Screen Door Latch Replacement Screen Door Latch Replacement

If you own a screen door, you may need to repair a broken screen door latch. When the latch breaks, the door is free to slam into your home and into its frame, resulting in damage to both the door and your home as well as excessive noise. When the latch is inoperable it is best to repair or replace the latch as soon as possible. If repair is not an option, you'll need a short checklist in order to replace the latch with another latch that will fit your screen door.

Types of Latches

There are several variations of latches, each requires a different installation method. The simplest is the eye-hook latch which utilizes a hook fastened to either the door or the frame and an eye-hole fastened to the other. Generally, the hook is fastened to the frame because this prevents excess noise and wear due to constant opening of the door.

The push-button latch is another type that uses an external button to operate a small mechanical device, enabling the actual latch to move inside of a strike-plate, preventing the door from opening unless the button is again depressed. This type of latch often comes with a lock that can be turned with a key and will not allow the button to be depressed, unless unlocked.

Less common are the magnetic latches, which do hold the door shut but can easily be pulled open manually or by the addition of some external force. These are not recommended if you are relying on the screen door to act as a barrier for animals or small children.


You will generally need a drill, and a screwdriver for latch replacements. The first step is to take the latch down to a hardware store and find a latch that will suit your door. If you would like to try a different type of latch it is best to talk with a store representative to ensure that the latch will work for the style door that you have.

The easiest latches to replace are the eye-hook latch and the magnetic latch because these require only the loosening and tightening of a few screws to complete. When installing these latches, inspect the previously used screw holes for any damage. If damage is noted, you may need to use the drill to make new guide holes, allowing for proper distance between the hook and the eye-hole, or two magnets.

The push-button latch is a little more difficult to install because it will require you to line up the two halves of the latch, both internal and external and to possibly replace the strike-plate. The screws that hold the two halves together should always be on the inside of the door, for security reasons, and the push-button.

Now that you've installed your new latch, you no longer need to worry about damage to the door or your home, as the latch is functioning properly and you can now take pride in the newly found knowledge and your ability to replace your screen door latch.

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