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5 Common Door Problems (And How to Fix Them)

From historic homes to new builds, old and new doors alike can have issues that cause everyday annoyance. Ahead, we’re running through five of the most common problems, how to repair them, and what you can do to prevent them in the future.

#1: Your Door Won't Stay Shut

A door is pretty pointless if it won’t stay closed. Luckily, this common problem has a pretty easy fix. The first step is to check and see how the door fits in the door frame. Most often, the reason the door won’t stay latched is because of an issue or misalignment with the strike plate mechanism. 

Try to lean in closely to see if the latching portion is hitting the strike plate where it should. If you’re having trouble seeing from this angle, try this hack: Use a brightly colored, easily removable substance (lip liner is perfect!) on the latching piece so that you can see where it hits once you’ve opened the door again. Depending on how it fits, you may need to move the strike plate up or down.

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#2: Your Door Sticks

A sticking door can cause endless irritation, but the remedy is actually easy. Sticking can be caused by something as simple as an old or dirty hinge, so there are a few quick fixes to start with before moving onto more complex solutions. 

To silence the squeaking, try giving the hinge a good cleaning before adding a little bit of lubrication. Rub an inexpensive petroleum jelly into the hinge for a mess-free fix, or use some WD-40. Be sure to remove the pins that allow the door to swing so that the jelly can get down into the holes. If that doesn’t resolve the problem, look at the door jamb and see if you need to add extra space there to prevent sticking.

#3: Your Door Swings Open Too Fast

On the opposite end of the sticky door spectrum, it’s also a problem to have a door that flies open too quickly. Not only is it annoying, but it can be a real hazard that leaves gaping holes in its wake. 

Fortunately, the solution to this problem is as simple as installing a doorstop. There are several styles of doorstop available, ranging from a hinge stop to floor stop. It’s all about finding the one that suits your doorway best.

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#4: Your Door is Drafty

An exterior door’s job is to keep the outside weather… outside. When you find your door allows cold air to seep in during winter and hot air to flow during summer, it’s time to check to see if your weatherstripping is worn out. The purpose of weatherstripping is to block those drafts from creeping inside your home, but it’s less effective after years of wear and tear. 

Installing your own weatherstripping is very doable for the DIY lover! Plus, new weatherstripping not only helps make a house more comfortable, but it will also help you save on your energy bill. However, if your door is old and worn out, or if it poorly fits into the door frame, you would probably be better off investing in a new door altogether.


#5: Your Door is Warped

Exterior doors face a lot of changes in moisture, humidity, and weather. As a result, warping is one of the most common issues — and especially during winter. Warping is essentially a material’s reaction to a change in environmental conditions, and isn’t an indication of faulty manufacturing.

The good news is that once the door has acclimated to its new surroundings, it will most likely correct itself. Simply check to make sure the door unit is not out of plumb with the wall. Otherwise, the best prevention method is to add a decent finish several months before cold weather sets in. If your door is permanently damaged from warping due to moisture, it’s time to replace it. 

If your door’s issues are beyond a reasonable DIY repair, upgrade with a new door from our collection. From front doors to closet doors and everything in between, we have a wide range of stylish, durable options that suit any style. 

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