You can expect to pay anywhere between $200–$700 to replace a door frame.
The style of the door and the frame’s materials can affect the cost.
Frames can be made of wood, fiberglass, vinyl, or glass.
Wood frames are the most common and readily available.
Frames built with softwood varieties are the most economical and easiest to work with.
The average cost of replacing a door frame in your home is approximately $400, including two hours of labor at $70 per hour. The frame itself can cost anywhere from $80 to $500, depending on the type, material, and style. Specialized door styles such as barn doors and French doors might cost more, given that their average dimensions are usually larger than a single interior or exterior door. If the wall surrounding your door opening has been damaged and needs to be repaired, this could also increase your total costs.
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How Much Does It Cost to Replace a Door Frame by Type?
Replacement costs for a door frame depend in large part on the type of door you’re working with and whether it’s an exterior door (one leading into the home from the outdoors) or an interior one. Typically, exterior door frames cost a bit more on average.
Exterior Door Frames
Exterior door frames range in cost between $130 to $400. Security steel door frames for exterior doors can cost substantially more, starting at $200 up to $900 (in some cases, even more).
Interior Door Frames
On average, interior door frames cost between $120 and $230. However, that average cost varies for specialized styles. For example, pocket door frames average between $200 and $340, while barn door track kits average in price from $170 to $300. French door frames cost an average of $180 to $240.
Sliding Door Frames
Sliding doors that are typically used as interior closet doors have frames that include a track and vinyl rollers. Door frame kits for sliding doors typically cost an average of around $350.
Door Frame Replacement Cost Breakdown
The two major components in the cost breakdown for replacing a door frame are materials and labor.
Most homeowners choose wooden door frames (and doors), although some choose other materials for added strength and durability. In the main, wooden door frames are made from softwood species such as pine, hemlock, and fir. The softness of the wood makes it easier to work with and usually less expensive. Other options include vinyl, aluminum, and fiberglass door frames. All of these materials offer decent insulation and resistance to scratching.
In addition to the frame itself, your materials for this project can also include fasteners, flashing, caulking, and shims. Typically, for a single door frame replacement, these additional costs will range between $10 and $20.
Replacing a door frame takes about three hours for an experienced professional. That labor is generally billed at an hourly rate of between $70 and $125 per hour for a total cost ranging from $230 to $380.
Cost to Replace a Door Frame Yourself
It’s certainly possible to replace a door frame yourself if you have a moderate level of basic DIY home improvement skills and experience. However, given the complexity of the work and the several tools you’ll need to get the job done, hiring a professional door frame installer may be worth the cost.
“When building a door frame, it’s always better to create a larger opening than a smaller one,” says Bob Tschudi, Angi Expert Review Board member and general contractor in Raleigh, NC. “The frame is what is called the ‘rough opening,’ and any gaps will be covered by the casing and trim.”
You’ll save on the total labor cost ($230 to $380). You’ll also need access to specific tools. Some of those tools are commonly found in many homeowners’ basic tool kits, such as a power drill, a screwdriver, a hammer, a utility knife, and a tape measure. You’ll also need a hacksaw, a crowbar, a wood chisel, nails, screws, sealant, and other materials. On average, these required tools and materials cost a minimum of $150.
In addition, you’ll need basic safety equipment. In this case, that usually means a pair of protective safety goggles, which cost between $10 and $30 depending on the style and features you choose. You’ll also need gloves to protect your hands, which cost anywhere from $10 to $20 on average.
Doors are critical elements of your home’s security, safety, and environmental comfort, and the door frame is a crucial part of how well your door sits, closes, and locks. If you have sufficient carpentry skills, and the assistance of a skilled friend, replacing a door frame is a viable DIY project. Otherwise, consider hiring a door frame installation company or a general contractor to complete the job.
4 Ways You Can Save Money While Replacing a Door Frame
To reduce the costs of replacing a door frame, hire a professional only after you ask for and evaluate written quotes from at least three professional installation companies or general contractors.
Additionally, take extra care when removing the existing framing and trim. You may be able to reuse trim if it hasn’t been damaged during its removal, and avoiding additional damage to the surrounding wall can save you money, too.
“Before we remove any painted trim, we always score the line between the trim and the wall or material to which it is secured,” Tschudi says. “Otherwise, you risk pulling a latex sheet of paint off the wall, which you’ll need to repair or repaint.”
If you have experience and general carpentry skills, consider tackling this job yourself. Eliminating the labor costs can cut your overall costs for this project roughly 50%, assuming the job is completed accurately.
Finally, consider whether the frame needs replacing at all. In some cases, a door frame can be repaired instead of replaced, assuming that the damage isn’t too extensive. Repair work should cost significantly less than a full replacement, especially if you can handle the work yourself.
Frequently Asked Questions
The difference between a door frame and a door jamb is that one is part of the other. A door frame consists of:
Side jambs: The flat vertical part of the frame that runs up to the left and right of the door
Head jamb: The horizontal part of the frame at the very top of the door
Mullions or mulls (optional): The vertical piece that joins two separate doors into one frame, often concealed with a mull casing
So, the side and head door jambs are part of the overall door frame.
If your door frame is exhibiting any signs of wood rot, it’s best to have it replaced unless the rot is truly minimal. Signs of wood rot include flaking and disintegrating bits of wood, apparent misalignment that doesn’t permit the door to close as it should, and darkened spots of wood on the frame.
Yes, you can replace only the door frame without replacing the door assuming that the door is in acceptable condition. You’ll need to remove the door first and then rehang it after you’ve replaced the frame. If the door has sustained any damage or significant wear and tear, it’s a good time to replace the door as well, since you’ll have to remove the door anyway.
Start your door frame replacement project by removing the door’s hinges and hinge pins to take off the door itself. Use the utility knife to remove trim and a hammer and chisel to remove any shims.
Next measure the door frame carefully for length and width, and the jamb for depth (or thickness). Remove the door jamb with a saw to help reduce wall damage, and take out any nails with the claw end of your hammer.
Install the new frame using galvanized nails and shims to ensure it hangs properly. Install new trim and then add caulking to the trim edges.