Forum Title: help framing double door in expanded basement (cut foundation)
We recently put an addition on our house and had a full foundation poured so we could also expand the basement. I had them cut the existing foundation wide enough for a double door and now it's time for me to put the door up. The rough opening is 62W x 81H (but the height is measured from the concrete floor so will reduce with flooring). I don't think there's any way I'll be able to get a pre-hung unit down there--all routes to the basement involve tight turns one way or another. So it looks like I'll have to do it the old fashioned way and build the jamb in place. I've never done this sort of thing before so I'm unsure of proper offsets and how to frame and then sheetrock this doorway. Here's a pic of the existing, finished side of the door opening, showing the cut foundation, the double 2x6 PT jack studs, and the approx depth from the sheetrock to the edge of the stud: This is the unfinished, new room side of the opening. The jack stud edges are roughly aligned with the outside edge of the existing concrete wall, but the concrete wall is thicker at the bottom and thus the picture shows the plumb studs inset from the outside edge of the concrete wall. I believe I need to figure out how the new basement room walls will be framed/insulated, so I can know the wall width in order to know the depth to install the door. Here's a top view drawing of the existing situation: Here's a top view of one proposed solution and some notes on an alternative. I'm thinking if I put the door jamb between the existing jack studs, the doors won't be able to open much past 90 degrees. I think I should frame a new rough opening even with the sheetrock in the new space, to allow the doors to open fully. Thanks for any thoughts and tips. -Brett
Category: Windows & Doors Post By: ELIZABETH JONES (Alhambra, CA), 01/26/2019

You can't change the door from the living area/laundry room to the garage to fiberglass. It has to be fire rated and I don't think any common FG doors are. You say the current door is composite? Is it hollow or solid? Solid is normally acceptable, hollow is not. You could change the slab for a solid core door which would help somewhat with insulation as well. How thick is the door with glass? I know you said exterior type, but you can get thinner doors with glass as well. Exterior should be 1 3/4 thick. Interior is normally 1 3/8 Were the laundry room and garage added on after the house was built? That might explain the door with glass. You might try just weatherstripping the doors initially, if they don't have any. Air leakage will allow a lot of cold air through. Even replacing/sealing the doors may not help if the walls aren't insulated.

- DEBBIE HARVEY (Sparks, NV), 02/24/2019

Quote: I don't think there's any way I'll be able to get a pre-hung unit down there--all routes to the basement involve tight turns one way or another. You plan on putting a 60 wide double door yet you have no way of getting the unit to the opening? What is on the outside that you would want a double door but not plan on enough room to get something that large down there. Is it a walk out basement? Why can't you get there from the outside?

- KEN SHARP (Gastonia, NC), 02/23/2019

Thanks for the replies and sorry for the delay, I was subscribed to this thread but didn't see any notification. First, the reason for the double door was to have the ability to have the 2 adjoining finished rooms have the ability to feel more like a single space with both doors wide open yet be able to close them off when needed. The original plan for the new room was a home theater or rec room. There's a pool table in the currently finished space that may move to the new room, so it'd be a bonus not to have to fully disassemble it. The basement access is through a bulkhead into the existing basement. I believe a pre-hung unit would not be able to make the transition from the angle of the stairs to the basement floor without hitting a headroom limit. @joecaption1: thanks for the info. Sounds like a real challenge for me, nothing wrong with that...what else would I do when I get home from work...relax? I understood most of what you said, although I was surprised about the jamb extensions. I was thinking that the rest of the opening would be sheetrocked but it didn't seem right to have sheetrock butting up against the jamb so the extension solves this. Here's a picture I drew up with my latest thoughts before I read the replies above: Regarding a one piece rough opening, that doesn't seem possible even with 2x12s? The concrete is 10 thick then walls on either side...at least 18 wide total, wider with 2 XPS under the new walls. That also means the jamb extension would need to be even wider. Regarding the level of the floor, I figure I can deal with cutting the bottom of the door to clear it and adding sweeps if desired. So I think the latest thinking would have me replace the new sheetrock inside the opening in the drawing above with jamb extensions, probably biscuit jointed to the primary jamb. Let me know if I'm on the right track. Thanks

- LENA HIGGINS (Pontiac, MI), 03/05/2019

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