Tools required :- Tape measure, pencil, wood saw, hand or electric plane, workbench, dustsheet.
When you have your new internal door unwrapped and ready to be fitted, look at the top and bottom edges for a key or lock symbol that may be stamped on either the left or right end of the door edge (as shown below), the stamped symbol is there to show you which side of the door the latch and handles should be fitted.
Most internal doors have an extra wide wood block on one side to accommodate the latch and handles, if there are no symbols stamped on the edge of the door, the latch and handles will more than likely be able to be fitted on either side of the door.
Place the door against the door frame, then measure and mark how much of the door edges will need to be removed for the door to fit in the frame. You could use the old door as a template providing it was a good fit, simply place it on top of the new door and mark it out accordingly. Ideally you should have a gap of no more than 1/8″ (2mm) around the door when it is fitted. This is of course easier to sometimes say than do and depends on how square the door frame is. Remember to allow enough of a gap at the bottom of the door to clear any carpet or laminate etc.
Safety tip :- Remember to wear a face mask and safety goggles whilst using an electric plane as they emit a lot of dust and small particles when in use.
Tip :- Cut and plane the door edges from the outside in, to avoid splintering the wood.
Should you need to remove more than 1/4″ (6mm) from the edges of the door, it will be quicker to make this cut with a wood saw and then hand / electric plane the edge flat and smooth afterwards. Try to cut and plane an equal amount of wood from each side of the door, more so if the door has panels, as the side rails should be the same width from the aesthetics point of view.
Don’t plane the whole amount of wood off in one go, keep trying the door in the door frame to check its fit, it is very easy to remove the wood, but you cannot stick it back on if you have planed too much off.
When the door is cut and planed to size you are ready to continue to the next stage. (see How to mark the hinge positions on a new internal door)
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