French door installation instructions

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French doors refer to two framed doors filled with glass. The doors open in the middle and can have a single large glass panel or be divided into any number of smaller panels. These doors open up the areas that they join by making a double-sized door opening but dividing the needed clearance space between the doors. You can easily install a set of prehung French doors in your home. “Prehung” means they come with a wooden frame holding the doors together, and they simply fit into your doorway for installation.


Step One

Prepare the doorway so it is the correct size to accommodate the French doors. If the doors are bigger than your current doorway, use a reciprocating saw to clear the wall to the right size.


Step Two

Cover the inside of the door with house wrap. Use a staple gun to secure the wrap so it is attached to the inside and outside of the door frame, just over the edge.


Step Three

Run a wide strip of caulk from a caulk gun along the bottom of the doorway. The caulk should be centred between the inside and outside of the doorway.


Step Four

Insert the doors into the doorway so they rest on top of the caulk. Center the doors inside the doorway.


Step Five

Anchor the doors in place by inserting a 3-½-inch screw into one top and one bottom corner on one side of the door with a power drill. The screws should be placed 6 inches down from the top of the frame and 6 inches up from the bottom of the frame.


Step Six

Use a level to check that the doors are straight horizontally and vertically. Wedge wooden shims into any gaps that cause a discrepancy in the alignment.


Step Seven

Stuff the gaps around the doors with foam insulation until the frame is packed tightly. Secure the doors in place by drilling 3-½-inch screws all around the door frame.


Step Eight

Attach the trim around the interior door frame. The trim is attached to the wall and the door frame with a nail gun until it is firmly in place.


Step Nine

Seal the exterior side of the door with caulk. The caulk should fill the gap between the wall and the doors.


Step Ten

Apply a finish or siding around the doors that matches the rest of your house.


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