It's not a good sign if one of your doors keeps hitting the doorframe. Whether you are moving into a new place or one of the doors in your home has started sagging over time, you'll want to fix it. Look no further, as we have researched the process for you!
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Before you do anything else, assess the way your door hangs in its frame and identify which aspects of it will you have to take apart or repair. The fix for the door will vary depending on what is causing the problem. The hinges may be loose, or something could be jammed between the gaps.
Whatever the case, you will want to fix your door as soon as you can. In this article, we will go over various situations where your door may be hitting the frame, including:
- Door hitting frame bottom
- Door hitting frame top
- Door hitting frame in the middle
Read on to learn how to fix your door when it keeps hitting the frame.
Before We Dive In
First of all, you have to understand the way a door is installed to know how it should be done properly. If your door keeps hitting the frame, it is installed incorrectly or has shifted into the wrong position. You will need to put your door back in the correct way when you fix it to avoid further issues.
Your door needs to perfectly fit its frame. The frame (sometimes called a chambranle) can be ornamental, but it also covers any gaps between the door and the wall, making your home more secure.
The frame ensures that the door is level. If your door fits its frame perfectly, there will be no gaps, slipping, or hitting the frame. Door jambs are the individual pieces that make up the frame. The frame also supports the hinges, and some doors are first installed on the frame before being attached to the wall with caulk.
Door Hitting Frame Bottom
The bottom of the frame is called the sill. In the case where the door hits the sill, this usually means that the bottom hinges are loose.
Inspect the hinges. You will see that there are two sets of screws in each hinge: one attached to the door, and the other to the frame.
Do not use a drill or electric screwdriver to tighten or replace the screw, as this can cause damage. Use manual a screwdriver.
In some cases, all you have to do is tighten the screw and your door is good to go. If the hole has become too big for the screw, then you need to replace it.
If you need to replace a screw, first take it out of the hole. Next, cut a piece of toothpick and stuff it into the hole before replacing the screw. You can also use a plastic screw anchor instead of a toothpick piece. This should be enough to tighten the door back into the jamb.
If this method does not work, try replacing the screw with a longer screw instead. Get one whose head is the same size so it can fit through the hinge whole.
A replacement screw that measures 2-3 inches should be enough. Even if the hole against the door or frame has loosened, the screw can go further in and create a newer, more secure anchor within the frame.
Door Does Not Fit The Frame
If the issue does not lie in the hinges, then your door does not fit within the frame.
Inspect your door. Is there a gap between the top of the door and the head jamb? There may have been a problem with the installation.
You will want to raise the door by a fraction to even out this space. Doing so entails taking apart the door and its hinges to replace them a little higher up.
How about if your door is too long for the frame, resulting in it snagging against the sill? You can consider shortening the door.
The sill is too important to remove, as it is the door's foundation and provides level and support. You could try to shorten or replace the sill, but you might want to replace your door entirely if it is too big for the frame.
Door Hitting Frame At Top
The top frame is called the head jamb. If your door keeps hitting it, such as if your door is too long, you could shave a little bit off the top to make it fit.
This works if your door is only slightly hitting it. If not, or if the overhang with the top of your door is too long, then perhaps your door was installed too high.
Similar to when your door keeps hitting the sill, you will want to reinstall your door. Move the hinges down a little until it fits the frame. This will only work if there is already a gap at the bottom, to begin with.
Door Hitting The Top Side Jamb
If your door is hitting the side jamb near the top rather than the head jamb, then its top hinges are loose. You can refer to this as a sagging door, where the door's corner hits the side jamb and is unable to close properly.
Check to see which hinges are loose and replace the screws. You can follow the same steps as explained above.
Door Hitting Frame In The Middle
When your door hits the middle of the frame, this can result in a sticky door. Sticky doors are tight against the middle of the frame and are difficult to open.
As with sagging doors, the top hinges are typically the main culprit. Tighten them until they are properly secured. Check if the other hinges need tightening or replacing as well, especially the middle hinges.
Planing and sanding are options to get your door to fit in its frame, but they can be a major hassle. Only resort to this method if tightening the hinges does not work.
How To Fix A Swollen Door
Your door could be hitting the frame because it is swollen. In this case, your door will not fit the frame on all sides because it absorbed too much water.
This happens in humid places or during rainy weather. The moisture in your door should dry out eventually, but it is still a hassle to deal with. Using a dehumidifier indoors can help avoid swelling.
You can also dry the door directly using a hair dryer. Take care though, as the heat could damage the paint. You can point an electric fan at the door to dry it if you are worried about this.
Additionally, you can try using lubricant to get the door to slide back into place despite the swelling.
A well-sealed door should not swell as much. You will want to prime and seal your door to keep it from swelling during rainy and humid days.
How To Replace Your Door
In the extreme case that your door cannot be fixed, you will have to replace it. Plus, depending on whether it is an exterior or interior door, you may have extra parts that you will be dealing with.
Replacing The Door Only
You might be able to replace your door without having to take out or replace the frame. In this case, it is only a matter of making sure the replacement door fits!
If you are using the same door but sanded and planed, be extra careful with the measurements so that it fits the frame this time around. Here are the basic steps to replacing the door:
- Unscrew all the hinges from both the door and frame
- Sand and plane the door, or chisel out spaces for hinges in a new replacement door
- Properly fit and level the door before installing to make sure it fits
- Once you are sure the door fits well, screw it into the frame
Replacing Both Door And Frame
A damaged door frame also needs replacing. If you resort to this, you can take the following basic steps:
- Remove your door
- Remove the door frame
- Make sure your replacement frame and door fit the hole perfectly
- Install the hanging door by sticking it to the wall with caulk.
Wrapping Things Up
A door that keeps hitting the frame is annoying, and the reasons for it range from loose hinges to swelling. But now you know some ways to fix the problem. Having a well-fitted door is important to the safety and beauty of your house, so keep your doors well-maintained.
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