Closet Door Not Wide Enough – What To Do?

It might seem like you’re squeezing through your closet door every time you gain access to the space. Now you’re wondering how you can widen that fixture. We searched for the solution to that concern for your convenience, and here’s what we found.

Widening a closet doorway typically follows these steps:

  1. Remove the old door casing
  2. Inspect the wall
  3. Widen the doorway
  4. Turn off the utilities
  5. Remove the old door frame
  6. Install the new wall studs
  7. Build the new door frame
  8. Install the new closet door

At first, you might think that this job is fairly straightforward. But you might still be susceptible to making expensive errors if you miss certain details. So continue reading as we talk about these steps in greater detail.

Brand new luxury home and a white wall and a white closet wide open, Closet Door Not Wide Enough - What To Do?

How Do I Make My Closet Door Wider?

Before deciding to widen a closet door, make sure that you have the available space for the remodeled fixture. Keep in mind that widening a closet door if there’s insufficient space might not be possible in certain scenarios. But you can still achieve the results you need with an extensive home renovation plan.

In this section, you’ll learn how to make your closet door wider than before, assuming that you have the space for a bigger opening. Also, ensure that you have the confidence and some degree of DIY expertise to reduce the risks of costly mistakes.

Plus, always practice proper safety protocols before, during, and after this remodeling project. For instance, wear safety goggles to prevent fine particles from irritating your eyes. Don’t forget to measure the dimensions for your new closet door and document your findings.

After taking note of those pieces of information, and you believe that you’re ready for this task, continue this procedure by following these steps:

Storage space for clothes or luggage in the living room or bedroom

What You’ll Need

  • Utility knife
  • Putty knife
  • Drywall saw
  • Mirror
  • Flashlight
  • Rotary cutter
  • Standard handsaw
  • Reciprocating saw
  • Japanese handsaw
  • Lumber
  • Nails
  • Hammer or pneumatic nail gun
  • Power drill
  • Shims
  • Closet door installation kit

Step-by-Step Guide

Step #1: Remove The Old Door Casing

Use the utility knife and slice the seal of the old closet door casing. Take the time in removing the sealant to avoid ruining the paint job of the surrounding wall. Then, take a putty knife to pry the door casing away from the drywall. You may also need a curved pry bar if you need the extra push to remove the casing.

Step #2: Inspect The Wall

Empty house and blank room with a person doing thumbs up

Make an inspection hole by cutting a small section in the wall with a drywall saw. With a mirror and a flashlight, check for signs of electrical and plumbing fixtures in the wall. Mark the areas of these fixtures on the drywall so you’ll know where to pay extra care when you extend the closet door opening.

Step #3: Widen The Doorway

Measure and mark your cutting area on the drywall. Then, remove the inside of the marked region with a rotary cutting tool. Remember to pay attention to the locations of the electrical and plumbing fixtures as you’re removing a section of the drywall.

Step #4: Turn Off The Utilities

Turn off the main electrical and plumbing lines if you need to cut through wires or pipes. Next, use a handsaw to remove sections of the electrical and plumbing fixtures from your new closet doorway design.

Warning: Don’t forget to reroute the cut lines after you finish widening the closet door.

Step #5: Remove The Old Door Frame

Use a reciprocating saw to remove the nails securing the old closet door frame. Pull out the old frame afterward and dispose of it properly. Then, use a Japanese handsaw to cut and remove the baseboard.

Step #6: Install The New Wall Studs

Begin the installation of the new closet doorway by placing new wall studs into the setup. Use appropriately sized pieces of lumber for this step. Next, secure the wall studs with nails. You can use a pneumatic nail gun or a standard hammer to help drive the nails into the studs.

Then, use smaller pieces of timber than the ones you used for the main bodies of the studs to secure the setup in place. Secure the assembly by drilling holes into strategic locations before screwing the pieces.

Step #7: Build The New Door Frame

Cut pieces of drywall to size and secure them into place with screws. Cover the exposed wooden studs with additional lumber that will act as the new closet door frame. Secure this assembly by nailing or screwing the pieces into place.

Step #8: Install The New Closet Door

Check the level of your new closet door frame. If it’s not straight, insert shims into the gap to straighten the assembly. Nail down the shims to secure them. Next, cut off the protruding portions of the shims with the Japanese handsaw.

Install the new casing by nailing it into the desired position. Take note that you may need to cut the new closet door casing to size based on your measurements. Finally, install the new closet door based on the manufacturer’s instructions.

Check out this bi-fold closet door on Amazon.

Watch the video below if you need additional guidance for this closet door-widening job. Although this reasonably short clip shows you how to widen a dining room door, the steps shown should still be fairly similar to broadening a closet doorway:

What Is The Standard Closet Door Size?

Hotel closet with slightly open doorrelated images

Closet doors generally have dimensions of 30 x 96 inches (width x height). However, the typical closet door dimensions usually depend on the type of doorway used. For example, some bi-fold doors come in two- and four-panel options and the latter is typically wider than the former.

You might also be thinking about how tall should closet doors be. If so, read our post on that subject matter to know the answer.

What Can I Use Instead Of A Closet Door?

Home interior showing colonial closet door with purple curtain decor and light blue painted wall

Aside from the typical closet door, you have other options to install in that space. Some candidates you may want to check out are:

Wooden Slat Door

Wood slat doors help create texture in a room. These fixtures also aid in enhancing the privacy of the closet, which can be a good idea for walk-in models.

Pocket Door

If you want to add a touch of elegance to your room, think about replacing your old closet entryway with a pocket door. This fixture often promotes a minimalist approach to improving the room's visual appeal. However, pocket door installation procedures can be quite tricky, which might require you to hire a professional installer for the job.

Check out this sliding pocket door on Amazon.

Don't forget to read our post on should pocket doors be solid or hollow to gain additional insight into this fixture. 


Installing curtains instead of closet doors can be a relatively inexpensive choice for homeowners following strict budgets. Plus, curtains are reasonably easy to install, allowing you to save even more money than you might otherwise spend on professional services.

Check out this doorway curtain on Amazon.

Final Words

Brand new luxury home and a white wall and a white closet wide open

Take note that the first step in widening a closet door is to check if the space can accommodate the broader frame. If so, measure and mark the areas for your new closet doorway. Proceed by following the recommended steps found in this post to help minimize the risks of errors.

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