How Do Doors Open By Themselves?

25 Feb 2020

It’s always unsettling when a door opens by itself. That’s why so many supernatural movies include a creaky door swinging open without any apparent reason. It’s like movie shorthand for something being wrong inside a house.

If your doors are prone to swinging open without human intervention, while you might get a shiver up your spine, before you call in the paranormal investigators, you should check out the cause.

Normal or paranormal?

If it’s not a ghost blowing your door open, then what is causing the door to swing out by itself? There are a variety of non-spooky causes, and luckily all of them are quite simple to fix and may involve a spot of DIY. Improper framing, misalignment walls which aren’t plumb and un-even floors could all be the culprits.

First, you should look for the simplest solutions. Your errant door could simply be caused by a draught. Is it windy outside? Is there a way for wind to get into your house? You should be able to feel it if this is the case. Find where the draught is coming in and seal it, even if it’s just by closing the curtains over rattling windows or securing insulation tape.

Tighten those hinges

If it’s not a draught, maybe it’s the hinges. If they are loose or out of alignment, the door won’t stay shut. Check to see if the hinges are lined up by using a level. Grab a screwdriver and make sure the screws on the hinges are tight. At the same time investigate whether the floor is level.

If it still isn’t right, take the nail out of the top hinge and bend it slightly, then put it back into position. With enough friction, the door will start to behave itself and stay closed when you want it to.

Settle the matter

The problem might need greater investigation. Houses of all ages can settle, which means they shift slightly on the ground they are built on. This can throw plumb lines out of kilter, causing the doors to open, even if the settling is too subtle to see by the naked eye.

Check out the spacing between your door and the jamb – is it uneven? A shim is a quick fix behind the door hinges, using a slim wedge-shaped piece of wood which makes a door level and plumb fitting. You can glue and slide in a shim at the place where your door bows out from the plumb line.

Seek help

If you can’t manage the problem by yourself, or want a new door, we can help you. Door Stop has professional experts who know all about doors and how to get the best out of them. From general advice to buying a new door altogether, give us a call and we’ll be happy to help. With 35 years of experience, and showrooms in Joondalup and Osborne Park, check us out. We can open doors for you – but only when you want them to be open.

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