USING CONVENTIONAL CONTRACTOR METHODS FOR INTERIOR DOORS
This article is a review and a comparison of costs or prices for door installation
or door replacement, covering contractors, installers and outsourced contractors
installing or replacing interior doors for home improvement centers, using traditional
or conventional methods.
The cost of replacing an interior door or upgrading or updating an interior door can vary
significantly, depending upon such factors such as the: Type of replacement door, the installer,
and the replacement method and materials used.
Typically, a General Contractor (GC) will charge $250 to $350 to replace or upgrade
a single, existing flat-panel, luan wood door with an updated molded panel,
hollow core, pre-hung or pre-assembled door.
The most popular replacement door style used today is the Six-Panel, molded,
(raised panel), hollow core door.
The most significant factor in determining the cost of interior door replacement is the preference
among contractors for, and common practice of, using a pre-hung door unit or preassembled door
(a door with the hinges already installed and attached to a frame called a jamb). These pre-hung
units come ready to be installed into a rough framed opening, rather than installing only the
Pre-Hung Door units are commonly used, because installing with a Slab or Blank Door
(the door by itself, without an attached frame) into an existing door jamb/frame can
be a difficult task for most installers.
INSTALLING A SLAB DOOR BY CONVENTIONAL CONTRACTOR METHODS
Using a Slab or a Blank Door (a door by itself, without a frame) requires a high skill set or a
precise method of duplicating the fit of the existing door.
The conventional method is to measure and cut, which involves not only cutting the recesses,
or hinge mortises, into which the hinges are installed, but also fitting the door into an existing
jamb, which will have certainly settled unevenly over time. This would require precise cuts on
one, if not all, but the hinged side of the door.
This traditional method can be a very time-consuming and an unforgiving operation,
with uncertain results.
CONTRACTORS AVOID SLAB DOORS BY USING MORE COSTLY PREHUNG DOORS
To avoid the difficulties and uncertainties of installing a blank or a slab door, most installers
choose to install a pre-hung unit or a pre-assembled door (a door with the door frame attached),
Prehungs have the advantages of requiring less skill and a more foolproof outcome concerning
time and the satisfactory fit of the door, but also comes with some drawbacks.
The problem with using a pre-hung or a pre-assembled door, is that the contractor
has to rip out your existing door jambs and moldings to replace your door with
Removing and replacing usually perfectly good door jambs and moldings, results in
the contractor adding the costs of these materials to the job.
The cost of new moldings (which are likely to be damaged when removing the
existing door jamb) also adds to the labor costs.
Also, many contractors factor in the cost of repairing or replacing damage to the
adjacent paint or wall paper (which are likely to be damaged during the removal
of the existing door jamb) to the job cost.
PRE-HUNG DOOR COST: $250 - $350 - PER PREHUNG DOOR
Labor Only: $160 - $250
Remove and replace an existing door, associated hardware (door knobs or levers and
hinges) and door molding.
Materials: $70 - $100 (PRE-HUNG HOLLOW-CORE DOOR)
Materials cost depends on the style of the door, the brand, and the supplier (home centers
can be cheaper but may lack the expertise and personal service offered by local or regional
building supply outlets, which does affect the final price).
Replacement Door Molding: $20 to $50 (Depends upon style, size and the supplier)
Related Items (i.e., Fasteners, Shims and Caulking): $10 (est)
SLAB OR BLANK DOOR COST: $200 - $250 - PER SLAB DOOR
Replacing the Door & Hinges with a Slab Door:
Assuming you can still find a skilled contractor or carpenter capable of replacing
a slab door (this is becoming a lost art), the typical labor cost is generally
$160 to $180, plus the cost of materials (the door, hinges, lockset, etc).
There is less time and labor involved by replacing with a slab door, rather than using a prehung
door. However, most finish carpenters who can successfully perform a slab door replacement
consider themselves skilled and their time worth more than that of an installer who will only
level, shim, and nail a pre-hung unit, and will charge accordingly.
Labor: $160 - $180 Per Slab Door
Materials: $35 - $50 Per Hollow Core Door (Depending on Style & Supplier)
Hinges: $5 – 10 Per Hinge (For Standard-Plated, Steel Hinges)
(Please note that most Brass Hinges are actually Brass-Plated Steel)
Repairs & Special Issues:
Please ask if the contracted installer has specialists to deal with repairs and
special issues, such as door jamb repairs, rebuilding a door jamb, etc.
Interior Door Upgrade has on staff, a custom woodworker/expert finish carpenter
who is skilled with dealing with such situations.
Furthermore, for any changes to your original order, you may have to get a
Change Order approved by the supervisor, before the installer can make any
revisions or additions.
Some contractors do not offer any installation guarantee, or if they do,
it's usually only a one-year guarantee.
Interior Door Upgrade, LLC offers a 2-Year Workmanship or Installation Guarantee.
Lowest Price Guarantee
Please ask if the contractor has a lowest price guarantee.
Interior Door Upgrade, LLC does have a Lowest Price Guarantee. Please see:
ABOUT US & WHY US & GUARANTEES .
Minimum Order for Special Prices
Please ask the contractor if they have a requirement of a minimum quantity
of doors or even one in order to undertake the job or for their price quote.
Interior Door Upgrade, LLC has a minimum of only (5) five doors, in order to
qualify for our low prices (4 Doors or Less: $120 Service Charge.)
For Interior Door Upgrade's Special on the: Six-Panel, Hollow-Core, Slab Door,
the price is $119.99. (Other styles start at $119.99.)
(4-Doors or Less: $120 Service Charge.)
OTHER FACTORS WHEN REPLACING INTERIOR DOORS
An additional consideration in determining the costs of interior door replacement
are the number of doors being replaced and any repairs or replacements that need
to be made to the door jambs or door frames.
It is not cost effective for a contractor to spend his entire day purchasing one or two doors,
driving to the job location, setting up or preparing for the installation and breaking down
equipment, all for the installation charge of one or two doors.
Most contractors will charge what is called a minimum service charge, or require
a certain number of doors to be replaced, which will increase the installation costs
per door, accordingly.
It’s more cost effective for the contractor to schedule other jobs at the home that
same day (i.e, crown moldings or other remodeling work), if he is replacing a small
number of doors.
Please bear this in mind when scheduling a contractor for a door replacement job with only
a small quantity of doors.
Disclaimer: The content of this website is intended to be used for informational and
entertainment purposes only. The prices of other installers are general estimates.
Please first check the accuracy of any information and prices with your prospective
or chosen installer, home improvement store, contractor supplier, manufacturer
or other source. We are not responsible for any errors and or omissions.