General Interior Door Terminology

December 23, 2009

Interior doors are just like any other architectural element, they seem to have a specific language of their own. Before choosing an interior door, there is terminology that can help you choose the best interior door for your use, and more importantly, for your style:

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  • Arched doors: A door with an arched top rail and arched frame. This can also be called a "round top door"
  • Brick mold: Exterior trim that covers the gap between the jamb, which is the wood surrounding the door, and the wall
  • Caming: Caming is the metal banded strips that join panels of glass together in a design, it's often used in stained and leaded glass
  • Frame: The set of jambs that holds the door unit together.
  • French door: A door with glass panels separated by wood mullions, the strips that hold individual panes, termed lites, in place
  • Left swing door: This term is used to describe which side holds the hinges and to which side the door swings. It's more confusing than it sounds, as even professionals can get this confused. If you are standing outside looking at your front door, and the door swings into the house, a left swing door will have the hinges on your left and swing to your left. A right hand swing door will have the hinges on the right and swing to the right.
  • Out swing: When the door swings to the outside of the room when opened
  • Pre-hung door system: Doors or combinations of doors and sidelights put together with jamb and hinge that make a self contained working door system.
  • Sidelight: A fixed panel of wood and glass next to door.
  • Slab: The slab is the door only, there are no frames, jambs or parts included.

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