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How to Fix Broken Door Hinges

by Paul Sanders

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Things You Need:

  • Screwdriver
  • Penetrating oil
  • Rag
  • Wood glue
  • Cotton swabs
  • Wooden dowels
  • Utility knife

After years of use, the doors in your home will see a lot of wear and tear. Besides the door knob, the hinges see the most problems when it comes to door hardware. The door hinges themselves can become rusted or squeaky. Similarly, the holes holding the mounting screws for the hinges can become stripped causing the hinges to become loose, which in turn will cause the door to hang incorrectly. Below are some simple steps you can take to fix faulty door hardware around your home and keep the doors working properly.

Fixing Door Hinges:

  1. Remove the door and examine the hinges. Have someone hold the door for you while you slip the pins out of each door hinge using the screwdriver. You can pop the hinge pins out by inserting the screwdriver into the hinge barrel from underneath and tapping it with a hammer. Set the door aside and check the screws on each hinge leaf. If any of them are loose, you may need to repair the hole. Remove any hinges that have loose screws.

  2. Fill the stripped holes with dowels. Use a cotton swab to coat the inside of the hole in the door or door frame with wood glue. Insert a wooden dowel smaller than 3/16 of an inch in diameter into the hole and allow the glue to dry. Then use a utility knife to cut off the end of the dowel, so it's flush with the door frame surface.

  3. Drill new holes. Using the hinge leaf as a template, drill new holes for the hinge screws, taking care not to scratch the surface of the door hinges. Then reattach the hinge leaves to the door and door frame.

  4. Oil the hinges. If your door hinges are just squeaky or hard to open, you can loosen them up with a bit of penetrating oil. Before re-hanging the door, coat the hinge pins with a thin layer of the oil. Use a rag to wipe up any drips. The oil will slip between the overlapping sections of the hinge and act as a lubricant.

  5. Re-hang the door. Have someone hold the door while you re-insert the hinge pins. Make sure the pins are completely inserted and that the door opens and closes properly.

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