Right-Hand vs. Left-Hand Doors: How To Choose

There are many details to consider when buying a new door, including the style, color or stain, size, width, and much more. With so much to consider, the process can seem overwhelming to new DIYers and homeowners. One tiny detail that many people neglect is the orientation of a doorway’s opening. While this may seem like an afterthought, the way your door opens can make a big difference in the convenience of a home. Right-hand vs. left-hand doors: how to choose is luckily not as confusing as it seems!

What Are Left versus Right-Handed Doors?

Right-hand versus left-hand doors refers to where the hinges are placed on the door—either the left or right side. This can have a very big impact on how a door is hung, as hinges typically only swing out in one direction. Hanging a door opposite of the way the hinges are placed can result in doors that awkwardly swing outward. You don’t want to push guests off your porch rather than welcome them in. Doors that are left or right-handed are both intended to open inward when mounted correctly, so they must be intentionally selected to fit where you want them to go in your home.

How To Tell Which Doors You Have

The best way to tell which direction your doors swing is to experiment with the entryways in your home. Stand inside a room, facing the door. The door should open inward into the room if it’s oriented correctly. The direction of the door is dictated by whether the door swings inward to the left or right. You can also reference the side that the hinges are on when you are facing the door from the inside. Hinges on the right indicate a right-hand door, and hinges on the left are left-hand doors.

Which Do I Choose?

Ultimately, how to choose right-hand vs. left-hand doors all comes down to preference. Even with custom wood doors, you have the choice of what direction you need your door to swing. The best way to decide is to experiment with how a left-hand or right-hand door would feel in each entryway. If you are a right-handed person and choose a left-handed door, you will have to reach across your body to open the door. The same is true for a left-handed person opening a right-handed door. Some people will simply find that one way feels off-kilter to them.

Space is also an important factor to consider. Depending on how a room is arranged, a door might serve better opening against a blank wall. Doors that swing away from walls or in a certain direction may change the shape of a room and take up space when left opened.

Nick’s Building Supply has over thirty years of experience building high-quality doors and entryways. Explore our beautiful collection and reach out to us today to speak with our professional team. We are ready to help you with all your DIY projects or your business’s construction supply needs.