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An In-Depth Look Into Hollow Metal Door Frames

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Although wooden door frames are often recognized for their aesthetics, hollow metal door frames are an excellent alternative for commercial establishments and industrial environments that demand a frame with strength and durability.

Hollow metal door frames are constructed from heavy-duty materials such as steel that have been welded together and shaped to form a frame, making them a great fit where strength is a necessity. Along with its reinforced endurance, this type of door frame can offer a wide range of benefits and designs.

So let’s first take the time to identify the different types of hollow metal door frames, the advantages they provide, and some tips that will help you install a hollow metal door frame with confidence.

Types of Frames

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Before we get into how to install hollow metal door frames, it is important to first understand what types of frames are at your disposal. There are numerous different styles of configurations one can pick from when installing a frame, and the one you decide upon depends on both your preference and the requirements you may have for your door frame.

1. Single Rabbet

Single rabbet refers to a frame that has a single groove or channel, known as a rabbet, which is cut into the frame to accommodate the door’s edge.

Typically, the rabbet is cut into the side of the frame facing the room where the door will be installed. This allows the door to have a secure and tight fit into the frame.

A single rabbet frame is usually used in interior applications as these locations are not subject to extreme wind or weather conditions. It is also a more cost-effective option compared to other types of hollow metal door frames.

2. Double Rabbet

A double rabbet is a type of door frame configuration that features two rabbets cut into the frame. They are cut into opposite sides of the frame, effectively securing the door from both sides.

In comparison to the previous hollow metal door frame profile, the double rabbet offers additional security being that the door is secured from both sides. This makes it an ideal option for outside doors or for areas where extra security is required.

Double rabbet frames can also be used for soundproofing due to their airtight seal around the door. Added to this, they can be used in areas with varying wall thickness levels, making them a flexible alternative door frame profile.

3. Stepped Rabbet

A stepped rabbet is a specialized door frame design with a series of steps cut into the rabbet groove, allowing the door to sit neatly within the frame and surrounding wall. This creates a sleek and modern appearance favored in commercial or high-end residential properties.

The stepped rabbet can be customized to fit different types of wall thicknesses, making it a versatile option for different building styles. These are recommended if you’re looking for a clean, seamless look for your hollow metal door frame.

4. Equal Rabbet

Another type of hollow metal door frame is the equal rabbet, which has a rabbet groove cut equally on both sides of the frame. This allows the door to simultaneously sit smoothly with the interior and exterior surfaces of the wall.

This rabbet is generally used in commercial hollow metal door frames or industrial settings because of its durability and security. They are typically composed of strengthened materials like aluminum or steel, allowing them to endure harsh environments and heavy use.

The equal rabbet design can also provide a tight seal around the door, which improves energy efficiency and noise cancellation. It is also versatile in the sense that it can accommodate varying wall thicknesses.

5. Double Egress

The double egress design allows for two doors to be installed within the frame, with each door swinging in opposing directions. This design makes it easy to have traffic going in both directions through the doorway.

This type of frame is typically equipped with hardware that allows it to be easily opened from either side, making it ideal for emergency. They can consist of various materials such as metal, wood, and glass.

These are just a popular few of the many types of hollow metal door frames. When looking into the different frame types, be sure to select one that fits your desired specifications.

Benefits of Hollow Metal Door Frames

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Hollow metal door frames can provide your property with numerous benefits if installed correctly, such as increased durability or sound insulation. Listed below are five ways in which you can benefit from having one set up in your building:


All types of hollow metal door frames are made to be durable when going through a proper installation. You can expect that these frames will last for years, withstanding the elements of the weather and regular use.


With a heavy metal door frame, you can rest assured knowing that your points of entry are strengthened and secured. Next to secure locks, these frames are great for keeping out potential intruders or unwanted guests.


These door frames are constructed from materials and metals that are flame resistant and can endure high temperatures of heat.


With the versatility of hollow metal door frames, you can have one installed with great flexibility when it comes to wall thickness, shape, and size.

Sound Insulating

Depending on the type of door frame you choose, it can be set up in such a way that sound penetration will not cause any issues.

Installation Tips

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Installing these types of door frames can be difficult, but with the right tools and some patience, you can set one up yourself if you’ve already decided not to go with a professional. Keep these tips in mind when deciding to install your hollow metal door frame.

Measure Properly

Accurate measurements are crucial for a successful installation. Measure the height and width of the door opening to ensure that the frame fits perfectly.

Use Safety Gear

Always wear appropriate safety gear, including gloves and safety glasses, when working with tools and construction materials.

Obtain The Right Tools

You will need to collect the required tools for the job, such as a level, a hammer, a drill, screws, and shims. Make sure to gather the necessary equipment and hardware before installation.

Ensure Correct Level and Plumb

Use a level to ensure that the frame is properly adjusted and plumb before securing it in place. The door may not close properly if the frame is offset.

Use Shims For Uneven Surface Adjustment

Shims may be needed to adjust the frame if the door is not perfectly square. They can also be used to verify that the frame is level and plumb.

Test and Seal Gaps

Test the door thoroughly once the frame is set in place. Ensure that there are no gaps present between the door and frame. Seal any noticeable ones with foam or weatherstripping to prevent drafts.

Take Your Time

Take your time and frequently your progress at each step. This will help in ensuring a problem-free installation. Mistakes can easily be made if you rush through the process or forget a step.

Key Takeaway

Installing a hollow metal door frame requires patience, precision, and the right tool set. Proper leveling, shimming for uneven surfaces, and testing for gaps are important for a secure and long-lasting frame. Once completed, this installation will add both functionality and stylistic appeal to any building.

Strengthen your door’s security with locks from Alpine Lock and Safe!

A durable and reliable lock is just as important as a sturdy door frame. If you need a locksmith in Avon, CO, come visit us to get your new door fitted with our most secure locks!

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