Rough opening for exterior door

SBerg59January 10, 2014

Looking for some advice about installing an exterior door. I have a porch that I've been modifying to enclose for year round use (I live in Iowa). A couple of years ago I replaced the decking with tongue and groove flooring, insulated the space below and covered it with plywood sheathing. I insulated the spaces above/below the windows; the interior is paneled with rough sawn cedar. Lastly, I was able to convert an old dryer vent for a little extra cooling and heating. The windows are also drafty and single paned, but I'll be addressing that this spring. I installed a new full lite storm door as well, but it's not doing a very good job. The door and window are covered with plastic sheeting to help with the drafts, but as you can guess this isn't a real solution.

My question is can I hang an exterior door on the existing framing (measures exactly 34-1/4" x 80-7/8") without disturbing the storm door? And can I install an exterior threshold along with the door? I've looked at prehung doors and I suspect that I'd need to remove the storm door and existing 1"x6" jamb frame and start from the studs and more importantly that I might need an expensive custom sized prehung door. This seems like more work and expense than necessary to get a door in place that will do the job. Also, I'd like a full light wood door because if necessary it would be easier to trim to size.

Thanks in advance for your thoughts,
SBerg

This post was edited by SBerg59 on Fri, Jan 10, 14 at 11:19

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snoonyb

Is the storm door swing in or swing out?

Is the jamb a rabbited jamb with fixed stops or 1x lumber with movable stops?

Have you tried rigid weatherstrip for the storm door?

    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 11:21AM
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HandyMac

Basic rough opening for an exterior door is 2" wider and taller than the door size.

Example, for a 34" wide door that is 80" tall, the RO would be 36" wide and 82" tall---with two by four jack studs exposed(unless the framing is two by six).

So, taking off the 1x6 trim around that door opening would allow you the necessary width/height to install a stock 34" door.

The storm has to come off, since it will mount to the outside trim on the new door.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 12:54PM
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SBerg59

Snoonyb, The storm is swing out and there are no stops or rabbited threshold as there was never an entry door in this opening, only the storm door.

Handymac, So I can install a stock "prehung" door by removing everything and starting from scratch... Good to know I've got the right amount of space for standard prehung...

However, can't I hang a 34" RH inswing exterior door, add stops, weather stripping/sweep and a threshold and get nearly the same end result? Seems like I should be able to do this as the 1x6 framing forms the same 3 sides that would be on a prehung. Then I would install a threshold. I realize that it wouldn't be properly rabbited to the 1x6's but think it would do the job for this porch and not be nearly as expensive.

Thanks,
SBerg

    Bookmark   January 11, 2014 at 10:24AM
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snoonyb

"So I can install a stock "prehung" door "

The operative word here is stock.

A 2'10" door is not stock.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2014 at 10:49AM
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HandyMac

http://www.homedepot.com/p/JELD-WEN-Premium-6-Panel-Primed-White-Steel-Entry-Door-with-Brickmold-THDJW166100254/202036398#

34" wide stock door

    Bookmark   January 11, 2014 at 11:50AM
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snoonyb

I stand corrected.

"JELD-WEN"

So, they finally decided to address a niche market.

But then, I've never purchased their products,

    Bookmark   January 11, 2014 at 12:25PM
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SBerg59

Still wonding if can simply hang a 34" RH inswing exterior door instead of a prehung model, add stops, weather stripping/sweep and a threshold and get nearly the same end result? Seems like I should be able to do this as the 1x6 framing forms the same 3 sides that would be on a prehung. Then I would install a threshold. I realize that it wouldn't be properly rabbited to the 1x6's but think it would do the job for this porch and not be nearly as expensive.
Thanks for your input.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2014 at 9:41AM
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HandyMac

Yes, what you ask can be done. It will be a lot more work and will necessitate some experience to get it right.

Sans experience, it can be cobbled together and either work well or not.

If I sound coarse, the point is if you had sufficient experience to do a slab install, you would not need to ask if it can be done. That is not to say you would not be able to get it done right, just in my experience a job like that as a DIY first is why I did so many repairs and reinstalls.

The current 1x6 pieces will need to be plumb and square to begin.If they are not, you cannot install a slab correctly.

If the 1x6 pieces are not plumb and square, making them so will be more work than removing and installing a prehung.

If the cost of a prehung is prohibitive, then you will learn how to hang a slab. Get a book on door installation. That will help.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2014 at 10:05AM
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SBerg59

No offense taken... I see what you're saying... It's more complicated than I thought.

I was planning on having a pro install the door and thought he'd not need a lot of time to do it, but if the existing jambs are, like you mention, not plumb then it'll take him more time to install and cost more in the long run. Best bet is to remove the storm and existing frame and install a prehung. I'll pay more for the prehung door, but less for the installation and it'll be done right. I may even be able to hang it myself and have it turn out OK... but probably won't risk it.

Thanks for your thoughts.
SBerg

This post was edited by SBerg59 on Wed, Jan 15, 14 at 12:02

    Bookmark   January 15, 2014 at 11:51AM
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BernadetteBowers

Surely, you can. I had the same problem with my entry door as I wanted to replace it with a new one, but everything was Ok with framing and I didn't want to waste money on it. But I had to order a custom entry door and specialist from http://www.casalomawooddoors.com/ made proper measurements and made the door that fits perfect the existing frame.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2014 at 10:35AM
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