How to Install a Pet Door Successfully
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How to Install a Pet Door Successfully

How to Install a Pet Door Successfully

Having a pet door installed can give your cats and dogs the freedom to explore your property whenever possible. Although this option tends to work better for rural homes, a properly-protected city lot could also benefit from this installation.

Unless you purchase an item with a pre-built pet entry in it, you’ll need to install this product on your existing door. That means you’ll need some caulk, the pet door, a saw, pliers, and a power drill available to finish this work.

How to Choose the Correct Pet Door
Once you decide to proceed with this project, measure your pet. The door you install must be large enough to accommodate their width and height. The opening size is what matters the most. You’ll want it to be at least two inches larger than the measurements of your largest animal.

Mark the Door Placement
Pet doors come with a template. Have someone hold it to your door where the installation is planned. After you trace it onto the area with a pencil, measure it to ensure the project is centered in the door. You’ll want to mark any screw holes that must get drilled at this time. The inside corners are where you’re going to be cutting out the opening.

Drill Your Holes
Use an electric or cordless drill with a half-inch bit to make holes at the center point of each mark from the template. Use the instructions from the manufacturer to ensure that you complete this step accurately. Drill bits work best for this project, although a screw can get inserted and removed to create the desired outcome.

Prepare the Opening
Cut the opening for your pet door with a hand saw. The best way to do it is to begin in one corner, cutting along the outline you made with the template, until the entire square is out. You may need to sand some rough corners or edges to ensure the product fits. Some products come with break-off levels that you can remove with pliers if your door is too deep.

Place the Frame of the Door
Insert the interior frame of the pet door. This is the one with the flap. Insert the hardware supplies so that it holds firmly against the larger door. From outside of the house, insert the other side into the outer frame, making sure that the product sits flush. Once both sides are attached, you must caulk the installation to seal the inner components from the outer ones. Skipping this step could cause moisture to enter the home.

Finalize the Process
Teach your pet to go through the pet door so that they understand its purpose. If you have a large animal, the scope of this project could be significant. The opening may be big enough for someone to crawl through it to burglarize your property. You may want to choose a product that lets you close and lock this area to prevent trespassers.

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