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How to Frame an Interior Door

There are two methods used for framing an interior door and two types of framing material, steel and wood. Also there are two methods used to finish the header area over the door frame. These methods are using 2×4’s or 2×12’s to form the door header for the rough framing of the interior door. The 2×4 method requires cutting the 2×4’s to the correct door header length width and using what is called a “cripple stud” cut.

The second method is to measure and cut two 2×12’s to width (equal to original opening) and add ½ “plywood spacers between the pieces of 2×12. These are nailed together and are used to form the door header. The door jamb is placed inside the framing space created.Both methods involve using king and jack braces (studs) and follow door header widths of 2×4’s no longer than three feet, and 2×12’s no longer than eight feet.

Whether nailing the casing on the outside of the door frame directly to the studs, or nailing the casings to the sub-sheathing, the determination is three ways, how the jamb is to be installed, by the interior wallboard thickness and the sub-sheathing.


• 2×4 or 2×12 Wood, scrap wood and plywood
• Hammer and Nails (6d to 12)
• Level, T-square and measuring tape
• Hand saw or table saw
• Gloves, safety glasses and steel toe boots


• Always add at least a ¼” added on the width and height of the rough frame
• Account for natural wood shrinkage (shims can be used)
• The floor should be level
• Steel stud framing replacement metal screws need to be longer