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Install & Replace

Interior door installation "flip"

I just bought a house, and need to "flip" a door so that it hinges from the right instead of the left. It currently opens into the guest bathroom and blocks the light switch and mirror/sink area. It makes much more sense to have it open the other way so it opens to the wall on the other side.


The hinges are currently embedded in the door frame (it looks like the remodelers bought a standard door frame). I assume I will be able to take the door off and flip it so I can re-use the door and hinges, but I will have to use a dremel tool to embed the hinge on the right. Any recommendations for  how to cut the hole for the door knob latch on left side?


I am a first-time homeowner and am brand new to home repairs.. help! Any advice is appreciated!

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Posted 2013-03-11T20:32:08+0000  by alyssaw alyssaw


Hi Alyssaw,


You can flip the door; however the door handle will be higher on the flipped door than on the other doors in the house.


Door handles are usually 34-38 inches off the floor; with the door flipped the handle will be 2-3 inches higher than before. The old hinge holes will have to be filled in as well as the hole for the door latch on the opposite side.


You can avoid this issue buy filling in the holes for the door lock and drilling new holes in the door, we sell a kit to do this.


If you just want to drill a hole for the door latch we sell that template alone. I have enclosed links for both below.


You might consider replacing the door jambs. Once the door is off, replacing the jamb is relatively easy. Just remove the inner and outer door casings, once they are off the old jamb can be easily removed and the new jamb nailed into place.


This will give you a much more attractive result and save you the trouble of filing in the old hinge and door latch holes.


You will have to paint the jamb in either case so a new jamb will make for a more professional look.


You can buy a new jamb kit at your local Home Depot.




Posted 2013-03-11T23:53:00+0000  by Mike_HD_OC


I spotted the question, asked about a week ago, on "flipping" a new door, and hanging it opposite of the old door. My situation is similar, though the old door is a standard door, which has been installed literally, upside down, in the frame. Thus, there is an 80" door, with a doorknob installed at 35" from the top, rather than 45" but the hinges were installed at standard measurements, 9.75" top, and 9.5" bottom, though they are attached on the opposite side of the frame, (right), as though the frame and door is a Left hand swing. Currently, it is a right hand swing, with a left hand installation, and a right hand swing door, flipped upside down, to accommodate a left hand swing installation, in a piece meal fashion.


I want to buy and install a right hand swing, 80" high by 30" wide door, and to fit into the existing doorway's jam, and since the current door, is hinged and and the door handle latches on the opposite of a right hand door, and with a non standard (measured) door latch, affixed into the existing frame.

My question is: To correct, and replace the door, properly, will I have to install a new jam, or frame, and buy a prehung door? Also, I think the frame or opening allows for a split  jam door - or is that standard with all or most interior, hinged, swing doors, for bedroom and bathroom entry ways?

I am very green on all door terminology and so I apologize if my explanation and detail in description of my issue is a bit long winded, or difficult to follow.


Posted 2013-03-19T08:36:45+0000  by irshgrl500
I did not know how to edit my original post I made an error. The door is a Left hand swing, installed upside down, so it is installed as a right hand swing. I'd like to have all 4 interior doors, I am replacing to be left hand swings (because the 3 of current doors, I am replacing are left hand swings.) In order to correct the swing of the replacement door for this door, installed upside down, will I have to replace the frame?
Posted 2013-03-19T22:54:22+0000  by irshgrl500

 Hi Irshgrl500,


You could flip the door, but then you will have to mortise in the hinges for the door on one side and fill in the hinge cutouts on the other.


A lot of time and effort, in addition you will have to bore a hole in the opposite jamb for the latch, and fill in the latch hole on the other side, more work.


Replacing the jamb will also require mortising hinges and drilling a hole for the latch.


Since you do not have a lot of woodworking experience, I would recommend purchasing a prehung door and installing it.


To install the prehung door remove the old door, then remove the door casing (trim around the door).


This will expose the jamb, which is usually nailed into place; using a pry bar remove the jamb, top and sides.


Now you are ready to install your prehung door. Place the door in the opening, making sure it is square.


Place wooden shims between the door jamb and the opening to align it. Use a carpenters square to check it for trueness. You can buy the shims when you pick up your door.


Once the door is square and true with the opening, nail the jamb into place through the shims.


When this is done you can reapply the casing (trim), and paint it.





Posted 2013-03-21T19:14:36+0000  by Mike_HD_OC

Thank you, Mike. I thought installing a prehung door, was the best answer. And you're right, my woodworking experience is not "a lot", it is basically, nil.




Posted 2013-03-21T22:20:11+0000  by irshgrl500
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