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Sure Cure for Loose Hinges

If a door sags because the hinge holes are stripped, you can use dowels to save the day.

Sure cure for loose hinges
Illustration by Narda Lebo

A loose butt hinge will cause a door to hang crooked and stick. Sometimes retightening the hinge screws is all it takes to fix the problem. But if the screws can't be tightened because the holes are stripped, try this:

Open the door wide and insert a wedge under the bottom outside corner to level it. Remove the screws that hold the loose hinge leaf to the door jamb. (If the hinge and jamb are painted, cut the paint around the leaf with a utility knife.) Swing the leaf away from the jamb. Then bore out the stripped holes with a 3/8-inch-diameter bit.

Spread carpenter's glue onto a 3/8-inch-diameter x 1-inch-long wood dowel and tap it into the hole until it's flush with the jamb. Bore out and plug each of the remaining stripped screw holes the same way.

Wait at least an hour. Then reposition the hinge leaf and bore 1/8-inch-diameter pilot holes. Finish by securing the hinge by driving screws into the dowel-reinforced holes.

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Sure Cure for Loose Hinges

 

Sure Cure for Loose Hinges

Sure Cure for Loose Hinges
Illustration by Narda Lebo

Sure Cure for Loose Hinges

 
 

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