How to determine hinge spacing on a door

Written by cameron easey
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When you buy a new door to replace an existing one, you need to properly mark the location of the hinges before they can be installed. The hinges on most doors need to be a specific distance from the top of thee door jamb and the bottom. You can determine the proper placement and spacing by taking accurate measurements of the existing hinges, if applicable.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Tape measure
  • Pencil

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Instructions

    New Door and New Jamb

  1. 1

    Measure from the inside top of the door jamb down 5 1/8 inches and make a mark with a pencil.

  2. 2

    Measure from the bottom of the door jamb up 10 1/8 inches and mark with a pencil.

  3. 3

    Place the hinge on the top mark so that the top of the hinge is on the mark. Trace around the hinge with a pencil to draw an outline.

  4. 4

    Place the hinge on the bottom mark so that the top of the hinge is on the mark. Trace around the hinge with a pencil to draw an outline.

  5. 5

    Measure from the top of the door down 5 1/8 inches and make a mark with a pencil.

  6. 6

    Measure from the bottom of the door up 10 1/8 inches and make a mark with a pencil.

  7. 7

    Place the hinge on the top mark of the door so that the top of the hinge is on the mark. Trace around the hinge with a pencil to draw an outline for the hinge.

  8. 8

    Place the hinge on the bottom mark of the door so that the top of the hinge is on the mark. Trace around the hinge with a pencil to draw an outline for the hinge.

    Existing Door and Jamb

  1. 1

    Measure down from the inside top of the door jamb to the top of the existing hinges with a tape measure. Alternatively, you can measure down from the top of the door to the existing hinges.

  2. 2

    Measure up from the bottom of the door jamb to the top of the existing hinges with a tape measure. Alternatively, you can measure from the bottom of the door to the top of the existing hinges.

  3. 3

    Transfer the measurements to the new door and make marks with a pencil.

  4. 4

    Place the hinge on the top mark so that the top of the hinge is on the mark. Trace around the hinge with a pencil to draw an outline.

  5. 5

    Place the hinge on the bottom mark so that the top of the hinge is on the mark. Trace around the hinge with a pencil to draw an outline.

Tips and warnings

  • The top and bottom hinges are not placed on the door at the same distance from top to bottom.
  • A small gap of about 1/8 of an inch will be needed so the door can open and close without sticking to the door jamb or the floor.

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