In the Details

This installation seems pretty simple, but creating a perfectly square hole and then a perfectly square frame can be very difficult. You may have to repeatedly measure and carefully adjust the shims to achieve the proper frame. You might be tempted to cheat and just hang the doors with a less-than right-angle frame, but you'll regret it later. Those beautiful new French doors will be a detractor if they don't open and close correctly because of a sloppy installation.

Installing Interior French Doors

Installing interior French doors isn't a cakewalk, but it doesn't have to be imposs­ible. Care and a little work can lead to some beautiful doors that let in a lot more light. There are several items you'll need on hand for the installation, including: a power drill, saws, screwdrivers, hammers and mallets, screws and nails, shims, a pry bar, a chisel, a tape measure, a carpenter's square and a level. Don't forget safety glasses, and last but not least, the French door kit with a frame and doorknobs.

­To install interior French doors:

  1. First, remove the old frame. Be careful when using the hammer and pry bar so that you don't damage the trim. It's a good idea to label the trim pieces so you can put them back up more quickly.
  2. Check your opening to be sure it's a perfect square. Use the levels and carpenter's square -- and don't skip this step! Paying attention to details like these is what makes this difficult installation easier.
  3. Install the new frame, using the shims to hold it firmly in place. Then, test the new doors to make sure they fit in the frame and open smoothly. If everything works nicely, use the screws to put the frame in its place permanently.
  4. Finally, hang the doors and mount any hardware accompanying the kit (doorknobs, latches, etc) [source: HGTV].

Want to bring the beauty of your patio into your house? Installing exterior French doors is a perfect way to do that. Read on to discover how.