How to Hang Internal Doors

Once you’ve purchased your perfect internal door, the next job is getting them hung. This is a process that can intimidate some people, and often has them calling on support without even considering attempting it themselves.

But should you tackle this task yourself? It will usually be the more cost-effective option but this is not the only fact to consider.

How easy is it to hang internal doors?

Hanging internal doors should be possible for someone experienced at DIY. The techniques involved are relatively simple, from drilling holes to taking exact measurements. The need for specialist tools is minimal too. If you have a plane to trim your door and a drill/screwdriver you should be set.

It is easier to replace an internal door than it is to hang a new one, as you can use the old door as a guide for measuring and positioning hinges. It also means you won’t have to change the door frames, as they will be still be set up from the last door.

Hanging interior doors is a DIY job that requires a lot of strength. The size and weight of doors make them awkward to manouvere and you would be advised to find someone to help you.

If you are starting completely from scratch, it will be a slightly more difficult job. And if you have a complete raw opening and have to fit the door frame too, you may want to enlist the help of a professional as you may need specialist tools.

How much does it cost to hang internal doors?

If you do decide to go with a professional to install your internal door, the cost can vary dramatically depending on what type of door it is. The material and the design will both have an impact. A heavier door, like a solid oak one, will cost more than a hollowcore door as it will be more awkward to move around and adjust so it will take longer.

In general the cost of having a specialist install your door can vary from £50-£150 but this is obviously dependent on the type of door, how many you need installing and how much work needs doing on the frame etc.

There are plenty of benefits to paying a professional to do the work though.

It might not be difficult work, but installing a door can be physically demanding which makes it hard. And you also need to be very precise in your measurements and usage of tools – mistakes of even millimetres could have a significant impact.

Bringing in a carpenter to hang an internal door is one way to remove the hassle and ensure that your door is hung correctly and functions well. However, if you would like to tackle the job yourself it is far from impossible.

Preparing to Hang Internal Doors

There are a couple of things you should do before you even start to hang your internal doors.

A few days before you plan to hang your doors, move them into the room. Wood can shrink and expand under different conditions, so this will give them a chance to acclimatise before they are hung. Otherwise, you may need to remove them to trim again at a later date.

The next thing you should do is measure your doors to identify if they need any trimming. Differences in frames and fitting will probably mean your doors need altering and this is the most convenient time to do it.

Measure the doorway in six points, left, centre, right and top, middle, bottom. Your door will need to be cut down to fit the narrowest width and shortest height. Now measure your door. To make life easier, if you are removing an older door you can use this as a template, though take care not to damage your new door in the process.

If your new door does need trimming, our page on internal door sizes has a guide to help.

Another step you will need to take if your doors are unfinished or primed is finishing them. Whether you’re painting, varnishing or staining your doors, it is recommended you add the paint before you hang the doors as this will stop them from absorbing any moisture while they are waiting to be hung. Even if you have finished doors, it is important to seal any sides you may have trimmed and left raw. For advice on how to paint doors, take a look at our fact sheet.

After all this is done, it is time to collect your tools and start the job of hanging your internal doors.

How to Hang An Interior Door

Tools

  • Mallet
  • 25mm Chisel
  • Drill
  • Hinges
  • Screwdriver
  • Screws
  • Pencil
  1. Measure the hinge positions

Once you know your door is the right size, get started by measuring where the hinges will sit. If you are just replacing an internal door, you can do this using the position of the previous hinges for guidance.

  1. Make space for the hinges

Once the position is marked off, check the depth of the hinge plate. Mark that on the door too and use a hammer and chisel to make a recess for the hinge to sit in so it is flush with the door surface. Take your time doing this, making lots of small cuts instead of big ones to make sure you don’t split the wood or remove too much

  1. Attach the hinges

When you know where to put them, drill pilot holes for the hinges as this will stop the wood splitting when you add the screws.

Attach the ‘leaf’ side of the hinge to the door. Use a screwdriver if necessary to make sure the heads of the screw are completely flush with the door.

  1. Hang the door

Position the door in place (propped up so that it is the correct position in the frame) and put the bottom screw into all the hinges. This should be enough to temporarily support the door while you give it a gentle swing to see if clears the carpet and closes properly. If it does, then pop the rest of the screws in.

If it doesn’t, remeasure the door to see if it needs trimming again.