How to Install a Door: A Step-by-Step Guide

March 21, 2022

By: The Finished Space

Many homeowners assume that you have to hire a professional contractor to do any type of work on your home. It’s well within your right, of course, but it’s not always necessary. For instance, installing a door is something that a novice DIYer can easily do without much difficulty.

The process might seem overwhelming, but it’s actually super manageable. You just have to know where to start. That’s why we’ve created a comprehensive guide on door installations to help you get started.

Door Pre-Installation: What to Do Before You Get Started

Masonite - Cheyenne - Green Wainscot Hallway

Rushing in without a plan might lead to mistakes or wasted time and energy. Before you jump into the installation process, you need to do a couple of things first. For those who like shopping and organization, these pre-installation steps might be fun.

Go Shopping for Your New Door

This part might sound simple, but there’s a little bit of work involved. Not all doors are the same shape and size, so you need to measure your old door to ensure that you’re getting something that fits.

Once you have accurate measurements, it’s time to go shopping! There are many door varieties to choose from, including wood species, material, weight, and color. In addition, you can purchase a door with pre-installed windows, intricate carvings, or style one yourself.

Whatever you choose, pick the door that best fits the style and aesthetic of your home. Once you have your door picked out, it’s time to gather all of your tools and supplies.

Gather Your Tools and Supplies

You’re not going to be able to install the door without the proper tools and supplies. It’s better to start with everything you need than to scramble to get the necessities later. That way, once you start, you won’t have to stop until the job is done.

For tools, you’ll need; a level, drill, hammer, protective gloves, a tape measure, safety glasses, a reciprocating saw, putty knife, and potentially more, depending on how much customization you’re doing. For supplies, you’ll need the new door, the hardware (hinges, doorknobs, locks, etc.), nails, and screws.

How to Install a Door

Once you have all of your supplies and tools, it’s time to get started! Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to install a door. It’s a straightforward process, but if you have any issues, don’t hesitate to do more research and ask questions.

Step 1. Remove the Old Door

This is simple enough. To start, you need to remove the old door from the doorframe. You might keep it on-hand, so you have it for reference during the later steps.

Step 2. Locate the Bevel of the Door

Check to make sure the new door has a bevel. The narrow side of the door must face the door frame. Locating the bevel will make for a much easier installation and allow for a tight fit when the door is in a closed position.

Step 3. Mark the Hinge Placements

Take some time to measure and mark out the exact placement for your hinges. We recommend that you place the top hinge 7 inches below the top of the doorframe and the bottom hinge 7 inches above the bottom of the door frame.

If you already have a door frame in place, you’ll want to use the hinge placement that’s already there. You may have to make adjustments based on the size of the new hardware.

Step 4. Cut Out the Pre-Marked Mortise

Next, trace the outline of the hinge on the door and then router out the marked area, which is called the mortise. Remember that you need to fit the hinge inside this area, and it should be flush with the stile of door.

Step 5. Attach the Hinges

Once the mortises are cut out, place the hinges inside and attach them. Be mindful of the position in which you connect them. You want to make sure the door swings out the correct way, because a simple flipped hinge can ruin the functionality of your door.

Step 6. Align and Attach the Door

Once the hinges are attached, it’s time to set the door into the doorframe and make sure everything’s aligned. Once everything is aligned, attach the hinge one screw at a time, checking to ensure everything is still functional as you go.

Step 7. Test the Door and Make Necessary Adjustments

Before installing the final screws, test the door and make any necessary adjustments. Once you’re happy that the door is aligned and properly set, it’s time to install the last few screws and call it a day! Step back and enjoy your handiwork.

Enhance Your Door and Other Interior Features with Beautiful Decorative Moulding and Trim

Livingston Door Bedroom

Door installation steps may vary depending on the door, but this is an excellent place to start. Since you’re here, you might take some time to browse Metrie’s extensive catalog of trim and crown moulding. New moulding is the perfect addition to any home because it adds a touch of luxury and sophistication without stealing focus.

If you aren’t sure which style of moulding is right for you, check out Option {M}. It’s an innovative design tool that pairs moulding styles with popular design trends.