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How to Fix Sticking, Rattling Doors and Loose Hinges (page 2 of 2)

Fix common problems with doors that are too tight or too loose, or learn how to switch the side that the door opens on.

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Test Door for Proper Opening and Closing

Too Loose: Tighten Hinge Attachments

If your door's hinges are too loose, use a large wood drill bit to bore out a hole in the door jamb at each existing screw hole (image 1). Apply wood adhesive to the end of a cut section of dowel (image 2). Tap the dowel into the hole (image 3). Continue adding dowels into the holes as required (image 4). Allow the glue to dry. Cut off the exposed dowel ends with a chisel (image 5). Redrill pilot holes for screws into the dowels, and rehang the door (image 6).

Sticking on the Hinges

"Packing out" can help a door to open and close if it is binding on its hinges. It is also a good solution if too much wood has been removed from the frame or door to fit a hinge. Remove the door. Cut out pieces of cardboard to the exact shape of the hinge recess (image 1). Position the cardboard in the hinge recess (image 2). Rehang the door. Test the door, adding more pieces of cardboard if required. Repeat for other hinges on the frame.

How to Switch the Opening

If you are moving the door to the other side of the frame, fill in the old hinge recesses in the frame by cutting a piece of wood with the exact dimensions of the former hinge position. Glue the wood in position, with the patch sitting slightly above the surrounding surface (images 1 and 2). Once dry, plane the patch down to the exact level of the surrounding wood, then fill and decorate as required (image 3).

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