how to fix a door that won't close

It can be super annoying (and a bit terrifying if you can't watch horror movies) when you close a door and it opens right back up again. The good news for you is that fixing a door that won't close is super easy, and it won't take much of your time. All you need is to inspect the door to pinpoint the offending areas and a few simple tools. So, let's get started.

First, Pinpoint the Troublemaking Area

DIY projects are fun, but you need to have some plan ahead of you. Instead of fixing the issue straight away, start by locating the part that is causing the problem. Although most troublemaking parts are quite obvious to detect, chalk/lipstick would be enough if you are having difficulty in finding it. Rub chalk on the outer door edges and close & open the door a few times. You’ll know where the chalk has rubbed onto the door’s frame.

Step-By-Step Solution If The Door Won’t Close

  • Step 1: In most cases, hinges are the main culprits behind doors failing to close properly. You’ll need a screwdriver to tighten the hinges of your interior door.
  • Step 2: Close the door to look for the gap between the frame and door along with the door latch. If you notice any inconsistent gap, you can wider the gap by removing the screws in the hinge closet.
  • Step 3: A too-deep mortise is one of the main reasons that causes the frame out of alignment. You can decrease the space by fitting heavy paper or index card between the surface and hinge.
  • Step 4: Close the door to notice if the latch is hitting the strike plate too high or too low. If you notice any misalignment, use a file (tool) to file down the hole in the strike plate. It helps expand the hole and fix the misalignment issue.
  • Step 5: In case there is a significant misalignment, you'll need a chisel to widen the shallow groove. Once you do it, reattach the strike place and viola.

Other Practical Tips for You

  • Frequently spray the hinges with an oil-based lubricant
  • Avoid latch problems by lubricating the latch every six months
  • If there is a buildup of old paint around the door latch, it can cause difficulty in closing the door. Break the seal around the latch by using a utility knife and scrape the paint off
  • Install a 7.5-centimeter screw after removing one of the screws in the jamb side of the hinge. Use this screw in the top hinge if you want to raise the latch. In case you want to lower the latch, simply install this screw in the bottom hinge

The Bottom Line Having a stuck door at some point is a normal thing and you shouldn't let it drive you crazy. Just a few adjustments, a little tightening, and patience are required to fix the problem. If your interior door's condition is deteriorating, consider buying a new quality interior door at an affordable price. Check out our collection interior doors and let us know if you need any guidance in choosing the right door.