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pre hung doors vs slab doors

Do you want to replace one of your interior doors? Are you intending to buy one for your new home and you have started looking at different types of doors? Having difficulties in deciding between pre-hung doors and slab doors?  

As both types of doors are really good and offer quite a lot of benefits, we are here to help you out.

We’ll guide you on when pre-hung doors are a better option and when you should choose slab doors. So, without further ado, let’s get started.

What is a Pre-hung Door?

It is a type of door that is already assembled. It is a self-contained unit and comes with a frame that is already attached to a slab. It comes with everything needed to install and setup. The hinges are already installed and the door can already open and close. All you have to do is install the doorknob. The pre-hung door unit has five core parts:

  • Frame;
  • door;
  • hinges;
  • mortises cut in the door.

a pre-cut hole for the doorknob


Here are some highlighted advantages of pre-hung doors:

  • The door is ready to install;
  • the installation process is quite hassle-free;
  • the hinges are pre-attached to the frame;
  • you won't need to cut mortises;
  • it comes with necessary hardware;
  • all you have to do is secure them in place.

If there is need for new construction work, pre-hung door makes it quite convenient and fast.

Given that it comes with its frame, you can easily install it on the location that is open and exposed. People also choose pre-hung doors because there is no need to build the door frame from scratch. If you find that the existing door frame in your house is already damaged and it’ll be impossible to hang a slab door, then it is best to have the entire door area demolished. Then, you can easily start with a pre-hung door.

Pre-hung doors are also considered a good option for the exterior of the house. The exterior pre-hung doors are already weather-tight and there is no need for tight-fitting. If you are not much experienced, installing an insulated exterior slap door can be challenging. So, we’d recommend you to stick to pre-hung exterior door.


Here are some highlighted cons of a pre-hung door:

  • It is expensive as compared to a slab door;
  • it may require adjustments to fit properly;
  • it is much heavier than slap door, so managing it alone is difficult.

A pre-hung door is quite expensive as compared to a slab door. In fact, you can save quite a bit of money if you decide to buy a slab door and other material. One of the main cons of a pre-hung door is that it is heavy and hard to manage. A pre-hung door is bulky and can weigh around 50 and 100 pounds. Although the installation of a pre-hung door is quite easy, you’d still have to make sure that it is correctly positioned and it means that there can be a need for a few adjustments.

What is a Slab Door?

A slab door doesn’t come with a frame, and it is a basic, stripped-down door. It often doesn't have a cutout for the hardware or hinges. It can be a rectangular slab of wood, fiberglass or steel. Most of these doors are flat or paneled. So, installing a slab door can be a bit challenging for you. Keep in mind that it doesn't come with a frame, hinges, or the hardware. If you’re looking for something super custom, a slab door can be an excellent choice.


  • As compared to a pre-hung unit, a slab door is less expensive;
  • it enables you to install vintage doors;
  • the door gives you more flexibility with the look, size, and design;
  • they are lighter and easier to handle.

If saving money is one of your primary concerns, a slab door is a pretty good option. This door is not a bad option for an interior door because it gives more design flexibility and there is no issue of waterproofing. Although a slab door requires more time in installation as you need to create its frame, there is no denying that it gives you more freedom to be creative – something that a pre-hung door doesn’t give you.


  • It requires carpentry;
  • you might need professional help to make the frame and get it installed;
  • it requires mortises to be cut

The installation of a slab door involves plenty of practice and a steady hand. In case you are doing one-for-one installation, then installing a slab door is more comfortable. It is because the new door has the same size and configuration as your previous door. However, if there is any variation in the size and shape, it can take a lot of your time. If you are planning on installing slab doors in your entire house and you do not have the experience and skills, it can be costly for you.

When Should You Choose A Pre-Hung Door?

If you’re planning on doing full renovation of your house, going with pre-hung doors isn’t a wrong choice at all. They are durable and would save you a lot of time. If you are looking to replace your exterior door, a pre-hung door can be a good option for you. And lastly, you should choose a pre-hung door if the existing door frame is severely damaged or rotten. You should re-use the damaged or rotten frame. Simply take out the damaged structure and install a pre-hung door.

When Should You Choose A Slab Door?

If you want to save your money and replace the doors of your house without emptying your bank account, then slab doors would do an excellent job. If the condition of the frame is good enough, then you can replace it with a slab door that has the same size. If you don’t mind extra work, then go with slab doors. They’ll save you a lot of your money, and you can also go for vintage doors.

Have Something to Ask?

You can check our collection of Pre-hung Doors and Slab Doors, and in case you have any questions then please feel free to contact us anytime.