How to install a new front door

How to install a new front door

It’s time to replace the front entry door with something more attractive, energy efficient and safe. Do you know what to do?

Many people today opt for pre-hung models when upgrading their front doors. A pre-hung door comes equipped with the jamb, the sill, hinges and all necessary hardware.

1. Order the new door. You first will need to measure the width and height of your existing door, rounding up to the next inch. Then, measure the jamb width from the backside of the interior trim to the backside of the exterior trim. You’ll also want to measure the area with the trim removed.

2. Remove the existing door. Most doors have three hinges from which you need to slide out the hinge pins by tapping from the bottom in an upward motion, using a hammer and nail. You may want to protect the floor with a drop cloth before starting.

3. Remove the old door jamb and replace with the new one. To ensure a good fit for the door, you will want to make sure the jamb is centered, level, and kept in place using shims. Once everything is placed, you can nail the jamb to the wall studs through the pre-drilled holes. Make sure you complete one side of the jamb before moving on to another.

4. Recheck the jamb. Though it may have appeared centered and level before you secured it, the jamb may have shifted slightly. Even a slight shift can prevent the door from closing properly.

5. Secure the hinges to the jamb. The best way to do this is by using three-inch deck screws.

6. Hang the door. Move the door’s hinges into the hinge on the jamb, and tap the hinge pins through in a downward motion with a hammer.

7. Test the door. Once your new front door is in place, make sure it has a nice, weather-tight fit and doesn’t run into any resistance when you open and close it.

Installing a new front door is not for everyone, and it does require a great deal of strength to lift one onto the hinges. Angie’s List has trusted consumer reviews on more than 1,400 door installers in the Portland area that would be more than happy to assist in the process.

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