How to Change a Doorknob

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You can easily change a doorknob on your own. (Photo: @kayp via Twenty20)
Cheryl Knight · Writer · Dec 10, 2020
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    Every home has multiple doorknobs installed. And while doorknobs typically last a long time, you may occasionally need to switch one out. The good news is that you can do this yourself instead of hiring a professional. Here’s what you need to know to change a doorknob in your home.

    Removing the Old Doorknob

    Materials Needed
    Before you install a new doorknob, you need to remove the one:
    Step 1: Remove the screws on the interior knob. Using a Phillips head screwdriver, turn the screws counterclockwise to loosen them.
    Step 2: Remove the interior knob. Hold the door and pull the knob away from it. Wriggle the knob back and forth to remove it, if necessary.
    Step 3: Remove the faceplate. Using a flathead screwdriver, pry the knob faceplate away from the door carefully.
    This should reveal a second set of screws. Remove these screws to release the exterior knob from the door.
    Step 4: Unscrew the latch. Next, remove the screws holding the latch plate in place.
    Using a Phillips head screwdriver, remove both the bottom and top screws from the plate by turning them counterclockwise. Then remove the plate.
    Step 5: Remove the latch. Once you remove the plate, pull the latch free from the door. The easiest way to do this is to pull it straight out of the hole in which the latch rests.

    Removing a Doorknob with Hidden Screws

    Materials Needed
    • Paperclip or key (from new doorknob)
    • Phillips head screwdriver
    If you have a doorknob with hidden screws, the process for removing it differs:
    Step 1: Look for a small hole. Remove the interior doorknob by pushing a paperclip or key into a small hole located on the outside knob.
    Hold the door while you pull the interior knob away from it. Removing the knob should reveal a faceplate secured by screws.
    Step 2: Remove the faceplate. Using a Phillips head screwdriver, remove the screws holding the faceplate in place.
    Carefully pry the faceplate away from the door and remove it.
    Step 3: Remove the exterior knob. Once you have removed the faceplate, you can easily remove the exterior doorknob.
    Step 4: Remove the latching plate. Next, use a Phillips head screwdriver to remove the latching plate that holds the door latch in place.
    Step 5: Remove the latch. Finally, remove the latch through the hole in which it’s inserted in the door.

    Installing the New Doorknob

    Materials Needed
    • Flathead screwdriver
    • Phillips head screwdriver
    Installing a doorknob is pretty much the reverse of removing it:
    Step 1: Insert the new door latch. Do this through the hole on the edge of the door.
    Step 2: Fasten the latch plate. Screw the latch plate into place to secure the latch bolt.
    Step 3: Position the faceplate. Adjust the faceplate so that the bar system from the exterior knob is aligned correctly, passing through the faceplate and latching mechanism.
    Step 4: Insert the exterior knob in the door. Insert the bars from the exterior knob through the faceplate and the latch mechanism.
    The bars should extend through the opposite side of the door.
    Step 5: Connect the interior doorknob. Do this by sliding it onto the stems. You might have to rotate the knob to get it to line up properly.
    Step 6: Tighten the screws. Insert and partially tighten the screws into the holes on the interior knob.
    Make sure everything works properly and then tighten the screws fully.
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    Our customers say the nicest things
    Our members, saved over $5 million in the last 30 days
    Find savings (100% Free)
    Rated 4.7/5 in the App Store
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    This app is truly amazing and I recommend it to everyone. They were able to save me over $100/yr on car insurance, and I hardly had to do a thing. They got finalized quotes for me in minutes, and I didn't have to call anyone. They also canceled my old policy, and got me on to my new one for me!