Whether you’re redecorating your home or have just moved house, fitting new doors may sound like a difficult task. By following a few crucial guidelines though, it’s relatively simple DIY.
Read our step-by-step advice to make replacing an internal door straightforward and quick. Before you start, you’ll need to remove your existing door from the frame. Also, make sure your new door is acclimatised to your home, allowing for any expansion or contraction; lay it on a flat surface for three days before starting.
- Standard internal door
- Workbench and g-clamps
- Circular saw
- Bevelled edge chisel
- Wooden door wedges
- Tape measure
Step 1: Measure the height
Your new door may not fit perfectly so stand the door against the frame to measure it. Pencil mark the top of your door opening on your door. Secure your door to your workbench and transfer the measurement to the bottom of your door. You’ll also need to add around 3mm extra to that measurement to allow for clearance (depending on your carpet’s thickness). Cut away this excess from the bottom of the door using a circular saw. You’ll then need to trim another 3mm from the top of your door for clearance.
Step 2: Measure the Width
Now check the width of your door against the frame in the same way. You’ll need to equally split any excess measurement across the left and right of your door; for example, if your door is 10mm too wide, cut 5mm from each side. Don’t forget to add an additional 3mm each side for clearance.
Step 3: Arrange the Hinges
Your door should now fit your frame with an outline of 3mm to spare, so it’s time to put the hinges in place. Stand your door in the frame using wooden wedges to secure it at the bottom, before marking the position of the existing three hinges on your door. If there are no existing hinge markings, the top hinge should be positioned around 170-180mm from the top. The bottom hinge should be positioned around 190-200mm from the bottom, with the third hinge placed midway between the top and bottom hinges. Laying your door flat on the workbench, hold a hinge up to each marked position and draw an outline. Then measure the hinge plate thickness against the side of your markings.
Step 4: Screw the Hinges In
Use your chisel to cut around the outline of your hinge markings. Holding the chisel at a 45-degree angle, make stepped vertical cuts every 5mm within your hinge outline to match the thickness of the plate. With the flat side of your chisel, gently hammer out the rectangle for your hinge plate to fit in. Hold your hinge in place as a guide and drill pilot holes in the door. Now you can screw each hinge plate in place.
Step 5: Secure the Door to the Frame
Fit your door into the door frame, holding it open to 90 degrees. Align your hinges and put a screw through the bottom hole of the top plate. Repeat on the bottom plate. Add a third screw to the top hole of the top plate. Before you fit all of your screws, check your door swings smoothly into the frame – you may need to sand the wood down slightly first.