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Old 12-28-2009, 09:52 AM   #16
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Pre-Hung doors - How to Hang


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I "printed" the document as a pdf. Send me an email, and I'll email the pdf to you if you're interested. PDF is Adobe's cross-platform document sharing format. I wrote it with Acrobat version 9. The document did not show the door illustration correctly in Word 2007, so I changed the layout to show the illustration and text more easily. Otherwise, no changes have been made to the original.
It's puzzling that you had a problem with Word 2007.

I wrote this with 2007, but I saved it as 97-2003, since many people still use that.

I just went up and opened it with 2007, and it worked fine. (You do realize the picture of the door is supposed to be right in the center of the page of text, right?) Makes it a bit of a challenge to read around, but it keeps it in context, and keeps you awake.

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Old 01-30-2010, 10:04 AM   #17
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Pre-Hung doors - How to Hang


Thanks Willie T Very in depth post with lots of good points. I have just retired and will be using that document as a guide line. My Dad was a carpenter and I helped him install doors but when you are not going into it as a trade you don't always pay close attention to details(thats what he was there for).
Thanks again.
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Old 11-05-2010, 08:57 PM   #18
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Pre-Hung doors - How to Hang


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Originally Posted by Willie T View Post
No offense taken. It was too long for one post, and I know I usually won't bother reading something stretched into two posts. Besides, it has an illustration in it. I guess sometimes we all miss out on something.

Humorous thing is. You are not opening a Word document from my site. You are opening a document from the same site you are already logged into. About the same thing as opening another thread here.
I REALLY hate to bump such an old thread but I have to so we can correct your thought process. Although you are uploading the file to the very forum that we log into everyday, that has absolutely no bearing on whether it is safe or not. diychatroom.com is just the server that is hosting whatever file you choose to upload. I could upload malicious content as an attachment and still infect everyone who downloads it.

Every single file is unrelated to the next in terms of web storage. Just because they are stored on the same server, as I said earlier, has absolutely no bearing on the safety of it. You could get infected from google.com if someone where to maliciously upload it to their server. It doesn't generally happen because we have security measures, and those are they very measures giving you a false sense of security when you download a file from what you think to be a safe source.

This is why virus protection was created. If your theory we're correct we could all just download safe files and have so-called trusted sources. But, alas, we do not.
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Old 11-05-2010, 11:11 PM   #19
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Pre-Hung doors - How to Hang


1070 downloads as of now and nobody is whining about any virus...

Besides, Google bots would have id'd it by now as a dangerous item.

On top of that, the Server can have its own heuristic scans of the attachment.

I'd download it and read it, but I think I did already. Good info to have if you need it.

Willy is not about to post up any virus laden files... guaranteed.
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Old 01-14-2011, 10:45 PM   #20
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Pre-Hung doors - How to Hang


Pre hung doors made easy. With door in frame measure width of door at the top, measure width of opening, fill the rough opening remainder evenly with a cedar shim on each side at the same height as the top of the door frame. Make it 1/16 or an 1/8 tighter. with a wooden block and hammer squeeze the door in place it will hold its own. Level the top if the floor is out. Shim the jam with a 1/8 margin all around the door. secure the jam, trim the shims, trim with casing, have a beer
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Old 01-27-2011, 08:46 PM   #21
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Thank you Willie for taking the time. Wish I would have found this before an entire day was wasted on only the 1st of 12 doors
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Old 01-28-2011, 09:22 AM   #22
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I liked the How To Willie! Great job! ....but MY old windblows did not show the pic, just the text, which I've taken the liberty to copy and post in the next three posts. (for those who are nervous about downloading the file.)
Perhaps you could post the picture?


Instructions for hanging a pre-hung door when the jambs will be painted.

Pre-hung interior doors are one of the most misunderstood installations. Consequently, one of the most feared. And it doesn’t have to be this way at all.

There are a series of simple, progressive steps that you can easily follow to hang a perfect door.
And a few tools and supplies.

First of all, the Rough Framed opening needs to be neatly done, plumb and square, and about ½” to ¾” larger in width and 1” higher than the frame of the door going into the opening.

STEP 1 - Check that Rough Opening!
Measure the opening to verify that you have the clearance stated above.
Try to borrow a 6’ level if you don’t have one. Also have your 2’ level on hand.
Check to see that the framing is plumb and level in every direction and side you can get the 6” level to rest on.
Here’s a hint that will make leveling easier: Using double-sided tape, affix two identical small blocks of wood to the flat edges of the level, one at each end. These blocks of wood will enable the long length of the level to span any bumps or irregularities in the surface to be leveled. This will keep the level from “rocking” on an imperfect wall or stud. And you only need to have each of those two blocks resting upon the surface to be leveled to get a good, plumb reading.

STEP 2 - Check the level across the door opening on the surface of the floor.
Using your 2’ level, lay it on the floor where the door will sit when closed.
If it is good, or very close, you’re fine.
Now place the 6’ level across the opening, but this time put it on the face of both walls to check that the walls line up straight with other. They probably do (this is almost never a problem) If they don’t, just keep that fact in mind, and we’ll deal with it later when the jamb goes in. Proceed to STEP 3 if all is level and aligned.
But...If the floor is substantially higher (1/2” or more) at the side of the opening where the door will be hinged, you are still OK, but the door bottom may have to be trimmed off across the opening to look right and seal well.
(Now, this “trimming” can potentially cause problems as the finished door is swung open. We will check for that in a moment.)
If the floor is substantially higher (1/2” or more) at the side where the door handle will latch, you will almost certainly have to do some bottom trimming.

But, before we do any trimming, we also need to check the level of the floor wherever the door will pass above the surface of the floor in its opening arc. You know how sometimes you find a door that “scrapes” in the middle of the swing somewhere? Or a door that “wedges” itself tight to the floor when fully open? Aggravating, isn’t it? Well, that was all caused by someone not checking the floor “swing” area for high spots. You’re going to check, aren’t you?

If you find any high spots, I think you already know that may mean shaving just a tad more off the bottom of the door. But it also may not. It will all depend upon just how bad that “bump” is.

If it is real bad, the door may not be able to be successfully hung until the floor problem is fixed.

If it is only a bit off, and we are putting in carpet anyway, then we can deal with this situation later. Just remember that it is a glaring sign of a poor installation to have the door “scrape” the carpet. And it will soon wear an ugly arc in the carpet surface.

Trimming the door will be discussed at the end of this article.

*********************************

STEP 3
Now we are back to looking at trimming the door to make it look nice and level across the opening when it is shut.

We will first address a door opening that is high on the hinge side.
Always determine the future height of your finished floor. This will depend upon what’s going down on the floor in that room into which the door will swing. Is it going to be vinyl, tile, wood, carpet? Is the carpet going to be extra thick or have a thick padding under it?
These things are important to know (and by “knowing”, I mean knowing fully just exactly how thick any of your floor coverings will be.) You door has to clear them... all the way through the swing arc. Yet, you do not want the door set so high that there is a gap beneath it when it is firmly closed.
Unfortunately, this “fine tuning” part is going to take some initiative and estimation on your part. Remember this: You can always cut a little more OFF. Once it’s gone, you can’t put it back on the door.

Let’s say you’ve decided the carpet you’re going to put in that room (the one into which the door will swing) is going to need about 1” of clearance for the door to swing completely clear of it, yet still look good when closed. Well, all you do is measure down that distance you decided upon (notice how I leave this decision up to you?), and mark a square line across the back of the hinge side of the jamb. Cut it off neatly with a saw. It should now be your chosen distance longer than the door.

How much higher was the hinge side of the door opening than the latch side? Say 3/8”? Let’s use that measurement only as an example. (Remember, this is just an example to work with here; your numbers may be somewhat different.)

Hook your tape over the top of the hinge side jamb piece. That’s the outside top of the whole frame. Pull down to where you cut it off. It should read somewhere around 81 ¾” to 83”.

Now measure the other jamb from the outside top, and mark it 3/8” (our “example” measurement) longer than the hinge side. Now cut this one off too.... but cut it on the “wrong” side of the line so that you will end up a saw blade shorter than you intended for it to be. The reason for this will be explained later. You just want to be sure the latch side of the jamb is about 1/8” shorter than necessary for possible adjustments at installation.

Congratulations. You now have this door frame ready to install.

Trimming the door will be discussed at the end of this article.
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Old 01-28-2011, 09:24 AM   #23
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*********************************

We will now address a door opening that is high on the latch side.
Always determine the future height of your finished floor. This will depend upon what’s going down on the floor in that room into which the door will swing. Is it going to be vinyl, tile, wood, carpet? Is the carpet going to be extra thick or have a thick padding under it?
These things are important to know (and by “knowing”, I mean knowing fully just exactly how thick any of your floor coverings will be.) You door has to clear them... all the way through the swing arc. Yet, you do not want the door set so high that there is a gap beneath it when it is firmly closed.
Unfortunately, this “fine tuning” part is going to take some initiative and estimation on your part. Remember this: You can always cut a little more OFF. Once it’s gone, you can’t put it back on the door.

Let’s say you’ve decided the carpet you’re going to put in that room (the one into which the door will swing) is going to need about 1” of clearance for the door to swing completely clear of it, yet still look good when closed. Well, all you do is measure down that distance you decided upon (notice how I leave this decision up to you?), and mark a square line across the back of the hinge side of the jamb. Cut it off neatly with a saw. It should now be your chosen distance longer than the door. (To this point, this was the same as for the door above.)

Now it changes.

How much higher was the latch side of the door opening than the hinge side? Say 3/8”? Let’s use that measurement only as an example. (Remember, this is just an example to work with here; your numbers may be somewhat different.)

Hook your tape over the top of the hinge side jamb piece. That’s the outside top of the whole frame. Pull down to where you cut it off. It should read somewhere around 81 ¾” to 82”.

Now measure the other jamb from the outside top, and mark it 3/8” (our “example” measurement) shorter than the hinge side. Now cut this one off too. .... but cut it on the “wrong” side of the line so that you will end up a saw blade shorter than you intended for it to be. The reason for this will be explained later. You just want to be sure the latch side of the jamb is about 1/8” shorter than necessary for possible adjustments at installation.

Congratulations. You now have this door frame ready to install.

Trimming the door will be discussed at the end of this article.

*********************************

Finally, we address a door opening that is pretty much level all the way across.
Always determine the future height of your finished floor. This will depend upon what’s going down on the floor in that room into which the door will swing. Is it going to be vinyl, tile, wood, carpet? Is the carpet going to be extra thick or have a thick padding under it?
These things are important to know (and by “knowing”, I mean knowing fully just exactly how thick any of your floor coverings will be.) You door has to clear them... all the way through the swing arc. Yet, you do not want the door set so high that there is a gap beneath it when it is firmly closed.
Unfortunately, this “fine tuning” part is going to take some initiative and estimation on your part. Remember this: You can always cut a little more OFF. Once it’s gone, you can’t put it back on the door.

Let’s say you’ve decided the carpet you’re going to put in that room (the one into which the door will swing) is going to need about 1” of clearance for the door to swing completely clear of it, yet still look good when closed. Well, all you do is measure down that distance you decided upon (notice how I leave this decision up to you?), and mark a square line across the back of the hinge side of the jamb. Cut it off neatly with a saw. It should now be your chosen distance longer than the door.

Hook your tape over the top of the hinge side jamb piece. That’s the outside top of the whole frame. Pull down to where you cut it off. It should read somewhere around 81 ¾” to 82”. (To this point, this was the same as for both the doors above.)

Now it changes.

Now measure the other jamb from the outside top, and mark it exactly the same as the hinge side. Now cut this one off too. .... but cut it on the “wrong” side of the line so that you will end up a saw blade shorter than you intended for it to be. The reason for this will be explained later. You just want to be sure the latch side of the jamb is about 1/8” shorter than necessary for possible adjustments at installation.

Congratulations. You now have this door frame ready to install.
Trimming the door will be discussed at the end of this article.

*********************************
STEP 4

Ready for the install.

Under all the bottoms of all your jambs that will sit on concrete, I want you to put either a piece of thin metal, or a small strip of roofing paper. Under no circumstances, anywhere in any construction, is any “untreated” wood to make direct contact with concrete or block walls. Installing your door jambs directly on a wood floor is no problem.

The key to a good door installation is mainly the correct installation of only one piece of wood, the hinge jamb. This simply means three things, straight, plumb (in all directions), and secure. Once you accomplish this, the rest of the door installation just naturally falls into place.

There are several ways carpenters go about this, but I will be telling you about only one. The one I think is the best. This is not to say someone else might not have a better way....... but they aren’t writing this.

This is the typical layout for the average interior door. As you can see, this one has three hinges. Many only have two hinges. So when I write about placing nails or screws at the hinge locations, I will be referencing this drawing. You will have to adjust your thinking to allow for where the hinges fall on your own particular doors.

The first thing we are going to do is fit the studs on the hinge side with three sets of two opposing (pointing towards each other) wedges Called “shims”) at each hinge location.

In the case of the door shown here, measure down from the bottom of the Rough Header piece about 8- ½”, and make a mark. This should put you about in the center of where the top hinge will fall.

Then do the same thing for the center hinge, again shooting for a dimension that will hit the middle of the hinge location. In this case, about 38”. (You don’t have to be all that accurate with these measurements.)

Now finish off with a location for the bottom hinge at about 67”.

What we are going to do is place a set of two wedges pretty much covering each of those marks. The reason we chose to place the wedges at these hinge locations is because it is at the hinge points that the door’s weight is concentrated. So it is there we want to fasten the jamb to the stud for the best support. Fastening only at the hinge locations also helps keep from deflecting the jamb piece, and keeps the wood straighter.

Starting at the top mark, cover the mark with a wedge held horizontally, (That’s parallel with the floor), placed flat against the stud. Now overlap that wedge with a second one, right on top of it, pointing in the opposite direction. Try to keep these wedges spaced about equally, left and right. Drive a tiny nail solidly through the two wedges to hold them in that overlapped position on the stud.

Before we go any farther, we need to take a measurement. Measure across the door opening from the face of those two wedges to the stud on the other side of the opening. It will probably be around 34” if you are installing a “two-eight” door. (That’s a 32” door... Called a “two-eight” because 32” is “two” feet and “eight” inches.) The measurement we just took is bigger because we usually allow two extra inches over nominal door size when building the Rough Opening so that the whole frame will fit in there.

Now, let’s check to see that the frame, indeed, WILL fit that opening with the wedges installed. Is the frame, measured across the top outside, smaller than the measurement you just took? It should be about ¼” to ½” smaller. If it is, good.... we can continue. If it is not, then pull the nail, and spread those wedges apart some to open up some space across the opening... Re-nail the wedges, and recheck the measurement process.

If you have verified that we can get our frame in the Rough Opening (with the wedges installed) and we still have a little slack to play with for adjustments, we can go on to setting the middle set of wedges.

Here, a 4’ level is helpful. But you can also use the 6’ level with the wooden blocks removed (Or just use the reverse side of the 6’ level so the blocks don’t interfere.)

As you may have already noticed, sliding the two wedges back and forth on top of one another creates a thicker or thinner area that they occupy. Slide them both toward each other, and they make a fatter section. Slide them apart, and the section gets thinner and thinner.

You are going to slide these next two wedges either together or apart till a level spanning the previously installed top wedges and these new wedges reads “plumb”. When you have a perfect bubble on the level, put another tiny nail in this second set of wedges.

Now go on down and do this same sliding technique from the center wedges you just installed to the bottom set (at the bottom hinge mark).
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Old 01-28-2011, 09:24 AM   #24
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When you are done, the surfaces of all three sets of wedges will make a straight, plumb line from top to bottom. Check it with the 6’ level. The three sets of wedges are now almost ready to have the door jamb installed on them. I say “almost” because most pre-set doors come with one set of the casing molding (one side) already installed on the jamb. Some even come with both sides installed. (Both sides is not cool, so we need to take at least one side off.) And we need to deal with the ends of the wedges sticking out past the wall before we can get the door in place.

Here’s how we do that.

Nail a few more small nails in all the wedges so that they won’t move around while we are cutting the projecting tails off them.

Using a SHARP utility knife, not a dull one (change the razor blade if you have to in order to get a SHARP one) score each of the wedges at the wall edge till, after eight or ten passes, you finally cut through them. Be careful, this is when even pros sometimes cut themselves by getting into too much of a hurry to force their cuts to go through quicker. Just keep scoring... eventually you’ll cut through. When all the wedges have been neatly cut off flush with the wall edges we can proceed. (Some carpenters saw the wedges [shims] off. I don’t because the sawing motion often wiggles the wedges loose. You can, of course use a saw if you choose.)

First thing, tap the hinge pins out of the hinges with a big nail or an old, skinny screwdriver. Put the hinge pins somewhere safe... they are easy to lose. A lot of guys put the pins back into the hinges on the jamb so they will be there when they need them. Remove the door, and set it aside for now.

Carefully pick up the now-much-lighter frame, and slide it into place. Make sure you have the hinges on the correct side for the way you want your door to swing.

Are you missing a screw from each of the hinges? In good door sets, you should be. This empty screw hole has been left empty for you to use a longer screw there, one that will extend back, well into the stud. Prepare this hole in each hinge by now drilling a 3/16” hole right in the center of the screw hole. You need to drill this hole so that you won’t split the jamb wood with a larger screw.

If you are not missing a screw, take one out of each hinge, and drill the hole all the way through the jamb with a 3/16” bit. Save the screw for another project; you’ll be using a longer one in its place.

Place the hinge side of the jamb flat up against the wedges, sitting on the floor, and cleanly aligned with the outside edges of the wall. Partially tap in a finish nail at the top and the bottom hinge locations to hold it in place.

Check the sides of the jamb for plumb with the 6” level (with the blocks of wood back on it.) If it reads good, carefully tap the finish nails on in till they are almost flush. Don’t dent the wood with the hammer head.

By the way, if you should dent the wood with your hammer, soak a cloth in water as hot as you can stand it, and saturate the dented wood with this hot water. The heated, wet wood will swell, usually taking all but the worst dents out.

Check the jamb for plumb again! Both on the side of the jamb, and on the face. The face should already be fine if you set the wedges correctly. If not, you can make some small adjustments by using more shims (wedges) where it needs to be moved out a little. Sometimes placing a clean 2 x 4 flat on the face of the jamb to protect it while you smack the 2 x 4 sharply with a hammer will move the jamb inward a bit.

But these kinds of adjustments should be avoided if possible. That’s why setting those wedges perfectly in the first place is so important. Do a good job there, and you won’t be messing with these adjustments later.

Go get the door, and put it back on the hinges. This is best done by putting in the top hinge pin first, and successively tapping in the lower ones.

Stand on the side of the door that has the “stops” (long strips of wood the door shuts against) on the jamb. Shut the door.

Holding the door shut against the stops, move the loose part of the jamb around some until everything fits smoothly together. (Like it might look when finished) Now slide the jamb and door forward or back, as a unit, to line up with the edge of the wall. Lightly partially nail a small finish nail through the jamb, into the stud at the top and bottom... taking care to keep everything aligned.

Gently open the door, walk through to the other side, and shut the door again.

Look up at the top piece of the frame. Is the space between the top of the door and the frame member (the header) equal all the way across? It’s probably a little tighter at the latch side. If so, slip a pry-bar under the latch side jamb at the floor, and adjust for equal reveal across the top of the door. (This is why you cut this jamb an eighth of an inch short way back at the beginning.) Often taking a nickel or a dime out of your pocket to use as a gauge for the size of that gap will help you get it perfect. Once the top reveal (gap space) is correct, carefully open the door, and drive the top finish nail the rest of the way in to be almost flush with the wood.

Starting at the top of the latch side jamb, begin checking the reveal down that side as you make it right slipping in twin opposed wedges between the jamb and frame. (You know this trick well by now... Slide them both toward each other, and they push the jamb toward the door. Slide them apart, and the section gets thinner and thinner, allowing the jamb to move away from the door.) Get a finish nail in the jamb, through those wedges, about every 18”.

The door is now set in place. Go run some long (2” to 2-1/2”) screws in the missing holes in the hinges to give it some strength there. If you feel you might want even more strength, you can remove as many screws as you want, one at a time, drilling your 3/16” holes, and replacing all of the original screws with new 2” to 2-1/2” screws. By the way, these are all usually #9 screws, made especially for door hinges.

Nail the side of the casing already in place to the studs. Then go put the other casing on the other side the same way you see this first side installed.

Just use a nail set on all your nails, putty them, and paint.

The door is now in. All you have left to do is install the lockset and striker. And the instructions for that should come inside each lockset package.

*******************************

How to trim off the bottom of the door.

Do all this as soon as you can after beginning to get the door somewhat solidly hung in place. Don’t wait till after all the trim is in place and the lockset is installed. In fact, this is best checked right after you get the hinge side nailed in place. All the latch side can still be loose.

First, shut the door. Now look at the bottom all the way across. If it is level, you’re fine. But what if one side looks higher than the other? Put a tape on the higher side, and check the distance to the floor. If it is too high, you may have missed your original estimates of floor covering height. Not good. But the redeeming part is, if really necessary, a door can un-nailed, un-screwed, and adjusted. Be more careful on the next door.

But if it is just what you hoped for, or even a little low, you can work with it.

Let’s say it is the perfect height. Great. Go make a mark on the door at the same height from the floor at the other side. Draw a straight line between these two points, then take the door off the hinges, and put it on some sawhorses. Or you could wait till the door is on the sawhorses to draw that line... a little easier that way. You’re ready to cut the bottom off on your line.

Same thing if the space at the bottom measured a little low. Just mark where you estimated from your knowledge of the floor covering intended for use that the bottom should be. Do this at both sides. Then get the door on some sawhorses, and draw that line.

Saws tend to tear up door surfaces when the teeth of the blade bite through. To help minimize this, we do two things.

One, we put a long strip of mastic tape on the door (on both sides) where the line will be drawn. Then we re-draw the line on top of the tape. The tape actually does help keep the tear-out from the teeth to a manageable level.

Secondly, we carefully score the door, through the tape, along the line with that sharp utility knife we still have somewhere. Score it several times, till it’s at least 1/8” deep. Do this on both sides, being extra careful that you correctly transferred the line to the other side.

Tip: When you are scoring with a utility knife, DO NOT bear down with a lot of pressure, trying to reduce the number of passes you’ll have to make. Just keep making light, repeated passes. You will eventually cut it deep enough. It would surprise you how many professionals ruin doors when excessive pressure on the knife causes it to swerve off the path, right across a finished surface........... or worse, right across a thumb. Happens all the time.
Now, here’s the tricky part. You are NOT going to cut right on the line. You are going to cut the door just a light 1/16” longer than that line. Do your utmost to be sure the saw blade is perfectly square with the table plate of the saw. Use a “try-square” to check this. And keep your saw cut just a hair away from your scribe line all the way across.

The little bit of edge fuzz that is left because you did not cut quite to the scribe line is easily brushed to a neat edge with some fine sandpaper. This sanding also creates a slightly rounded edge that won’t snag on the carpet. That’s a real “pro” touch.

©Willie T

Thanks again for doing this Willie!

DM

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It's hot outside. Keep the exterior doors and windows closed if running the A/C? Taylor Crockett HVAC 3 07-07-2008 05:04 PM
pre hung Masonite interior doors Pawl Carpentry 5 03-29-2008 10:52 AM
pre hung doors Pawl Carpentry 11 03-14-2008 11:51 AM
When do I hang my doors? Crimson Ghost Carpentry 6 02-06-2006 03:19 PM




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