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  • selecting the correct door left or right?

    I have a door question....

    The present door is not correct as the hinges are on the exterior.

    I want to replace the door with a proper exterior door with the hinges on the inside.

    When I'm inside facing the door, the door knob and lock face the left or my left hand. The hinges, although on the outside face the right side or my right hand. When I open the door from the inside it swings out towards the right. This is the same direction I want to new door to function.

    I Thought there was a clever rhyme to determine a right door or a left door, I just don't remember it.

    I suspect the original homeowner moved this door from another location and did not concern themselves as to a right or left door. He just installed it hinges be damned!

    I need to know the proper terminology so when I speak to the orange apron
    [in English] he will be able to point out the correct exterior door assembly.

    I will likely demolish to the rough opening and buy a pre-hung door as this is my first official door project.

    Thanks for the help

    Cactus Man

  • #2
    Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

    when you face a door form the outside you call it right or left by the side that the hinges are mounted from this point of view. You want a right handed out-swing door. this goes for windows, cabinets and everything else afaik. Sorry, I'll have to work on a rhyme .
    A good carpenter makes few mistakes, a great carpenter can fix his own.

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    • #3
      Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

      I'm so confused ... you want the hinges on the inside but the door to swing outside on an exterior door? Is that possible?

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

        I'm no expert but I don't recall ever seeing an exterior door that opens out. You may have trouble finding a pre-hung door that does that. If you reversed the pre-hung door so that it'll open out you'll still end up with the hinges on the outside. Again, I'm no expert on hanging doors but it sounds to me like you'll have to rebuild the whole opening to meet your specs.
        ================================================== ====
        All of us could take a lesson from the weather. It pays no attention to criticism.

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        • #5
          Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

          For obvious security reasons you don't want the hinge pins on the outside. I think I saw a special recessed hinge somewhere... where was it?...hmmm...Oh hell I can't remember. Not sure the Orange Apron is gunna help you with this.

          What am I doing in the Ask The Woodworking Experts??
          Last edited by plumberscrack; 04-22-2007, 06:59 PM.

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          • #6
            Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

            Open the door, put your back up against the hinges grab the door knob, if you grab the knob with your "right hand" and the door swings in or out, then thats what it is, right hand swing in or out. If your door is in the wrong direction of what you want, then figure it out, this is the rule of thumb. You do not want to have an entry door swinging out, due to many reasons. If there are steps you can knock someone off when you open up the door, thats just one example.
            Last edited by garager; 04-22-2007, 07:31 PM.
            Great Link for a Construction Owner/Tradesmen, and just say Garager sent you....

            http://www.contractorspub.com

            A good climbing rope will last you 3 to 5 years, a bad climbing rope will last you a life time !!!

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            • #7
              Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

              There are doors that swing out, usually with glass to avoid hitting people, but wind taking them is another concern. They will get away from you and get blown against people or the building fairly easily. They make them with locked hinges so they cannot be undone from outside. I know that in some cases it is useful if there are very strong wind and rain concerns as it can be pulled tight against a higher than normal sill at the bottom, but this is more common in patio doors.

              BTW, I was a door and window installer for about three years. If you have any specific questions regarding steps let me know.
              A good carpenter makes few mistakes, a great carpenter can fix his own.

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              • #8
                Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

                My favorite way to determine which door to buy is to stand it up in front of me and act as if I wanted to enter the through it. This has stopped me from buying the wrong door more than once.

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                • #9
                  Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

                  Hmm, My front door swings in, my 2 back doors swing out. Even with the pins on the outside, it's almost impossible to get the door open as the hinge barrels overlap each other. Granted, with a crow bar, you can pry them open, but if you need to go that far, it won't matter anyway!

                  Mark

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                  • #10
                    Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

                    I have a side door that opens outward. Pain in the butt! This is on the house we bought last year and we're still working on the darn thing. But back to the door... Problem with mine is that you walk in from the driveway, and onto a landing. Turn to the right and it takes you down a half-dozen steps to another landing in the basement; and if you turn to the left it takes you up three steps into the kitchen. Certainly no room for it to swing inward without it blocking either the steps down or up. Unfortunatelly, because it comes in from the driveway, it's the major access to the house.

                    I believe the hinge pins are locked, but I'll have to confirm that when I'm down there tomorrow morning. I won't be able to post until I return on Thursday night.

                    But, having the door swing out is a major problem if a wind is present. I've got a chain on it now (at the top of the door). Especially during the winter months, the driveway is like a windtunnel and the door will whip our of your hands if you are the least bit inattentive. The awning over the door has been damaged more than a few times by the looks of it, as the door hits the side braces on the awning, if it swings too far. Right after we purchased the place, I noticed that the lowest hinge was missing some screws (there's three hinges on the door) and that the wood casing behind it was damaged. It wasn't until the weather went sour before I realized why. So, I installed longer screws and screw anchors in the casing and added the chain to limit the swing on the door. It's still a pain though!

                    CWS

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                    • #11
                      Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

                      I have a side door on my shop/garage that opend outward to the outside. I'm in complete agreement with CWS. The wind easily takes that sucker right out of my hand. and if I get any dirt build up in the area around where the door swings on the ground then the door easily will get jammed up and need some cleaning to get moving again. I rarely use the door as it is too much trouble.
                      Still enjoying all 10 fingers!

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                      • #12
                        Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

                        I appreciate the information..this door opens into a garage and wind taking the door is not an issue.
                        I do not have room in the hall/area for the door to open inward. There is a spiral staircase and the only option is to open out..As it has done for many years.

                        What are locking hinges? Perhaps just changing the hinge set will reduce my anxiety of someone yanking the hinge pins and strolling into the house.

                        thanks

                        Cactus Man

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                        • #13
                          Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

                          Here is an image I found that is helpful
                          Attached Files

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                          • #14
                            Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

                            here in south florida it is "code" to have the hinges on the out side (yes i think it is very dumb) but it is done like this so when a hurricane comes though the door can not be sucked in to the house and for rescue to make things faster. so please fine out if it is "code" in your area
                            9/11/01, never forget.

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                            • #15
                              Re: selecting the correct door left or right?

                              If you are worried about someone pulling the pins and prying the door out, try this. Open the door all the way out and drill 3, evenly spaced 1/2" holes in the hing side casing, about an inch deep. Cut 3 pieces of 1/2" dowel about 1 3/4" long. Put glue in the holes in the casing and insert the dowels. (holes can be at top, center and bottom.) then slowly close the door and mark where the dowels contact the hinge side of the door and drill 3, 3/4" holes about an inch deep. Presto, even if the hinge pins are pulled, the dowels will still "lock" the hinge side of the door in place. If you want to get extra killer, use some re-bar or round steel bar instead of the dowels.

                              Mark

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