Measuring Replacement Doors Like a Pro

Shopping for New Doors in Ottawa Starts with a Tape Measure

So you need a new door. Unfortunately, not all doors are made in a single universal size, or it’d just be a simple matter of picking out the one you like best and installing it (or having a professional do it). While some sizes are more common than others, it’s best to be on the safe side and take down the measurements and other details before you go shopping for replacement doors.

But how does one measure a door? You might think it’s as simple as taking out the measuring tape, but not quite. There are a number of details that you’ll want to be aware of before looking for new doors in Ottawa. Here are some tips to get a better measurement:

Measure the Door Itself

The first, and most obvious step, is to measure the door. You’ll need to take three main measurements: the height (top to bottom), the width (left to right), and the edge (front to back). For each of these, take three measurements from three different points—you’ll be surprised to see that there are subtle variations. Record the smallest of the three measurements. Next, go to the side with the hinges, and measure the distance from the top of the door to the top of each hinge, and record your findings. Finally, remove the door handle and, if applicable, the deadbolt, and measure the distance from both the top and the edge of the door to the centre of the hole.

Measure the Jamb

Not sure what the jamb is? According to Ottawa’s door experts, this is the wooden frame that surrounds the door. It’s important when measuring for replacement doors not to measure any of the decorative features such as the trim, which exists to mask where the jamb meets the wall. If you look closely at the frame, you can see where the trim is attached to the jamb—when measuring the thickness of the jamb, only include the space between the trim pieces.

Measure the Frame

Measure the height and width of the inside of the door frame. When you do this, be sure to measure from the floor especially if there’s a sweep on the threshold), and to ignore any trim, weather stripping, or other features.

Record the Swing and Direction

These details are considered as they appear on the exterior of the door—i.e. if it’s your front door, you would do this from the front porch, not the hallway. The swing refers to whether the door opens inwards or outwards, and the direction of the door refers to the side that the hinges are on. For example, if the hinges are on the left and the door opens inwards, it’s a right-hand door with an inward swing. Unless you want to do the extra work associated with changing this, your replacement doors should always be oriented the same way.

See a Professional

Once you have all these details, you can visit the experts on doors in Ottawa to let them help you pick out a door that meets your requirements. You can even get them to come in at the beginning and take your measurements to ensure that you get the best and most accurate results possible.

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