Architraves are pieces of internal dressing timber that run around the doors and/or windows of a building.

Note: architraves are easily confused with skirting boards, which run along the bottoms of the walls; we’ll do a post on them soon!


Architraves are typically constructed with Pine timber or MDF (Medium Density Fibreboard), although other timbers may be used, such as cedar or hardwood; these will be utilised in an effort to match the decor of the rest of the dwelling.


The main purpose of architraves is to cover the gap between the wall sheeting and the door/window frame, providing an aesthetically pleasing finish.

Below are some architrave profile examples:


Architrave Defects

Some of the more common defects we find relating to architraves when carrying out a building and pest inspection include:

  • Missing architraves
  • Incomplete, unfinished or unpainted architraves
  • Decay or moisture damage to architraves, common around bathroom windows and doors.
  • Poor workmanship of mitre joints
Poor workmanship to architrave mitre joint.
Decay to bottom of architrave in bathroom.
Moisture penetration issues in and around architrave