how to measure a door jamb

Woman standing In Front Of Her Doorway About To Take Measurements
Tools Needed
1 Paper
2 Pen
3 Pencil
4 Tape Measure
Materials Needed
1 Level
2 Safety Spotter
3 Ladder
4 Safety Glasses
Total Cost
$5-$10
Find a handyman
Estimated Time
5-10 Minutes
Skill Level: Beginner
The total cost and duration may vary when hiring a handyman!

Project Overview

person holding a tape measure across the width of a door slab

There are many reasons you might need to know the measurements of your door jamb. Maybe your are putting up new trim, or if you need to replace a door, you will want a snug fit and will need to know the measurements of your door jamb. Knowing the correct measurements of your door jamb is important so that you are able to order the correct door and frame size for your replacement.  You want to make sure that you get all of the dimensions needed, and you want these measurements to be as precise as possible.

Step-By-Step Instructions

1

Draw a Sketch

Before you start measuring, prepare yourself by grabbing a sheet of paper and a pen. If drawing makes you uncomfortable, you could also just print a picture from your computer. You want to use paper and get a visual because you need to be sure you are able to remember the exact measurements. Remember that you will be taking more than one measurement so it could get a little confusing, and if you are measuring so that you can replace something, you want to make sure your measurements are correct and as precise as possible.

Now, look at the door, and draw a rough sketch of the frame. Remember that this does not have to be perfect since it is just for your use. This sketch will give you an easy place to keep track of the measurements. Don’t just write the measurements where they belong on the sketch, but also label the measurements, like jam width, height, etc. This will minimize the possibility for any confusion.

2

Record Additional Details

Take notice and make sure that you are not including anything extra in your measurements. Take note of any door sweeps. Make sure that you are not including them in your measurements. Also, make sure you are not measuring any trim or weatherstripping. Just measure the jamb, nothing else. Other details you might want to consider are if this is right hand or left hand door and if it swings out or in.

3

Measure the Width of the Door Jamb

cross section of a door in a frame

Measure the jamb from side to side without including the trim. You want to measure the width three times to make sure you get the best possible measurement. On the diagram you drew in step 1, write the measurement. Once you have recorded it, round the measurement to the nearest inch, and write this number in parentheses beside the precise measurement. First measure the width at the top of the jamb, then the middle, and then the bottom. When you have taken all three measurements, take the lowest one and use it as your final measurement.

4

Measure the Height

person standing on the outside of their front door and measuring the height

Now, it is time to measure the height of the frame. To do this, you need two measurements. To take the first measurement, you will measure from the top left corner of the door all the way down to the bottom left corner on the floor. Record this measurement on your diagram. Next, measure the right side the exact same way, from the top right corner to the bottom right corner. Again, round both of these numbers to the nearest inch, and record them the same way you did the width of the door jamb. Take the lowest number, and use it to ensure you get a tight, insulated fit. If these measurements have a large difference, then now is probably a good time to check to see if your current door is crooked or if your floor is uneven.

5

Measure the Jamb Width

The final measurement you will need is the door jamb width, or wall thickness. Again, make sure that you do not measure any trim or other materials that are not the jamb itself. To measure the door jamb width, measure from the back of the interior piece of trim to the back side of the exterior. This measurement is important when replacing doors because the wrong sized jamb is pretty obvious. If the jamb is too small, your sheetrock will be exposed. If it is too thick, it will have to be trimmed down so that it doesn’t stick out.

Conclusion

Although measuring the dimensions of your door is not very difficult, you want to ensure you measure the right parts of the door and jamb, and you want to be sure you measure them correctly. You want to be careful, be precise, and take multiple measurements so that you do not purchase or order the incorrect sized door just because you were rushed. No matter what reason you have for measuring your door, you can be sure that you will measure correctly and precisely by following these steps.

How To Measure A Door Jamb

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Questions And Answers

Is a steel or fiberglass door better?
Fiberglass doors and steel doors are both great doors. If struck hard enough a fiberglass door can crack, steel does not. Other than that, these doors are both really great options. Steel is the more affordable of the two but fiberglass may be slightly better in all other aspects.
How do you fix a door frame?
To fix a door frame, you must first take off the broken part. You will then nail in the new frame, place the door stop, put the strike plate in and install the molding. This project does not take very long for most people.
What is a good feng shui color for the front door?
Your entry door, in feng shui, is how your house is able to receive energy for nourishment. The energy quality determines the energy that your home has. Often, the color you choose is based on the direction in which your door faces. For example, North, South, West, East.
What does it mean to have a black door?
If you have black door, that signifies great things about you and your home. It can stand for authority, power, sophistication and strength. Anyone who goes by or comes over will know you are serious about protecting your home and your family members too.
Can you paint a vinyl front door?
Yes. You could paint your vinyl front door. However, you need to complete the adhesion process first. Once you have prepared the door, you can use an additive or primer, to assure the job is done properly.
What is the best color for a front door?
There is some logic, along with some science, in color selection. A color wheel is the best place for you to start choosing your color. You can mix various colors quickly and easily to find the perfect color scheme for your entry door and the exterior of your home.
What color should your front door be if it is facing north?
If your door is facing North, feng shui colors for your door are as follows: blue, white, black, and gray. You should avoid the color of deep pink, purple, orange, yellow, green, red, and brown on a front door that facing North.
How much does it cost to replace a front door?
Most durable and long-lasting doors will cost between $500 and $700. However, the price will change due to several factors. These factors include material, whether you have someone install the door for you, brand, type of doors and a couple other things.
What is the best color to paint your front door?
Most importantly, you want the color of your door to blend with the rest of the exterior. White and red seem to be the most commonly used colors for a front door. After red and white, it is found that is brown, blue, and green come next in popularity.
What color to paint a north facing front door?
The two best colors for a north facing front door are gray and white. You could also paint this door black, blue, gray or white. You should not paint a north facing front door purple, red, yellow, brown, green, pink or orange.
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