A Comprehensive Guide On How To Measure For A New Door

No one wants to end up with an ill-fitting door. Whether you are working on a new construction or replacing an existing door, it is important to have the correct door measurements for a seamless new door installation. Having an idea of how to measure for doors not only ensures proper door function after installation but also helps you save time and avoid any costly mistakes.

To make sure that you buy the right door for your project, it is recommended that you consider the door’s dimensions as well as how it opens – i.e. door swing. Continue reading below for a detailed guide on how to measure for new doors.

Measuring for the New Door Only

In addition to the door, a door system also includes a frame and jamb. In some cases, you don’t have to replace the entire system. If you only need to replace the door, leaving the rest of the setup intact, your work is easier. In this case, you can even measure the existing door while it is still in place.

Armed with a tape measure, take the height measurement of the existing door. It is recommended that you measure the door at three points, both edges and the middle. The height of the door should be noted down as the tallest measurement of the three.

It is important to note that the door sweep should not be included in this height measurement. In most cases, the average door height for exterior and interior doors is around 80 and 79 inches.

To measure the width, take three separate measurements – at the bottom, middle and top. This should be done on both sides of the door. The width of the door should be noted down as the widest measurement here. While the width of interior doors may vary, the average measurement for exterior doors is around 36 inches.

Lastly, you will need to measure the thickness of the door. The average thickness of an exterior door is 1¾ inches, while that of an interior door is 1⅜ inches. You’re now ready to buy a new door slab.

Image is of a man using a tape measure for a new door.

Measuring the Entire Door System

If you have a damaged door frame or jamb or are looking to upgrade your door’s style and look, it is best to replace the entire setup with a new door system. Instead of taking measurements of the door as described above, you will need to determine the dimensions of the frame and sill in the case of exterior doors. For interior doors, you will need to measure the jamb.

  1. Start by removing the trim from around one side of the door frame or jamb using a stiff blade putty knife or pry bar.
  2. Use your tape measure to establish the width of the door jamb, from the outer edge of one side to the outer edge of the opposite side. Remember to take three separate measurements – at the bottom, middle and top sections. The widest of these measurements should be noted down as the door unit’s width.
  3. Without including any trim pieces or brickmould, measure the frame’s depth, from the inner to the outer edge.
  4. Move on to the door frame’s height. Just like the above cases, you should take three separate measurements, and then use the largest one.
    • You should measure from the top edge of the horizontal door jamb to the bottom of the threshold (or vice versa) – when it comes to exterior doors. The measurement should always run to the bottom of the threshold – especially considering that most properties will have interior flooring that comes up to this section. You must take a separate sill measurement if the flooring is covering the part you want to measure.
    • When it comes to interior doors the measurement should cover the height from the top of the horizontal door jamb to the floor.
  5. Without including any interior trim, take a measurement of the door jamb depth from the inner to the outer edge. In most cases, this measure should equal the thickness of the wall – excluding any siding and trim.
  6. As previously mentioned, you will also need to determine the new door swing. This consists of two main components inswing or outswing and right or left hand.

To determine whether you have a left- or right-hand door, start by standing with your back against the hinges while the door is open. Without moving from this position, mimic the way the door swings using your hand. The door is left hand if you open your left arm and right hand if you open your right arm.

You will also notice that your hand either went into or out of a room. The door is outswing if your arm goes out of the room and inswing if it goes inside.

Contact Family Windows & Doors for Quality New Doors & Services

After you have all the measurements in hand, head over to Family Windows & Doors for the highest quality doors and services. Our seasoned installers can also help you with your new door installation or replacement project.

We have years of experience in new door and window installations. Call 864-982-0957 today to speak to one of our friendly and knowledgeable door installation specialists or to schedule a free in-home consultation.