Techniques for Installing a Prehung Door Techniques for Installing a Prehung Door

A prehung door is a good choice for a new door because it comes already assembled and attached to the frame. This makes it more expensive, but gives you a much more professional look. Here are 6 techniques and tips for installing your prehung door.

1. Start with the Correct Tools and Supplies

First, no project can be started without the proper tools and supplies. Tools you may need are a level, tape measure, screwdriver, hammer, nails, screws, caulking gun, and wood shims. These can be bought at any hardware store.

2. Make Sure You Get the Right Door

It’s vital to get a prehung door that fits and swings the right direction. For instance, if you want the door to open to the right, get a door with the door knob on the right side. Next, measure the doorway where the door will hang. Get a door that is 1 inch less than the width and the length of the doorway, as well as 1 inch longer than the thickness of the wall that is next to the frame. It should also be painted, so it won’t warp.

3. Setting up the Door

Make sure your prehung door isn’t missing any parts. Then, carefully set it up in the doorway by putting the bottom in first, then lifting the rest into place. Be sure not to let it fall through. Next, it must be centered and fit properly into the doorway.

4. Proper Installation of the Door

A prehung door has a 1/8 inch gap between the edges of the door and the jamb itself. You need a ½ inch of space between the bottom and the floor or carpet underneath it. You have to be careful to get the spacing right, or your prehung door will rub against your floor or you could have a big space in between that you really don’t want. 

Use your level to make sure the door is even against the floor and the wall. If you need to fill in the space to make it work, that’s where the wood shims will be used. Place as many wood shims as it takes to make your door level.  Use nails to keep the wood shims in place. A 10-penny nail is best. After you have nailed down the shims, cut off any extra that extends out past the doorway.

Be sure that both the bottom of the door and the hinge side are sitting even with your doorway and that it opens and closes easily.

5. Making the Installation Secure and Permanent

After the door jamb is centered and leveled off, it’s time to make the installation of your prehung door permanent. Do this by putting screws through the shims to make it stronger. Make sure not to put too much pressure on it because you don’t want to warp the door.

6. Insulation

Now that your door is installed, make sure it is insulated. This saves you money on heating and cooling bills. Insulate it by putting caulk around all the joints and by installing weather stripping. 

Congratulations, your prehung door is in place and ready for use.

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