What Is a Prehung Door?

If you are planning to replace your old doors or install new ones in your home, you may have come across the term “prehung door”. But what exactly is a prehung door and how does it differ from other types of doors?

In this essay, I will explain the features, advantages, disadvantages, and installation process of prehung doors. I will also compare them with slab doors, which are the alternative option for replacing or installing doors.

What is a prehung door?

A prehung door is a door that comes attached to an existing door frame by hinges. It is a complete package that can be installed in a prepared doorway without having to assemble a new frame. A prehung door usually includes the following parts:

  • The door slab: This is the actual door that swings open and shut. It can be made of wood, metal, fiberglass, or composite materials. The door slab can have different styles, such as panel, flush, or glass.
  • The door frame: This is the structure that surrounds the door slab and holds it in place. It can be made of wood or metal. The door frame consists of three parts: the head (the top part), the jamb (the vertical sides), and the sill (the bottom part).
  • The hinges: These are the metal devices that connect the door slab to the jamb and allow it to swing. They are usually located on one side of the door, either left or right, depending on the direction of opening. The hinges can have different finishes, such as brass, chrome, or bronze.
  • The casing: This is the decorative molding that covers the gap between the door frame and the wall. It can be made of wood or plastic. The casing can have different profiles, such as flat, fluted, or rosette.
  • The hardware: This includes the knob or handle, the lockset, and the strike plate. The hardware allows you to open, close, and secure the door. The hardware can have different styles and finishes, such as modern, traditional, or rustic.

What Are The Advantages Of A Prehung Door

What Are The Advantages Of A Prehung Door

Prehung doors are a great option for both new construction and renovation projects. They come with a number of advantages over slab doors, including

1. Ease of installation

Installing a prehung door is simpler and faster than installing a slab door because most of the work is already done by the manufacturer. The installer only needs to fit the entire assembly into the prepared opening and secure it with fasteners and shims.

There is no need to build a new frame, cut mortises, drill holes, or align hinges. Prehung doors are especially convenient for exterior doors, which require more precision and weatherproofing than interior doors.

2. Quality and Consistency

Prehung doors are manufactured in controlled environments with standardized measurements and specifications. They are less likely to have defects, errors, or variations than slab doors, which may be affected by human error, environmental factors, or transportation damage.

Prehung doors are also more likely to have consistent gaps, clearances, and swings than slab doors, which may need adjustments or corrections during installation.

3. Variety and Customization

Prehung doors are available in a wide range of materials, styles, designs, and finishes to suit different tastes and needs.

They can also be customized with different features, such as glass panels, sidelights, transoms, or decorative hardware. Prehung doors can also be ordered with specific dimensions and configurations to fit non-standard openings or preferences.

4. Choice of styles

Prehung doors come in a wide variety of styles, so you can find one that matches the décor of your home. You can choose from different wood species, finishes, and hardware options.

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Disadvantages of Prehung Doors

Prehung doors offer many advantages, but they also have a few disadvantages. Here are some of the most common:

1. Higher cost

Prehung doors are more expensive than slab doors because they include more parts and labor. The cost of a prehung door can vary depending on the material, size, style, and features of the door and the frame.

The average cost of a prehung interior door is between $100 and $300, while the average cost of a prehung exterior door is between $300 and $800. Slab doors can cost as low as $30 for a basic interior door or $100 for a basic exterior door.

2. Heavier weight

Prehung doors are heavier than slab doors because they include the frame and the hinges. This makes them more difficult to transport and handle during installation. Prehung exterior doors are especially heavy because they are usually made of solid materials and have thicker frames.

The weight of a prehung door can range from 50 to 200 pounds or more, while the weight of a slab door can range from 20 to 100 pounds or less.

3. Limited flexibility

Prehung doors are less flexible than slab doors because they are pre-assembled and pre-drilled by the manufacturer. This means that they cannot be easily modified or adjusted to fit different openings or hardware.

For example, if the opening is slightly smaller or larger than the prehung door, the installer may need to trim the frame or the wall to make it fit.

If the hardware does not match the pre-drilled hole or the strike plate, the installer may need to drill new holes or replace the hardware.

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How To Choose The Right Prehung Door For Your Project?

Choosing the right prehung door for your project can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are a few things to keep in mind when making your decision.

1. Size

The first thing you need to do is measure your door opening. This will tell you the size of the prehung door you need. Prehung doors come in a variety of sizes, so you’ll need to find one that fits your opening perfectly.

2. Style

Once you know the size of the door you need, you can start to consider the style. Prehung doors come in a variety of styles, from traditional to modern. You’ll need to choose a style that matches the décor of your home.

3. Material

Prehung doors are made from a variety of materials, including wood, fiberglass, and metal. Each material has its own advantages and disadvantages. Wood doors are traditional and beautiful, but they require more maintenance.

Fiberglass doors are durable and low-maintenance, but they may not be as attractive as wood doors. Metal doors are very durable, but they can be cold and noisy.

4. Hardware

Prehung doors come with a variety of hardware options, including doorknobs, hinges, and closers. You’ll need to choose hardware that matches the style of your door and your home.

5. Rough opening

The rough opening is the opening in the wall where the door will be installed. The rough opening needs to be the correct size for the prehung door you choose.

If the rough opening is too small, the door won’t fit. If the rough opening is too large, you’ll need to fill in the extra space with shims.

6. Fire rating

If you’re installing a door in a fire-rated wall, you’ll need to choose a prehung door that has the same fire rating. Fire-rated doors are made with special materials that help to slow the spread of fire.

Comparison with Slab Doors

Slab Doors

Slab doors and prehung doors are both common types of doors used in homes. They have different features and benefits, so it’s important to understand the differences before you decide which type is right for you.

Slab Doors

Slab doors are simply the door itself, without the frame or hardware. They are typically made from wood, but they can also be made from other materials, such as fiberglass or metal.

This doors are more affordable than prehung doors, and they offer more flexibility in terms of customization. However, they are also more difficult to install, and they may not fit perfectly into your door opening.

Prehung Doors

Prehung doors come with the door, frame, and hardware all assembled together. This makes them easier to install than slab doors, and they are more likely to fit perfectly into your door opening.

However, prehung doors are more expensive than slab doors, and they offer less flexibility in terms of customization.

Here is a table that summarizes the key differences between slab doors and prehung doors:

FeatureSlab DoorPrehung Door
CostLess expensiveMore expensive
FlexibilityMore flexibleLess flexible
Ease of installationMore difficult to installEasier to install
FitMay not fit perfectly into door openingMore likely to fit perfectly into door opening
CustomizationMore customizableLess customizable


A prehung door is a door that comes attached to an existing door frame by hinges. It is a complete package that can be installed in a prepared doorway without having to assemble a new frame. A prehung door has several advantages over other types of doors, such as saving time and effort, ensuring a proper fit, and offering more variety.

However, a prehung door also has some disadvantages, such as costing more, requiring more space, and possibly not matching your existing doors.

I hope this blog post was helpful for you. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. Thank you for reading!

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