Installing a Wood Screen Door

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    Wood screen doors can be very inexpensive like the model we will be in stalling or can cost well over $100. Unlike aluminum or vinyl screen doors they are mostly suited for an auxiliary door like a garage or porch door.

    First check the opening of the door jam that you will be attaching it to and make sure that the one you purchase is within reasonable size.

    You will most likely have to fit your door to match your jam so you want to purchase one that is a little larger in height and width.

    All doors blanks not hung in their own casement whether they are solid wood or hollow core are made to be trimmed along the bottom and hinge sides for fitting.

    The amount of trimming depends on both the way the door was made and the decorative aspects of the door.

    If we were fitting a raised panel door then we would have to adjust our cut to fit and maybe take some material off the top and bottom of the door.

    If your door blank is pre-drilled and set for your lock set you will have to take more care to properly align the door to the jam.

    On this simple screen door we will use many of the same techniques needed to install any door blank in an existing frame.

    First place the door against the jam and decide if you want to remove material from the bottom or top of the door.


    Since we will be removing material from the bottom we flip the door over and mark where the top of the jam opening meets the door.

    Now that we have the height of the door we measure the width of the door jam opening and transfer that measurement to the door.

    We can now use a jigsaw to make our rough cuts.

    The door has been rough sized so we insert it into the door jam and use a compass to mark a revel so that we can add a little extra space between the door and the jam to allow easy opening and closing.

    Use a block plane to remove the material from the edge and sandpaper to make a finished surface.

    Now that the size of the door is correct use cardboard shims to position the door in the jam with an equal amount of space on all edges.

    Mark for the hinges by placing the hinge on the door and using a pencil. Then use a small drill bit to drill holes for the screws and attach the door hinges to the door and the door jam frame.

    You can now add any handles or catches to keep the door closed.

    In this example we used spring hinges to self close the door but you may find that a hydraulic door closer or spring will meet your needs.

    In our project we used a coat of polyurethane to protect the wood but paint would be just as good.

    Good luck with your project and remember to follow proper safety when using any tools.

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