep notches by chiseling from the side.

Once completed you should have a recess in the shape of your hinge.  Your hinge should sit inside it, so that it is flush with the surface of your door side.

Do the above for the other hinge.


Step 8.  Attaching Hinges to the Door  

Place the hinges into the door recess that you chiseled out in step 7.  Next drill pilot holes through the hinge holes.  You can then screw the hinges to the door using the screws provided.


Step 9.  Mark Hinge Positions on Door Frame

Next you will need to mark where your hinges will go on your door frame.  Place your door (with hinges attached) against your door frame, ensuring there is at least 5mm clearance between your floor and bottom of your door.


Step 10.  Chisel Recesses for your Door Frame

Follow the method in step 7 to chisel recesses for your door frame.  Ensure you chisel within the lines you have marked out.


Step 11.  Screw your Door to the Frame

Place your door (with hinges attached) against your door frame, so that the hinges slot into the door frame recesses.  You could prop your door up with a wooden block if it helps.

Next screw the hinges into the recesses using the screws provided.

Well done.  You have learnt how to hang an interior door! Once done the door should open and close without any issues.


Step 12.  Door Appearance

Once your door has been successfully hung, you can then work on its appearance.  People usually paint doors with satin wood, or gloss.

We hope you have enjoyed this guide on how to hang an interior door.


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Posted on 8th December 2018 at 8:30 pm

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