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How to Fix a Stuck Door Knob?

Pulished on Nov. 07, 2022

Door handle locks are critical to the design and security of your home. So when they break, they can pose a security risk and other such problems. Factors such as temperature, humidity, wear and tear, and damaged locks or latches can cause door handles to jam or break. In the case of a damaged door handle, you will need to replace it as soon as possible.


Before determining if the door handle needs to be replaced, follow these steps

Step 1: Give It a Shake.

Sometimes, gently shaking the doorknob can loosen the stuck area, mainly if it is a simple issue with a small part. However, be careful not to push too hard or move the handle too hard, as this may break the door handle more.

Step 2: Try Using a Lubricant.

Spray a lubricant, such as WD-40 or similar dry lubricant, on the top of the mechanism. Turn the handle to lower it into the assembly.

You will need to look carefully at the sides of the mechanism for any signs of rust as this may be the problem. If there are signs of rust, use a wire brush to remove it and then spray it with lubricant to help it work properly.

If the problem persists, any other small parts inside the door handle could be the source of the problem.

Step 3: Check the Latch.

If the above steps do not work for you, the cylindrical latch needs to be inspected as it may need repair.

Turning the handle retracts the latch back into the door by rotating the through shaft. When the handle retracts the latch to the rear of the latch body and the handle will not turn, it is possible for the latch to get stuck on something.

A stuck latch may benefit from some lubrication, or it may be stuck on the impact plate located on the door frame.

Before you begin to fix the problem, test the latch to determine if the latch is sticking in the door or not properly installed on the strike plate. To test your latch, follow these steps.

Turn the door handle to push the door open

Slowly loosen the knob

Loosen the knob and hold the latch tongue with your fingers

Gently pull the latch tongue

If the latch bolt does not move when fully extended, the problem is the strike plate

If the latch bolt moves, the latch is stuck in the door

To try to fix a latch stuck in the door, use a flathead screwdriver or Philips screwdriver to loosen the latch.

Open the door and hold it in the open position with the door wedge.

Next, place the screwdriver on top of the latch, then tap the latch with a hammer and gently remove any obstructions. Repeat this process on the bottom of the latch.

At this point, you may want to check that the strike plate located on the door frame is not aligned, as this may prevent your door from closing properly.

Test your cylindrical latch and turn the door handle to begin retracting the latch. Once you turn the doorknob, the latch will slide into the interior of the door. 

Step 4: Remove the Doorknob.

If none of the above steps work for you, you may need to completely disassemble the door handle to find the problem.

Remove the screws from the door handle and set them aside.

Pull the door handle off of the spindle in a sliding motion and disassemble it.

Make sure to retain all fixtures, such as screws and spindles.

Look at the door handle. Any abnormality may cause a malfunction, such as an interruption or blockage.

Use narrow pliers such as sharp-nosed pliers to remove any obstructions.

If your door handle has a spring mechanism, check for loose springs.

Place the doorknob back on the door and put any loose screws back into the appropriate holes.

Tighten the screws.

Then, try to operate it to check if it is working properly.

If this does not work or you are unable to repair the door handle, the handle will need to be replaced.

If you need any help finding the right doorknob or have any questions, don't worry, our team is here to help. Contact us anytime.

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