If you are buying wooden door frame for your residential project or your apartment, you need to check several things. So that you won’t face any problem during installation the door and finishing work.
First, you need to understand what is a door frame.
What is a door frame?
A Wooden door is consists of two parts. One is door frame and another is door shutter. The door frame is fixed in a masonry wall before plaster and tiles work.
Once plaster and tiles work is done then door shutter is fixed to the door frame.
A door frame is wrapped on three sides of door shutter.
Again, the door frame is consists of three parts – Two vertical parts and one horizontal part.
The vertical parts are called “Jamb” and the horizontal part, which sits on vertical parts, is called “Head“.
For your knowing, PVC and some other types of door come as a package. That means door frame and door shutter are combined. You don’t need to install them separately. But, for wooden door, it normally comes separately.
So, what you should check before buying a wooden door frame.
What to check when you buy a wooden door frame?
You should check follow things before buying a wooden door frame –
1. Check length of door frame
The length of door frame should not be less than 7′-0′.
When we keep a door rough opening in a masonry wall, we keep the height of that opening 7′-1½’. So, we can fix 7 feet long door frame easily in the opening.
If you buy a door frame less than 7 feet long you’ll face problem during installing floor tiles. Because the bottom of door frame should not be left above the floor tiles. It should be inside the floor tiles.
See the image below. You have only ½” left inside the floor tiles. If you buy less than 7 feet long door frame, there is a possibility to come up the door frame above the floor tiles.
So check the length of both Jambs if it is 7 feet long or not.
2. Check width of wooden door frame
We use different door size for different rooms of an apartment. For example,
- Bedroom door width: 3′-4′ (40′)
- Bathroom door width: 2′-6″ (30″)
- Kitchen door width: 3′-0″ (36″)
At least, in the architectural drawing, these door widths are shown for different rooms.
So, check the width of wooden door frames all through.
3. Check the thickness of head and jamb
The thickness of Jamb and Head is 2½” (we normally use). So, check the thickness is accurate. If the thickness is less than 2½”, there is no technical problem. But, you need to make sure, you are getting what you paid for.
4. Check the width of head and jamb
This is very important. We normally use 6” width of Head and Jamb.
But, if you plan to fix tiles on the wall then you have to use 6½” width for Head and Jamb. This normally happens in bathroom and kitchen. Because we fix tiles on bathroom and kitchen wall.
Let me explain.
Normally, we plaster on both sides of a wall. Now, let’s calculate the thickness of the wall after plastering.
The thickness of a brick wall before plastering is 4½”, as the width of a brick is 4½”.
If we consider ¾” plaster for each side then the wall thickness after plastering will be 6” (¾“ + 4½” + 3/4“ = 6”).
If we use 6” width for Jamb and Head of the door frame, then the door frame and wall plaster will be in the same alignment.
If the wall plaster comes up above the door frame, it looks ought. So, our aim is to keep the door frame and wall plaster on the same alignment.
Now let’s consider a door frame for a bathroom.
We fix tiles inside the bathroom and on the opposite side of the wall will be plaster. So, the thickness of the wall after plastering and fixing tiles will be 6½”. As,
The plaster thickness is ¾”
Tiles thickness with mortar is 1¼”, and
The brick width is 4½”.
So, total thickness of the wall will be,
=¾” + 1¼” + 4½”
If you allow the Jamb and Head width for your door frame less than 6½”, either plaster or tiles will come up on the door frame. That should not be allowed.
5. Check rabbit to rabbit distance
Rabbit to Rabbit distance depends on the width of door shutter. Available door shutter width in the market are 27”, 30”, 33”, 36”, 39”, etc.
Suppose, we will use 27” width of door shutter for a bathroom. So, the rabbit to rabbit distance of the door frame should be 26½”. So that, you can fix 27” width door shutter in the gap.
If the distance is more than 27”, you won’t be able to fix 27” wide door shutter in the gap.
6. Check if the design on door frame is straight and Sharp
If your door frame has some design on it, check those designs are straight and Sharp. If some portions of the design are damaged, it will destroy the aesthetic looks of your door. It normally happens due to manufacturing defects.
7. Check the straightness of every side of your door frame
Every side of door frame should be truly straight. Otherwise, you’ll face problems fixing door shutter and wall plastering.
If every side of door frames is not straight, when you plaster on the wall, some portion of plaster will be come up on the door frame. It will decrease the aesthetic look of the room.
Another example, if the inside face of the door is not straight and truly vertical, you will face problem during fixing door shutter.
If you check door frames properly, as I described in this post, it will save you from many hassles during finishing work of your apartment.
Did I miss anything to check or do you want to add any point to check on door frames? Please add this in the comments below.