Lock stuck - latch won't retract

Closed Thread

  #1  
Old 04-13-06, 11:25 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 3
Lock stuck - latch won't retract

The lock on one of the outside doors is stuck shut. The knob turns from both inside and outside but the latch won't retract. The lock is a Schlage keyed knob (with deadlatch) and about five year old.

I have removed the knobs and am able to move the locking mechanism that should retract the latch but the latch wont budge. For the last few days I had noticed that the spring mechanism in the latch wasn't working too smoothly - I had to turn the knob to shut the door rather than just being able to push the door shut.

What can I do to pull the latch out of the latch hole and strikeplate?

Thanks for your help.
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 04-14-06, 03:45 AM
cuedude's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Key West, Fl.
Posts: 348
Originally Posted by alecu
The lock on one of the outside doors is stuck shut. The knob turns from both inside and outside but the latch won't retract. The lock is a Schlage keyed knob (with deadlatch) and about five year old.

I have removed the knobs and am able to move the locking mechanism that should retract the latch but the latch wont budge. For the last few days I had noticed that the spring mechanism in the latch wasn't working too smoothly - I had to turn the knob to shut the door rather than just being able to push the door shut.

What can I do to pull the latch out of the latch hole and strikeplate?

Thanks for your help.
Hello alecu,

This sounds like it could be a couple things. First, try pushing the door closed as you turn the handle. The latch may have dropped into the strike hole completely, binding the latch. Or you may try lifting the door as you try and open it. Friction is the one thing that most often happens causing a latch not to retract.

Another possibility is that the latch may have become detached from the knobset. IF this is the case, you will have to remove the lock from the door, and from there you can open the door with a flatblade screwdriver. I recommend replacing the latch as well.

Hope this gives you some ideas. Let us know how it works?

cuedude
 
  #3  
Old 04-14-06, 02:30 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 3
Still no luck

Cuedude,

Thanks for the ideas:

- I tried putting the knob back on and pushing/pulling/lifting the door while turning the knob, but the latch still won't retract.

- I didn't understand the part about opening the door with a flatblade screwdriver. Does this mean remove the trim piece and insert a putty knife/screwdriver between the door and frame and try to push the latch back? This lock has a deadlatch - is this method likely to work (I have read that the deadlatch is meant to prevent "credit-card" entry).

Other ideas are appreciated too.
 
  #4  
Old 04-14-06, 05:16 PM
cuedude's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Key West, Fl.
Posts: 348
I didn't understand the part about opening the door with a flatblade screwdriver

What I meant to say is if you remove the lock from the inside of the door, using a flatblade screwdriver you can pull the little 'T' that sticks out from the latch on the inside of the hole. This pulls the latch back away from the strike, allowing you to open the door.

There are different configurations of latches, and how they are activated however. You could run into a long latch the lock runs through. You can use a large flatblade to activate that. If you have the type with the half moon, use the outside of the lockbody, stick it into the half moon, and turn the whole thing to retract the latch.

Let me know if you have any more trouble. I'll do my best to get that thing open for you.

cuedude
 
  #5  
Old 04-15-06, 05:57 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 3
Thanks

Thanks for the ideas - much as I tried, I couldn't get it to open. Had to call a locksmith. The locksmith was able to work the latch out using a couple of thin tools (and friction) in the gap between the door and the frame.

The latch was broken - the spings inside were wedged sideways. Appears to be a mechanical failure of the lock - a Schlage with a lifetime warranty!
 
  #6  
Old 04-16-06, 05:40 AM
cuedude's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Key West, Fl.
Posts: 348
Hi alecu,

Sorry about that. A broken latch is something I didn't figure on. I thought it was OK. I'm glad the lock is out now, and the door is open. I'm also wondering why the lock wasn't removed from the door before the broken latch was found. It's much easier to work through the 2 1/8th inch hole than through the 1/8 inch space betwen the door and the frame. Glad it's open though.

cuedude
 
  #7  
Old 09-18-06, 11:23 AM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 2
Lock stuck - latch won't retract

I had the same problem with a Kwikset doorknob. Various tools inserted in the crack of the door would not move the latch. The door could not be taken off of the hinges. My solution was to cut through the door latch with a hacksaw blade inserted in the crack of the door from inside the house. It took patience and about 45 minutes.
 
  #8  
Old 07-11-07, 11:29 AM
Member
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 3
Same Latch Retraction Issue

So I have the same issue desribed in the previous posts in which my door latch wont retract. I am willing to call a locksmith, but I want to give it the old college try first.

First I too tried pushing/lifting/twisting/etc the door to open the latch, but nothing budged. Next I removed the knobs and tried to manually force the latch back. I think I am working on the appropriate piece, but I'm open to suggestions. The knob has a long cylindrical metal tube that is half surrounded by a second tube. Both tubes (the full cylinder and the half cyclinder surrounding it) twit when I twist the knob. It seems the outter, half tube is supposed to catch a metal piece (part of the door innards) pulling that piece back causing the latch to retract. If I have this right, I should be able to manually force that metal piece. Muscles dont fail me know! It seems I am not strong enough to do this forcefully, so I sprayed WD40 on everything but still cant budge that metal piece.

I tried sticking a knife between the door and the jam but I have the same problem. I'm not stong enough to force the latch back using a knife. I dont have a hacksaw blade to cut through the latch (as texascharles describes). Does anyone have additional suggestions for me?
 
  #9  
Old 07-11-07, 07:11 PM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 674
Welcome to the forums, TiffanyK!

Cutting the latch or brute force are probably your best options at this point. I have torn stuck latches apart a couple of times using a screw driver and vise grips. The strength/quality of the latch will contribute to how hard this is.

Hacksaw blades are cheap and you can get a small holder for the blade or wrap tape around one end if you want to try and cut it.
 
  #10  
Old 07-11-07, 08:53 PM
Member
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 3
Thank you Mr. Moderator! Before I try cutting with a hacksaw, I want to make sure I understand what I should be accomplishing. Should I be positioning the blade between the door and the jam and cutting through the latch? Once I do that I should be able to open the door but will I be able to get the latch out of the jam? I fear I may be left with a small piece of the latch still stuck in the jam and no leverage to pull/dig it out. Are you expecting the latch will simply fall out of jam when I open the door? Please advise...
 
  #11  
Old 07-11-07, 09:51 PM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
Here is a suggestion that most locksmiths will not advise as it is possible to cause damage to the jamb.

I have used this method successfully a few times, but you need to be careful.
It's hard to describe...but I'll try.

1. Get a piece of 4x2
2. Take your car tire jack and place the base of the jack against the hinge side of the jamb.
3. wind the jack open and place the 4x2 long ways into the jack head (the part that lifts the car) so that the end of the 4x2 presses on the opposing jamb.
4. Continue to wind the jack open. This will put pressure on the jambs causing them to bend slightly and increase the gap between the jamb and the door frame.
5.When the jamb opens enough, try pushing the latch back with a screwdriver or steel rule or chisel.

Door should open easily.
 
  #12  
Old 07-12-07, 05:16 AM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 674
For cutting, yes between the door and the jamb. The trouble with this, unless you can remove the stop is limited space preventing a long stroke with the hacksaw.

GlobalLocky makes a good point-what kind of gap do you have between the door and frame? If it is fairly large, you may not even need heavy equipment just pry bar or large screw driver to spread it a bit. This can leave at least surface wood damage though.
 
  #13  
Old 07-12-07, 01:52 PM
Member
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 3
Thumbs up

There was a bit of room between the door and the jam (maybe an 1/8") so I could really stick a knife or flat head screw driver in there to push back the latch. The only problem is the space between the door and the jam was not on the side of the latch that is angled. So it was a bit awkward to work from the "wrong" side. In any case, I still couldnt push the latch back manually.

I also tried taking the pins out of the hinges to swing the door open from the hinge side (hoping the latch was not strong enough to resist the force from the door). I couldnt get the pins out of the hinges so I picked up a $5 hacksaw and spent 30 minutes sawing throught the latch. Afterwards, it was fairly easy to pick the broken pieces of the latch from the jam...sorta like playing that game Operation

Now my door swings right open with the slightest breeze! Thanks everyone for your suggestions!

Oh and it turns out the piece of the metal I worked on after removing the knobs (hoping it would push the latch back) was the wrong part. Now that the door is open, I can push the remaining piece of latch back with my fingertip, but I cannot see the part in the lock I should have been working on. It is hidden within the lock innards.

So I couldnt have dont it without your suggestions. Thank you very much! Score one for the do-it-yourself-ers!
 
  #14  
Old 12-25-08, 10:39 AM
Member
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 2
Same problem here with a Schlage lock.

Door knob turns both ways, but bolt won't retract.

I was able to remove the lock from both sides of the door.

Rotating the innards of the lock with a screwdriver does not move the bolt - clockwise or counter clockwise

If I jiggle the door, I am able to move the bolt using a putty knife and thought I could use 2 putty knifes to move, hold in place, move a bit more, hold in place etc... but the bolt moves only so far and then I cannot get it any further... not enough to open the door.

As soon I as release the putty knifes, the bolt springs back to its full extended position... so some kind of spring action is working.

I just cannot see where the movement of the bolt is being limited.

Any ideas are really appreciated.
 
  #15  
Old 12-25-08, 02:54 PM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 674
Good idea with the putty knives.

Can you remove the hinge pins and remove the door?

If not twist the latch to pieces with vise grips or pliers as mentioned above. Once enough pieces are removed you should be able to pull it back.

I think the other posts covered about all available options.
 
  #16  
Old 12-30-08, 01:58 PM
Member
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 2
Yes, the putty knifes worked very well in tandem... one to move the bolt, the other to hold it while I repositioned for the next push.

However, I couldn't get it to go far enough to open. Tried removing the pins on the hinges, but after having someone use a rubber mallet against a 2x4 on the other side of the door, it was clear the door was not going to clear the hinges.

Ended up calling a locksmith who used my putty knifes a a "tool" I created to move the bolt as far as I did... he then used a small crowbar to spread the door and door jamb apart just a wee bit more which gave it the clearance it needed to swing open.

He then removed the latch and replaced it with a new one (~$20) and we kept the existing knobs, face plates, lock and keys. Labor and service call was an additional $150.

I guess it worked out OK, because I probably would have gone out and bought (in my ignorance) an entire new lock and end up having to rekey everything.

Thanks for your reply.
 
  #17  
Old 10-03-10, 06:16 AM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 1
Question Lock stuck - latch won't retract

I have the same problem. But my door is open. I can remove the inside knob but I could not remove the outside knob. The latch is at its fully extended length and is stucked (cannot push it in). I don't quite understand the solutions described above. Is there a way to allow me to remove the outside knob so that I can pull out the latch?
 
  #18  
Old 10-03-10, 06:11 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,169
If you can shoot us a photo, we'll know what to do. The brand name (located on the plate where the latch comes out of) would also be helpful. If you have the popular Kwikset knob lock, the outside knob must be turned a bit in order to remove it from the latch assembly. On Grade 2 locksets of almost any brand, you may need to loosen the latch screws, as the latch can sometimes bind on the retractor body.
 
  #19  
Old 10-04-10, 09:09 AM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
depending on the lock brand, I suggest that the deadlatching mechanism is either frozen or broken, preventing the latch from moving.

Kwikset is one of the few that requires you to turn the exterior handle slightly to disengage the tiebolt backset (latch)
 
  #20  
Old 01-18-13, 05:35 PM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 1
Schlage Deadlatch Won't Retract

Just wanted to say thanks to those who contributed to this thread. On one of my doors to the outside, I suddenly wasn't able to turn the knob even though the knob was unlocked. It is made by Schlage. I took the inner and outer knobs off the lockset to expose the deadlatch. No about of fiddling, prying, lifting or pushing would make the deadlatch retract. I tried taking the door off, but even with the hinge pins out, the door wouldn't come off its hinges. This thread introduced me to the idea of using an open-ended hack saw. It took me about 15 mins to saw through the part of deadlatch that was exposed between the door and the jamb. I was able to get the door open and could then remove the rest of the deadlatch which I take to Home Depot and, hopefully, get a replacement under warranty. Thanks to this thread I didn't have to call a locksmith!
 
  #21  
Old 01-24-13, 05:19 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,169
For those perusing this thread, one must not assume that by simply removing the hinge pins the door will fall right out of the frame, as Paul discovered. Unless you're willing to do a bunch of prying & messing up the finish, you must have at least 3/16" (or preferably 1/4") clearance between the door's edge & the frame (on the latch side) so that, once the pins are removed, you can scoot the door over in order to clear the hinge knuckles on the frame as you rotate the door away from the frame.
 
  #22  
Old 01-25-13, 11:06 AM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
Actually the standard gap between the edge of the door and the jamb/frame (when door is closed) is 1/8". years ago, builders used match sticks to hold the separation between door and frame to maintain the gap when installing the door.

So prying a door out is quite difficult actually
 
  #23  
Old 01-27-13, 04:27 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,169
yeah, and even when you do have more than the ideal 1/8" gap, many older homes have the sheet metal (copper?) weatherstripping, which will greatly resist compression, in an effort to clear the knuckles.
 
  #24  
Old 01-28-13, 09:38 AM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
especially when they are fitted backwards lol
 
  #25  
Old 02-09-13, 11:31 AM
Member
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 1
Glad I found this forum! We are doing a bunch of stuff with our house and we've never been 'fixer uppers" - but the recent economy and a couple of job losses has us decided to do ourselves when we can rather than pay someone.

Same issue on a back door here. Door is closed, not sure of the brand but there is a square shaped "hole" that the knob shaft went through to turn the latch. Took off the handles, and the latch will not pull back out of the hole in the frame. The little secondary latch - the one that, when retracted will not allow the main latch to retract - is the only thing that will move when I turn the square hole. But even that little latch seems to be loose. Also, and this may be the problem, it doesn't appear to extend all of the way out. The main latch appears to be moving in a rotational mode (as opposed to back and forth) - I am thinking the whole thing is just shot.

Hinge approach didn't work. Before I get a hacksaw and try that, is there anything that will work if the "safety" latch won't extend all the way out (and thus keeping the main latch in a locked mode, i.e. credit card prying protection mode?)

Thanks!

S
 
  #26  
Old 02-09-13, 06:36 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,169
The "little secondary latch" or "deadlocking pin" is only marginally effective in cheap Grade 2 & 3 locksets of the types typically used in residential construction.
The door does not usually have to be spread from the frame as far as you might think. Once the pin is allowed to extend to about 2/3 it's travel, it will no longer block the main latch from being pushed in. (In many cases, these pins don't work at all). So with typical pre-existing gaps, you may need to spread the door only 1/4" to slip the latch.

The trick is to do it without scarring the finish/paint. Global's idea, given earlier in this thread, to use a car jack may seem extreme, but it allows you to spread the pressure over a large surface area. Similarly, the use of very wide chisels and shims near the latch can work, just realize that the bigger the footprint, the less damage you'll do.
 
  #27  
Old 08-27-13, 12:00 PM
Member
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 1
This Thread Helped!

I was having the same problem as most folks here and one of the ideas worked for me without having to call a locksmith.

Same problem, turn the knob and the latch would not retract - tried springing the door this way and that, tried credit card method, took the doorknobs off and messing with the mechanism - all the other ways mentioned.

Someone suggested taking the pins out of the door hinges and opening it that way - and that worked for me. (Now why didn't I think of that?!).

Thanks to whoever mentioned they tried that - I'm too lazy to go back now and see who it was. It certainly was a lot easier than trying to saw through the latch!

The bottom hinge pin was stuck and rusted - I used an old messed up Phillips head screwdriver that I never threw away and a hammer to punch up from the bottom to get it out. Had to pound around on the sides to help loosen it up but finally got it out and was able with little force to get the hinges separated and get the door open from the other side.

Bill
 
  #28  
Old 09-11-13, 03:37 AM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: uganda
Posts: 9
hi guys, sorry to revive an old post but I have a similar problem.
Tried to exit the house today and front door which is WOODEN was stuck.
I have one of these locks (see image):

The actual lock cylinder works fine. However, the 2 top metal bits that you see got stuck (even though they do work, they don't retract far enough to unlatch from the strike plate.

I managed to open the door from the inside by pushing the middle metal bit with a thin knife, had I been outside though, I wouldn't be able to go in!

I've been using this lock for like 6 years with no problem, I don't know how it suddenly won't retract fully.

I tried lubing the parts, I also tried eating away some of the metal on the strike plate edges with a rotary tool, no difference.

What did work is that I loosened the screws that hold the locking mechanism to the door half a turn each. That did the trick but it still half/stucks even though it does open now.

I think the door expanded for some reason, maybe humidity, or temp changes or something, I don't know.
I've had other problems before with the wood of the door changing size, the 2 door sides (it's a double door) rubbing/meeting together when closing the door for example. I solved that one by shaving a bit of wood on the door edges and it worked.
 
Attached Images  
  #29  
Old 09-11-13, 11:17 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: uganda
Posts: 9
so, the top latch still sort of gets stuck but the door opens if u wiggle it a bit.

Anyone thinks I should shave off some more wood on the strike plate side?
Or maybe then the door will go back to how it was and won't close properly?
any input is welcome
 
  #30  
Old 09-12-13, 06:11 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,169
While I'm not familiar with this Euro-style lock, you did say you had to push in the "middle metal bit" to allow the door to open. This small spring-loaded pin in any mortise lock I'm familiar with, is the "deadlocking pin" which, when depressed as the door is closed, locks the "spring latch" (above it) in the projected (locked) position. The deadlocking pin is not designed to project into the strike plate, and if, due to mis-alignment, it does, may not ramp out on it's own, as you try to open the door. On many of these designs, turning the knob/lever/key to retract the spring latch, does NOT retract the deadlocking pin as well.

I could be wrong in this particular instance, if your lock is exactly like the photo; Ordinarily, there is a large square hole opposite the spring latch, in which the knob/lever spindle passes, & I don't see that here.
 
  #31  
Old 09-12-13, 11:05 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: uganda
Posts: 9
"The deadlocking pin is not designed to project into the strike plate".
This is true and it does not, there is no hole for the middle latch to go in.

However, when the top latch got stuck, the only way to push it back, was to push back the middle/deadlocking latch (pushing it back on our locks actually pushes back the top part, rather than locking it) from he inside of the house. However, when turning the key or pressing the button to unlock the top latch, the middle latch doesn't seem to move at all, I don't know if this was the case always, but the top latch does disengage (but lately not enough far back to unlock?) - Yesterday, I used my rotary tool and a grinding stone attachment to make the top latch a bit smaller. This worked, but now I have to give the door a little extra push every time I close it to make sure the top latch locks into place.

What's strange about all of this is that the entire lock mechanism seems to work properly.

I think the door has changed shape, in fact I'm pretty sure it changes shape at least a few times a day since in the early morning it sort of gets stuck more than later in the day. Where I live is quite humid on some nights and the day/night temp difference is over 15c.

Is there any way to make the door more resistant to temp changes and humidity levels? The door is almost 7 years old and I've done the outer part (without removing the door) twice with oil based varnish and once with water based varnish already (every 2 years).

One thing's for sure, I'm never ever buying a wooden door as a front door again!

Thanks
 
  #32  
Old 09-15-13, 06:10 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,169
So what you're saying is that, with the door closed, the deadlocking pin is pushed & held in by the middle part of the strike plate, but by pushing it FURTHER in with a knife, it then pulls the main latch (above) in as well, sufficiently to open the door? Strange....All I can say is that when you "push the button" or turn the knob, lever, or whatever is designed to withdraw the main latch, it should withdraw until it is flush with the faceplate so the door can be opened, even if there's virtually no clearance between the door & frame/strikeplate. If the latch won't go all the way in because it is binding on the strike plate, the plate needs to be adjusted/re-installed to give some play or tolerance.

As for the wood door, in my extreme climate changes, the only answer to protect my wood door from the elements was to install a storm door in front of it....made all the difference in the world.
 
  #33  
Old 09-16-13, 02:31 PM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
Being that you appear to be a non-US member, I would presume that your lock may be a CISA brand electrified atrium style lock. The middle pin in an activator that is designed specifically, so that when power is applied through the solenoid, the bolt retracts. It does not act like a deadlatching pin (preventing the latch from slipping back). If the electrics have been removed or disconnected, this pin, still requires to be depressed when the door is closed to allow the main latch to retract easily.

These locks are activated inside by a flat button inside (about the size of an enlarged quarter - or 20 cent piece from Australia). When the button is depressed, the solenoid acts like a magnet, lifting a tab and pulling the latch back very quickly.

It was quite commonly used on apartment complex communal entry doors.

There is nothing wrong with a wooden door and frame usually. The issues that arise are quite often the result of poor workmanship when installing.

Are there glass side panels next to the door on both hinge and strike sides? Often the issues can be fixed by a knowledgeable locksmith, expertly and quickly. Weathering is a common phenomenon that is very difficult to prevent but suffice to say, that installing longer screws in the hinges, often repairs and prevents the door from dropping. If the jamb is moving, as a result of weathering, sometimes using long screws in the jamb too can prevent the weathering effect.

I have repaired a significant number of CISA locks in Australia and also in Italy. They are very good quality, albeit a little dear.
 
  #34  
Old 10-03-13, 06:28 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,169
To Global:
Presumably by now OP has solved his problem. I am curious about the image he provided, (which does not appear to be electric) but is obviously Euro-style.
It looks very similar to the imported profile-cylinder locks used on many new storm doors in the USA...except that this lock does not have the typical square spindle & hub arrangement to operate the spring-latch; And, there appear to be 4 thru-bolting holes adjacent the profile-cylinder hole. Since the trim is not shown, I am left to wonder how this works. Perhaps the inner knob fits into the profile cylinder hole, whereby a full turn retracts the bolt, and a further 1/2 turn retracts the latch?? What would the outside trim consist of??
 
  #35  
Old 10-03-13, 11:09 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: uganda
Posts: 9
GlobalLocky yes this is how the lock works you are spot on.
No electrics or anything has been removed, I can still open the door with the door-phone button. The lock and cylinder work 100%.
No glass panels either.

The problem was due to weathering issues and as before with other problems on this door (double doors rubbing between them when opening/closing) has been resolved on it's own totally now (and after my diy solution I described before as well).

I don't know what exactly is going on, but I suspect that either the wood of the door (which is very very hard wood) or the wood of the frame is affected by heat or moisture changes and there really is nothing I can do.
 
  #36  
Old 10-06-13, 12:25 PM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
@Brainii: The lock you pictured above displays a rebated strike plate. Are your double doors rebated? (a step on the edge of each door that creates a seal when the doors are closed)

When looking at the outside of the doors (when closed), is the gap at the top of the doors (both sides) wider near the middle (latch side) than the edge of the doors closer to the hinges?

I would suggest embedding the top hinges slightly deeper into the jamb and at the same time shim the bottom hinges. This will likely make the doors sit straight. If you use long screws to attach the hinges to the studs as suggested previously, the doors will not move in future (unless there's an earthquake...lol) due to the weathering effect.

You could also take a slight bit off the door edge with a plain too. using the tips already provided, it is likely that the issue will be resolved, at least for a few years.

I have used this method for many doors around the world with rarely any difficulty and the doors continue to work perfectly for many ensuing years.

i was recently abroad and was hunted down by an old client from 20 years previously that had me repair a similar issue many years ago, to do more work for her. I asked if there were any issues with the door repaired, to which she responded, "in all our years of having repair people come to our home to repair stuff, your repair is the only one that never required any call back, hence why we are calling you to get more work done"..... I told them I should have probably charged more....and we both laughed.

It's not a perfect solution, but is a solution that works easily and costs bubkes.

Let me know how you fare.


@rstripe: The CISA lock is a rudimentarily designed electronic lock, designed for communal apartment entry's. The cylinder used is often a double cylinder lock (as opposed to a thumbturn inside). The round depress button inside, flicks a tail that lifts the solenoid inside the lock that retracts the latch. (the latch is under pressure when the smaller activating latch on the edge is retracted). there is no need for a handle inside. Often you see a dummy knod or lever or D pull outside. Most doors are open out. Many of these locks are specifically designed to operate with intercom systems. they were preferred to electric strikes in those days.
 
  #37  
Old 10-06-13, 11:06 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: uganda
Posts: 9
Well, the problem is not fixed, this morning the door was stuck again due to a drop of 15 degrees celcius overnight.

I looked at the doors and the gap at the top and bottom of the doors (both sides) is indeed wider than the gap near the middle (latch side) which is narrower.

BEfore I try the proposed solution: "embedding the top hinges slightly deeper into the jamb and at the same time shim the bottom hinges. This will likely make the doors sit straight. If you use long screws to attach the hinges to the studs as suggested previously, the doors will not move in future (unless there's an earthquake...lol) due to the weathering effect. You could also take a slight bit off the door edge with a plain too. using the tips already provided, it is likely that the issue will be resolved, at least for a few years."

wouldn't it be wiser to repaint the outside of the doors and door frames, with some kind of permanent sealant to prevent them from changing size in the future?

The door is after all fine, when the weather is warm..


Although I'd hate that, I think I might have to call an expert woodworker in the end?
 
  #38  
Old 10-08-13, 06:40 AM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: uganda
Posts: 9
well I removed the metal bit of the strike plate and dremeled some of the wood underneath. Re-attached everything and now problem solved (for now at least).
If the door expands more (which I doubt) I'll have to repeat the process.
And if in the summer it contracts so much that it won't close properly, I'll have to lock it every time I exit or enter the house, I can live with that, it's better and much cheaper than installing new doors.

In the summer I'll also try to repaint with a different/better sealant (this time I''do proper sanding first to remove the old varnish layers) and also do the top part of the doors too).
 
  #39  
Old 10-09-13, 10:07 AM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
Many external doors in the USA are built today with steel plate inside and outside. The inner core may still be a wooden frame or fire protection fill. Steel external doors (or steel plated) are less likely to swell or contract due to climate changes.

Anything made from wood (a natural substance) is prone to weather affected changes. You can slow down natural growth or changes using ointments, but not necessarily for the long term.

Metal constructions cannot change/warp etc, because they are unnatural man made products.

Wood is often used because it is significantly cheaper than prefabricated materials.

This is often why fire doors are usually steel construction with fire protection properties built in. So that in case of extreme heat, the doors usually dont bend out of shape.
 
  #40  
Old 10-09-13, 10:16 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: uganda
Posts: 9
Yes I know. I was going to put a steel/upvc door, as they claim to last forever and certainly won't warp/change shape but unfortunatelly they were twice as expensive. Not that our wooden doors were cheap, 2000 USD they cost us..
But wood does look much better in my opinion.
Also in my parents house, we had a wooden door for more than 20 years with no warping or anything.
However that house had a longer covered porch.
Oh well, maybe next time!
 
Closed Thread

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
'