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Replacing interior doors... pre-hung or just the door?

Replacing interior doors... pre-hung or just the door?


  #1  
Old 03-31-03, 06:02 PM
UnHeardOf
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Unhappy Replacing interior doors... pre-hung or just the door?

I want to upgrade my existing flat interior doors with 6 panel interior doors. Should I replace them w/pre-hung doors or just replace the door itself? Which is easiest to do? Iím mechanically inclined, however donít have the tricks of the trade on my side.

I'm considering hiring this out, where should I start in finding a reputable person or company that will do this fairly inexpensively? I'm located in Orange County, CA 92604.

Thanks in advance.
 
  #2  
Old 04-01-03, 03:16 PM
texdiyguy
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That's kind of a trick question. If you buy just the doors, you are going to have to mortise them for the hinges and bore for the lock. The mortising CAN be done with just a utility knife and a sharp chisel but requires very careful measurements since you'll be mating to the half of the hinge on the jamb. Of course, a router and hinge template would make it a lot easier.

If you get pre-hung doors, you'll have to carefully remove the casing (so that you can re-use it) or figure on installing new casing. You could have problems disturbing the flooring (vinyl or ceramic tile) in that you would have some difficulty aligning the new jams exactly where the old jams were so that you don't have gaps at the floor.

If it were me, I would replace only the doors even if I were using a utility knife and chisel. If you replace everything you run the risk of damaging the adjacent wall (especially if the casings are painted and the joint between the wall and casing is caulked - be sure to cut through the caulk with a utility knife if you go this route). Also, you'll have many nail holes to fill and caulking to do (if you will be painting them).
 
  #3  
Old 04-01-03, 03:36 PM
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If it were me, I would just replace the doors.

Check with the local lumber yards, some will cut the doors to size, drill the holes for the door knobs and mortise the hinges for you. (At a cost of course)
This may require you taking your doors to them so they can get good measurements. So you will want to mark which door came from which room and have them do the same.

Of course if you want to do them yourself, you can. Just remember to measure twice and cut once!!! If you drill the hole for the door knob in the wrong place, you can only throw that door away and start over. Use it to make a table out of
 
  #4  
Old 04-01-03, 05:41 PM
UnHeardOf
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Fantasic! Thank you so much for the very insightful (and detailed) information. I will be replacing the doors only. This forum is awesome!
 
  #5  
Old 04-01-03, 06:44 PM
W
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Hi, This may help.



On your new door decide what is the top of the door. Example on a six panel door the small panels go to the top. On a slab door the top may be marked if it isnít then it will make no difference.
I have hung about 100 doors as a repair not construction. I will try to help you as best as I can.
With your old door in place check the fit. Most fits are OK. Fit is the reveal on the top bottom and sides of the door. With the old door still in place mark it top and back. The back is the side with the hinge pins. Mark the new door top and back this is for your reference it is very easy to get turned around doing this. Pull the pins on the old door and remove all the hardware including the hinge leafs. Do not remove hinge leafs on the door jamb. Measure the old door and cut the new one to that length be careful not to splinter the new door, score the door or clamp a piece of scrap wood on the side where the saw blade leaves the wood.
Set the old door on the side with the hinge mortise up. Line up the new door at the top of the old one. The back of one should be against the front of the other. With a combo square scribe the mortise of the old door to the new door. Now take one of the hinge leafs and trace the hinge between the mortise lines you just drew remember the pins on the hinge go to the back of the door. The hinge leaf is probably marked on the back side from paint or varnish, use this line to guide you when tracing the hinge. An interior door is 1 3/8ĒThe hinge will set about 1 1/4Ē across the door. Use a router to cut out the mortise if you use a chisel be careful cut only across the grain of the door style or you will split it.
Install the leafs on the new door with only one screw on each leaf make sure to drill a pilot hole for the screw or you WILL SPLIT the door. If the door has 3 hinges , leave the middle one off until you fit the door.
Place the new door in the jamb put the top pin in first then the bottom pin, you may have to adjust the bottom leaf a little tap it up or down to make it fit. Thatís why I use only one screw at first. With both pins installed, drill your pilot holes and put in the rest of screws in the top and bottom hinges.
Put a screw on the front of the door where the knob will go, you need the screw to pull the door closed so you can mark the door where it hits the jamb. Remove the strike plate off the door jamb. With a pencil mark the door where it hits the jamb. Remove the door and plane down to the line, take your time. You may have to mark the door 2 or 3 times to get the fit.
With a pencil, mark on the back side door casing, the center of the hole located on the door jamb used for the door lock Close the door and transfer the mark to the door. With a combo square use that mark to scribe a line on both sides of door about 3Ē long and across the style.
Now find the back set of the lock you are using. A new lock will tell you, if you use the old lock, measure the old door from the edge to the center of the hole. 2 3/8Ē and 2 3/4 are common sizes. Measure also the size of the hole you will need 2 1/8ííis common.
If the back set is 2 3/8. On the line you drew on the door make a mark 2 3/8 on each side of the door. If the hole is 2 1/8, use a 2 1/8 hole saw, cut half way through the door and finish the cut from the other side do not plunge straight through you will splinter the door. Mark the center of style and drill a hole to fit the door latch use a small as possible hole to fit the latch you donít have much room to spare. Some latches need to be mortised to fit if this is the case put the latch in the hole and trace the face of it then remove the needed amount of wood and install it. Remember to drill pilot holes. Install the lockset and the third hinge if needed. Now wasnít that easy?

Good Luck, Woodbutcher
 
  #6  
Old 04-02-03, 04:42 AM
C
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Woodbutcher,

These are probably the best instructions I have seen on how to do this.
 
  #7  
Old 04-02-03, 08:26 AM
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Great job, Woodbutcher!

One added comment, since you did the hard part! Not common, but it does happen, if the new door is quite abit longer than the old door. I believe, there is only about 1 3/8" of bracing running across the top and bottom of the door, so if you have to take off more than that you will need to replace these braces. Make sure you cut off equal distantances frome the top and bottom of the door. Or if you remove all of the cut from the bottom of the door, you do two things. 1) you weaken the door considerably and it will come apart later down the road. 2) You will place the panels off-center.

Again, Woodbutcher.....fantastic job. I know if you type like I do, it took you some time to type that all out!! Thanks for your knowledge and time!
 
  #8  
Old 04-02-03, 06:01 PM
W
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Location: San Diego Ca. USA
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Gentlemen,
Thank You for the kind words. It does take me a long time for me to type things. On the paper on hanging doors, I typed it and saved it in a file. I paste it in when needed.
Nestor told me how to copy and paste.

Thank You Woodbutcher
 
 

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