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Interior Doors

by Don Vandervort, © HomeTips

While hinged doors come in many types, most have the same basic framework, consisting of two stiles that run vertically and two or more rails that run horizontally. The hinges are on one stile, the hinge stile; the latch and lock are on the other, the lock stile.

interior doors parts diagramPanel doors have several panels mounted between the rails and stiles; flush doors have an insulation core or filler material between the rails and stiles and a veneer that overlays the entire assembly.

Most hinged doors are attached to their frames by two or three hinges. They may be either right- or left-handed. A door that opens toward you and has the doorknob on the right is right-handed. A door hinged on the opposite side is left-handed.

The doorframe consists of jambs, casing, stops, sill, and threshold. The jambs form the sides and head of the frame; the casing acts as trim and as support for the jambs. The stops are wood strips against which the door fits when closed. (With exterior doors, a sill fits between the jambs, forming the frame bottom. The threshold, or saddle, and often weatherstripping are fastened to the sill.

For security, an exterior door’s latch plate should be mounted with screws that are at least 3 inches long so the jamb can’t be shattered for easy entry.

folding doorsFolding doors are often used to conceal a wide space where a conventional door’s swing would be cumbersome or restricted. Mounted in hinged-together pairs, folding doors combine the actions of both sliders and hinged doors, using both end pivots and overhead tracks.

bypass doorsBypass doors, often used on closets or storage areas, are lightweight indoor sliders that hang from rollers that run along an overhead track. They’re typically mounted in pairs or threes; they bypass one another to allow access.

pocket doorsPocket doors are another type of slider ideal for places where there isn’t room for a door to swing. They slide into a space or “pocket” that is installed in the wall. If you are installing a pocket door, it pays to get a high-quality model to avoid it warping or sticking in its tracks.

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