Kerfed Door Jambs
Traditionally, when interior doors are installed a gap between the door frame and the drywall exists. This gap between the frame and drywall is covered up using casing, which is trim that surrounds the door frame. This casing can be minimal in design such as a Shaker style or can become very elaborate and ornamental depending on the interior design of the home and the homeowner’s personal style.
As an alternative to casing, another finish option we use here at AFT Construction, is caseless or kerfed door jambs. A kerfed door jamb is one where a kerf (slot) is cut into the door jamb for the purpose of allowing a drywall corner bead to be wrapped directly into the jamb. With this wrapping, the drywall connects directly to the door frame and gap between the door frame and drywall goes away. This means the trim casing is no longer necessary. Depending on the style of the home, this corner can either be bullnose (rounded) or a sharp or ‘L’ corner. We typically use this sharp L corner for all of our kerf projects.
Why use a kerfed door jamb? A kerfed door jamb can provide a much cleaner, minimalist look, which is appropriate in modern and contemporary architecture. Kerfed door jambs are also a popular design element for traditional homes found throughout the Southwest. However, the choice may just come down to the homeowner’s personal preference. It is important to keep in mind that the decision to use a kerfed door jamb does require more planning because the jambs need to be installed before the drywall goes in as opposed to after. Additionally, the entire process from framing to drywall needs to be exact since there will not be trim to cover up any inaccuracies.