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Old 12-28-2009, 05:19 PM   #1
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Need assistance with door problem


I have a door going from my basement to garage. I am not sure if was not properly installed or what. Depending upon the time of year, it does not stay closed unless the deadbolt is locked. The doorknob latch does not catch. I tried tweaking where it sits but this only works for a short period of time. Is it possible the hinges need to be adjusted? They are a little different since they have allen screw adjustments on the top and bottom. The door never seems to want to stay in the closed position so I am also unsure if the weather seal is the problem; lockset installation problem; settling; hinges; etc. Any help and insight would be appreciated.

Thanks.

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Old 12-28-2009, 06:18 PM   #2
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Need assistance with door problem


for starters makes sure all the screws in the hinges are tight.

at least 1 screw in each hinge should be about 2" long to go into the framing. If they are just 3/4" screws screwed into the door frame you might be getting some sagging wich would prevent the latch from lining up with the strike plate.

I would start there with the screws.

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Old 12-29-2009, 08:07 AM   #3
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Need assistance with door problem


Seasonal changes in doors is pretty common. Check the alignment of the strike plate. Not just the distance to the door stop , but the vertical alignment. The latchbolt may be hitting the strike plate too high or low. A little change in humidity and the latchbolt may miss the hole.
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Old 12-29-2009, 11:05 PM   #4
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Need assistance with door problem


Quote:
Originally Posted by westendmedia View Post
I have a door going from my basement to garage. I am not sure if was not properly installed or what. Depending upon the time of year, it does not stay closed unless the deadbolt is locked. The doorknob latch does not catch. I tried tweaking where it sits but this only works for a short period of time. Is it possible the hinges need to be adjusted? They are a little different since they have allen screw adjustments on the top and bottom. The door never seems to want to stay in the closed position so I am also unsure if the weather seal is the problem; lockset installation problem; settling; hinges; etc. Any help and insight would be appreciated.

Thanks.
Those are self-closing hinges. They provide spring tension so the door closes by itself when properly adjusted. The door is supposed to close by itself to maintain a fire separation between the house (basement) and garage.
Mike Hawkins
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Old 12-30-2009, 08:22 AM   #5
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Need assistance with door problem


Mike,

Thanks - I was not aware of that. The door does not close as a self closing hinge I imagine would. Do you make the adjustments with the allen screws at top and bottom?

Thanks,

John
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Old 12-30-2009, 06:17 PM   #6
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Need assistance with door problem


I agree it sounds like the frame may be moving a little bit. If it is on a garage and it is cold out you can get different expansions. Be that as it may moving the striker plate a little bit should do the trick. Be careful not to go too much or come summer you'll be going the other direction. You might have to get a wood chisel to clear more material out of the jam so you can move the plate.
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Old 12-30-2009, 07:19 PM   #7
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Need assistance with door problem


John,
That's what the allen screws are for. When you go to make the adjustment, put the allen wrench in and turn it clockwise if I remember correctly. It should click as you turn it. Do the same with both hinges. Tighten up the springs four or five clicks at a time, then check the door. It should swing all the way shut and latch.
To check you latch and striker lineup, take a pencil and close the door just till the striker touches the jamb. Make a mark top and bottom on the jamb where the stiker touches. Now, open the door and see where these marks are in relation to the opening on your strike plate. Use a square if you have to. If it's not off by much, you can take a flat file and file the opening a little at a time till the door latches.
Mike Hawkins

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