How to Measure For a Sliding Barn Door

How to Measure For a Sliding Barn Door

How to Measure a Door in 4 Easy Steps

How to Measure for a Traditional Hinged Door

  1. Measure the Door Slab
  2. Remove the Trim
  3. Measure the Frame Size
  4. Measure the Rough Opening

How to Measure for a Sliding Door

  1. Measure the Door Opening
  2. Measure the Trim
  3. Decide on Overlap
  4. Measure Remaining Space
Measuring a door incorrectly may result in purchasing a door that is too big or too small. A door that doesn’t fit means a lot of extra work, either purchasing another door or cutting the opening to fit the door. All of this will make your project last longer and cost more than expected.The standard interior door width is 32-inches, and the standard exterior door width is 36-inches. However, you run the risk of getting the wrong size door for your specific opening. Even if it turns out your door opening is a standard size, it’s better to know this before you select a new door, rather than find out after that you have the wrong size.Whether you need to know how to measure for a new door or how to measure a door for replacement, these 4 steps will work for you. Either way, the good news is, that as long as you measure the door correctly, installing a new door is a relatively simple process you can DIY. 

How to Measure for a Barn Sliding Door Track

1. Choose the Right Type of Sliding Door Hardware Kit

bypass barn door hardwareflat track hardware kitbarn door latch

7. Double the Width of Doors

  • A single door measures 38 inches. Your track length will be 38 x 2, or 76 inches.
  • A set of double doors measures 80 inches. Your track length will be 80 x 2, or 160 inches.
  • A door opening measures 36 inches. Your width is 36 x 2, or 72 inches. Now, add the four extra inches of cushion, giving you a 76-inch measurement for the track.


Tips for Measuring

The entire process to measure a door is relatively simple. However, some tips can help simplify the process even more and there are some things to keep in mind when measuring for replacement doors or new doors. 
  • Take three measurements. For width, measure across at the top, the middle and the bottom.For height, measure from top to bottom at the right, middle and left.  This will help ensure you are getting consistent and accurate measurements.
  • When taking measurements, round down rather than round up. A slightly smaller door will still fit, whereas a larger door is unlikely to fit.
  • The easiest way to note down measurements is with a diagram. You can either draw one yourself. However, printing a photo of your doorway may be an even easier way of noting the measurements. You can draw directly on the picture or diagram. This will help a professional door salesperson find you the perfect size door. 
  • Working with a company dedicated to high-quality doors can simplify the process of how to order a barn door because they will already know exactly what measurements are needed and can give you additional guidance to ensure you get the right sliding door.
  • When measuring double doors or French doors you want to measure the size of each door. To get the total width of the rough opening, you’ll need to add the width of each door together as well as add an additional 2-inches. For the height of the rough opening, you’ll want to add an additional 2 ½ inches. 

Need more explanation? Casing or No Casing That is the question?

First you need to determine whether or not there is casing (often referred to as trim) around your opening or if it is simply a sheetrocked door opening.  This is the most important detail to get started as it will affect the size of your barn door.  It is possible that your opening has been sheetrocked all the way around and does not have a jamb or casing.  This is very common in new construction. Below are a couple images of each instance that illustrate the difference between a sheetrocked or cased opening.

Measuring Wall Space Track Length

In addition to the door itself, you have to measure the wall space to ensure there’s enough room for the door to open all the way. 

Measuring track length is very straightforward – take your door width and multiply by 2. A 36” wide door would need 72” of track length.

To check for wall space, set a tape measure to your calculated door width (in this case, 36”) and measure from the outside edge of the door opening or the molding, and leave a few extra inches of buffer room at the end. This will show you how much wall space you need and allow you to look for any obstructions that will prevent the door from opening.

Some items (like furniture or wall mountings) can be relocated while other items (like baseboard heating or radiators) will prevent you from opening the door at all. Additionally, keep an eye out for light switches and electrical outlets – they won’t prevent you from opening the door, but you’ll be blocked from using them when the door is closed.

Create a diagram which shows a door opening, and the adjacent wall space. Show how to measure the necessary wall space. To give perspective., the wall space may include items like wall hangings and electrical outlets which should be labeled, and mention that they need to be moved.

How to determine your barn door width

To determine how wide your door should be, measure

To determine how wide your door should be, measure the opening from one side to the other.

If your door has molding frames, you will need to measure the distance between the outside edges of the molding.

Lastly, you need to add 2″ (two inches) to your width measurement. The extra inches will ensure that you will have privacy and no gaps when closing your sliding barn door. 


Barn door width measurement example

Let's take a look at another example of how to det

Let’s take a look at another example of how to determine the width of your sliding barn door.

In this example, the opening has no molding. The distance between the edges of the door opening is 36,” and we will add 2″ (two inches) to that measurement (one inch for each size): 36″ + 2″ = 38″ 

In this example, the barn door should be 38″ inches wide.


How To Measure For a Sliding Barn Door Track?

installing your door and track

5. Know Your Clearance

Note:Depending on how you plan to install your door (particularly if you’re hanging it by yourself), you may also want to consider measuring the distance between the studs on the wall where you want to hang your door. Some companies will pre-drill your metal railing system to fit these stud measurements to save you a step from having to do it yourself.


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