As with most things in life there are different levels of standard on offer with pre-hung doors. Price is always something to look at, you get what you pay for, so while pre-hung door systems will save you money the majority of the saving is in your labour costs as they are so quick to install. The door itself wont necessarily be cheaper than buying the materials yourself. Here are ten things that you can ask a supplier to quickly determine the quality of their pre-hung doors and the standard that they work towards in their manufacturing process.
Are they actually Pre-hung?
OK so this one sounds a bit straightforward but you will find that some pre-hung door suppliers are actually supplying flat pack door and jamb sets. Flat packed sets still save you time but a true pre-hung door will be delivered to site hung in the jamb and prepped for all hardware.
Do they offer custom size jambs & doors?
While the majority of doors and jamb widths stay the same there are designs where they differ. This happens both with renovations and in new builds. A good pre-hung door supplier will be able to provide custom width jambs and custom size doors. This is particularly important if you work on architectural builds, as you will know tall, narrow and wide doors are all becoming increasingly popular.
Are the hinges square or radius cornered?
When pre-hung doors are made entirely through automated machines the hinges used are radius-cornered hinges. The machine will rout out the space for the hinge and is not capable of doing nice sharp, even corners for square cornered hinges. When a pre-hung door company uses squared hinges you can be sure that they are doing this process by hand, this shows a certain level of skill and attention to detail that cannot be achieved through a fully automated manufacture process. Square edged hinges are not only stronger structurally they are also more aesthetically pleasing and are what will be used in architectural builds.
Stainless Steel hinges?
Some pre-hung door companies will only use light duty, chrome plated steel. It’s important to ensure that your pre-hung door supplier uses heavy duty stainless steel hinges for both aesthetics and longevity.
Do they prime the top and bottom edges?
This is an added level of service making your onsite door installation even more streamlined. By having the top and bottom edges already primed you save yourself yet another fiddly, frustrating job. While this doesn’t necessarily add to the quality of the door it absolutely adds to the quality of the service being offered by the supplier and if they care enough about your time and needs to take care of this job for you, you can be sure that their quality control is top notch.
Solid or Hollow Core?
Its obvious right? Good quality doors for architectural houses are not going to be hollow core. Now while hollow core doors do need to be on offer, they do serve a purpose and they do have a market, you need to know that your pre-hung door supplier deals with solid core doors otherwise you know they are limited in their quality.
Seals in the jamb?
This one is new and you may not find many who offer this. You can now get door jambs with a saw cut groove for a seal. These seals result in a soft close door (no slamming doors is always a plus), they are great for minimising draughts through the house and they also help with noise cancelling from room to room. A really high quality pre-hung door supplier will be all over this option as it will soon enough be standard in high end homes. You should be able to get your doors pre-hung on a rebated jamb with a seal.
MDF or Pine Jambs?
While some fast, kit-home builders will happily use MDF jambs you will not find them in high end homes. A good quality pre-hung door supplier will use pine jambs only.
Do they offer handles and locks?
Hardware prep should be available from all suppliers but the best suppliers will be able to sell you the handles as well. This way when you get your door delivery you have everything you need to complete door installation in one hit.
Do they offer architraves?
Similar to the handles questions, a really great pre-hung door supplier will have a range of architraves on offer too. They may even cut these to length and mitre them for you to save you even more time and effort.