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General: Determining the Swing/Hand of a Door

One of the most puzzling and misunderstood issues involving home maintenance is how to determine the swing of a door. The answer has nothing to do, as some report; with the hand you use to open the door, and is one of the simplest concepts to master.

How to determine the hand of a doorMany years ago, probably before most of you were born, I was hanging around a construction site and overheard two carpenters who were installing doors in a house. They were calling out the swing of the doors they were to install. I looked at what they were doing and couldn’t figure out how they could determine the door swing so easily. So, in my teenage eagerness to learn, I asked, and learned a simple technique I’ve shared with many.

All you have to do is either visualize or physically stand in the doorway, placing your back to the hinge side of the door. Then, if the door swings to your right, it is a right hand, to the left, a left hand. This works for both interior and exterior doors.


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