I am trying to find a door to replace one of my bedroom doors. The problem I have is that all the interior doors in my house measure 29-1/2" x 80". They are all hollow core 6 panel doors and look very much like a pre fab product with no signs of any custom sizing. Yet I am unable to find any doors to replace them at any store or online. Am I crazy or just that ignorant when it comes to this area home maintenance? Any advice will be appreciated.
Hello and thank you for joining our How to Community.
Quick question first;
Is 29-1/2 “x80” slab or a door measurement?
Slab is the operating part of the unit only and a door is the slab + the side jambs (frame).
29 1-2”slab would be matched to a 30” door (unit)...
I've purchased both the 28" and 30"sizes, in hopes that one would work...no luck.
Am I going to have to buy a comlete prehung door?
No you don’t HAVE to buy one. However, considering tools needed and work involved, fitting a new slab, it might be EASIER if you were to buy one and replace a complete unit.
Let me explain;
Right now you have a “non standard” 30” door/slab. To replace a non standard slab you would need to purchase a standard replacement non-mortised 30” slab. Non- mortised means that there is no bore (hole) for the lock and no slots for the hinges – so basically it’s a plain slab. This new replacement slab (non-mortised) it’s going to be slightly bigger than your existing slab, actually to be precise it’s going to be 5/8” of an inch wider and ½” an inch taller.
This said you would need to rip a new slab for 5/8” of an inch and cut it down for ½” an inch to match your old slab. But it’s not that simple. You can cut ½” an inch from the bottom or top of the slab but you should not rip all 5/8” from one side of the slab. Why?
With hollow doors, side rails – section that it’s getting ripped down, its only 1-1/4” wide and if you were to cut 5/8” of one side of the door you would structurally weaken it. So to get this slab to last, 5/8” should be taken from both sides of the slab.
Once the door is cut to match the old door, next step would be to cut the hinge slots. For the hinge slots you can use existing hinges or the old door as a template. Once the hinge slots are cut next step would be to hang a door, test to see if it closes right, scribing a lock hole (with the door closed) ,taking it down ,boring a lock hole and hanging it back up with the lock installed.
To make this all easier to grasp I’ve attached two videos in this post. One video demonstrates how to cut hinge slots and the other one how to cut a hole for the lockset.
I know this can be overwhelming for an inexperienced DIY-er ,but if you’re comfortable using power tools (saw and drill) we'll be here to help with every step along the way.
Or like mentioned at the beginning of this post, you can buy a prehung door and replace the old completely. This still may require use of some power tools but it would not entail as much work as changing the slab would.
Hope this helps.
Thanks for all the information. I am now armed with all the information I need. Now I'm off to Home Depot to buy my third and final door!