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Do Pull-Up Bars Damage Doors?

author image Melanie Shearer
Melanie Shearer began her writing career in 2010 after serving 15 years in the medical field in positions ranging from medical assistant to laboratory technical manager. She has several degrees and certifications in health care from the American Association of Medical Assistants, the American Society of Clinical Pathologists, Ohio College of Massotherapy, Cooperative Medical Technology Program of Akron and Kent State University.
Do Pull-Up Bars Damage Doors?
Pull-ups can be performed in a home gym. Photo Credit Ibrakovic/iStock/Getty Images

A great way to improve upper body strength is to start a fitness routine that incorporates pull-ups and chin-ups. There are several ways to do these exercises, but many are interested in performing these exercises in their own home gyms. There are a variety of pull-up bars on the market, but the most economical choice is a model that attaches to a doorway. When used and installed correctly, these bars provide a stable area to perform pull-ups effectively.


Doorway models can handle a decent amount of body weight when installed correctly. When used appropriately, these models can withstand several hundred pounds of force. Many models have reinforced hand grips that enhance a user's ability to maintain contact with the bar at all times. The weight limit should be printed on the package insert that comes with the bar.

Depending on the size of the door frame, there may be some issues with stability. Models that are too small for the frame will be very unsturdy and may be dangerous. In order for quality to be at the highest levels, adequate measuring is a necessity.

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Several models provide a number of different features. Some models provide reinforced ends, which are padded with rubber binding. When the ends are reinforced in this way, there is less of a chance that damage will result on the frame or adjoining walls. An additional feature that can add another exercise dimension to a door frame pull-up bar are multiple grip areas and directions. The more options that are made available for varying grips, the more variety can be added to a work-out.

Depending on the attachment mechanism, doorway frames may need to be altered to ensure that the bar is properly installed. Some attachment features require screwing the bar securely into the door frame. When the time comes to remove the bar, the holes will need to be filled for aesthetic purposes.

Cantilever type bars offer an attachment feature that relies only on the top and sides of the door frame to secure the bar. This technique allows the shape and strength of the bar to provide adequate attachment to the door frame. Some rubbing issues may result with this method, so an extra layer of padding is recommended to protect the frame. Tension type bars are also a great feature but may cause issues with scuffing or scratching the frame when tightened.


To get the best measurements possible before purchasing a door frame pull-up bar, take initial measurements from several areas. Record the distance from both sides of the door frame, as well as the distance from the floor to the top of the frame. One last measurement should be taken from the bottom of the upper horizontal section of the door frame to the top of the trim, closest to the ceiling. Take these measurements with you when purchasing a bar.

Read the information printed on the outer packaging for more details on how the bar will be installed. Take into consideration that extra trim attached to the door frame may inhibit an adequate fit for the new bar.


In order to avoid damage to the door frame and surrounding areas, place a towel or rag between the frame and the bar. When performing pull-ups, typically there will be a lot of jarring of the bar, which could damage areas where the bar may rub.

Follow the installation instructions exactly to avoid any unnecessary damages. If the bar does not seem to fit correctly and the directions were followed exactly, consider purchasing an alternate model. If you have to add pieces to make the bar function, it probably is not the correct type of bar for the door frame.

Preventing Injury

Avoiding damage to walls and door frames will be aided by following the manufacturer's recommendations for use. Follow the advice and heed warnings on weight limits and safety measures. The greatest chance of injury and damage to your home comes from improper use of the equipment, so follow instructions carefully.

If you have questions concerning exercise or equipment instillation, contact the customer service numbers provided on the instruction sheet.

Always consult a physician before beginning any exercise program.

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