Revit Families: Creating a simple Wall Opening

From TOI-Pedia
If you need a quick fresh up for the Revit Interface, please refer to Getting started with Revit: Interface.


Families are elements like windows, doors, but also structural beams and many more. In the early design stages it does not make sense to use highly detailed window and door elements. In 1 to 200 drawings, doors and windows are mere openings in a wall.

In this tutorial you'll create a simple Revit Wall Opening Family. The tutorial has two main parts:

  • Creating the base family with few Family Parameters
  • Using the family within Revit

This will be a simplified wall opening, we will add more detail later.

Family Basics

To create a new Family, you can use one of the templates that are shipped with Revit. This makes sure the required references and properties are present in your Family.

  • Click the Application Button, New, Family
  • The 'New Family - Select Template File' Windows opens:
    Revit New Family-Select Template Window.png
  • Find and select the Metric Window.rft file (In C:\Program Data\Autodesk\RVT 2018\Family Templates\English)
  • Click Open.

This template already has some predefined Parameters, or 'Types Properties'. These are used to configure the Family, in this case our Window, so you don't have to create a new Family for different types of the same Window. You can imagine that there's really little difference between a window that's 1000mm in width and one that's 1200mm.

The Metric Window Family Template already has width and height parameters. In the Plan view you can see the dimension line for the width. There's also a dimension with Equality (EQ) enabled that makes sure that no matter which width you choose, the window is always centered.

Revit Metric window-Default plan view.png

And in Elevation (exterior in this case), you can see the Height, as well as the Sill height dimension:

Revit Metric window-Default elevation view.png

  • Save your Family in your Documents folder.

Loading a Family in Revit

To load and place a family in Revit:

  • Go to the Architecture tab and click Window
  • To load your saved family, click Revit Load Family Button.png (Load Family)
  • Browse for your saved family
  • Once your family is loaded, go to the Properties window and click Revit 2011 Edit Type button.png (Edit Type)
  • For each different sized opening, create a Duplicate, give it a sensible name and change the parameters to the desired values
  • You can place your family where you want in your model (to position the family correctly is often easier in a Floor Plan view)
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