When we are building a house and ever been around the developer or in a wooden market, you might have heard some typical terminology which you may not been aware of their meaning. You may think about the door and its beauty but we think that door frame is simply the frame of the door like photo frame but it is not so. The door frame is an important part of the door. There are many parts that make up a door frame. When we make an external door frame it is mostly made of the soft or hard wood but when we make the internal door frames, it may be of wood, metal, plastic or even natural stones which depends on depth and thickness of the wall along with so many other factors.As we all know, the accommodation is essential for everyone. In olden period, primitive men also used to make their shelter in caves for safety and security purpose and nowadays, houses have taken place whether it is small or big & luxurious. In the house, doors are a significant component for the same purpose. It allows the entry or exit and provides privacy & safety as well. Thus, it’s essential that doors are strong enough and that depends on various factors like, material of door and door frame. In this article, we are only focusing on the important parts of a door frame, particularly the wooden door frame.
According to ‘R. Chudley’ (Author of Construction Technology, Volume-1), a door frame is attached to the opening in which a door is to be fixed; it gives a border for the door. The door frame is the associate to which a door is fixed or hung.
The door frame consists of an assembly of horizontal and vertical members which are placed at the top, bottom and sides of an opening so as to form an enclosure providing support for a door. Generally, the door frame is made of wood. However, the recent development has made the granite, marble, metal, aluminium, and precast concrete frame more popular and famous. Stones, when applied in full width of the wall, looks neat, clean and gorgeous and also easy to maintain.Frame consists of almost 50 % or even more of the total consumption of wood while making a door. Hence, wooden frame turns out to be very costly and hence are not much in use now. Granite or other natural stones like polished Kota or Jaisalmer stone have become popular basically, due to its less cost. Stones do not decay due to moisture and termite and are insect free, and do not need frequent paint or polishing. The arrival of the latest stone cutting and polishing tools along with good quality adhesive (construction chemicals) have made the use of stones easy and popular.
The Main Parts of a Door Frame
The various parts of a door frame or element of a door frame which is used in connection with door are head, jamb, horn, sill, hold fasts, etc. All such parts are not defined in stone frame as the definition permits and henceforth used for wooden frames only. The size of the frame members has to be selected based on the size of openings. The larger the opening, larger the cross section of frame required, hence making it more costly.
01. Head of Door Frame
The head is the top horizontal member of the frame.
02. Sill of Door Frame
The sill is the bottom horizontal member of the frame which may or may not be provided. The main reason for omission of sill frame is that the floor acts as a sill itself. Nowadays the door frame with sill is outdated but, in the olden days, sills used to be provided. According to ‘G.S. Birdie and T.D. Ahuja’ (Author of Building Construction and Construction Materials) presence of sill gives strength and rigidity to both, the door frame and shutter and also prevents the entry of insects, dust etc. It also helps in preventing the bending of the vertical members particularly at lower ends both during and after construction. With such advantages, it gives one disadvantage that it causes an obstruction in the movement, and cleaning or washing of the room.
03. Horn of Door Frame
It is a horizontal projection of the top and bottom member of the frame to enable the fixing of the frame in the wall opening. The length of the horn in door is kept about 10 to 15cm.
04. Jamb of Door Frame
The door jamb is the vertical wall face of a door opening which supports the door frame. In the door frame, jamb is the vertical portion of the door frame in which a door is secured. If you want to open and lock your door properly, door jamb is important.
05. Holdfasts of Door Frame
These are the mild steel flat bars that are used to hold the frame in position. These bars are generally bent into z-shape and fixed on one end to the frame and other end is inserted in the wall. The horizontal length of hold fast is 20 cm. Generally, minimum 3 holdfasts on each side of the door are recommended. They should be properly painted before fixing. If holdfasts are not provided with the frame the door may loosen due to sudden forceful striking of door shutters with the frame due to strong winds. This might have happened at your house too.
06. Rebate of Door Frame
It is a depression or recess made all around the door frame, on one side of which, the door shutter is fixed by the means of hinges. The rebate cut is usually 12mm wide and depth equal to the thickness of the shutter. Door rebates or rabbets are associated with door jambs, the vertical sides of a door frame. In case of stone you need to fix two stones of different width, and one stone over the other to create rebate for shutter to fit.
07. Threshold of Door Frame
This is a cross wooden piece fixed to the floor under a door frame which forms the sill and may be provided, if required.
08. Transom of Door Frame
It is a horizontal member of a frame, which is employed to sub-divide a door opening horizontally.
09. Mullion of Door Frame
It is a vertical member of frame, which is employed to sub-divide a door vertically.
In the olden days, wooden frame with panelled doors was the most popular device. With an increase in construction activity and reduction in forests, the teak wood is now scarce and costly and not at all affordable, unless you have the huge treasure to make your luxurious dream home. Hence in the last three decades, various alternatives have been discovered. The concrete frame was an easiest available option, but they never become popular due to its limitation of screw holding capacity and heavyweight. Though otherwise, it beats the wooden frame in all respects. The MS angle, hollow steel tubes etc. were used on a smaller scale. However, due to problems of corrosion, they could not be successful. The natural stones like granite or polished Kota of appropriate thickness are definitely a better choice but could not be put into use till the tools for cutting, grinding, polishing them, were easily available. Nowadays these stones are popular as it can be fixed with adhesive or anchor fasteners. They can also hold screws. As mentioned above, stone frames have become more popular as they are not affected by moisture, or they do not corrode, nor there is any threat from termite and at the same time looks decent, attractive, neat & clean.
The door frame is set around the perimeter of the opening to provide the needed support for a door and to hold the door in place. Therefore, the door frames are essential parts of a door which provides security and safety to our house. While choosing a material for your door frame, you need to be alert. We hope the above basic guidelines of parts of a door frame will help you to choose the best fit on material for the door frame of your home.