How to properly install door knobs and levers

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How to properly install door knobs and levers

By emily.bailey

Thursday, March 30, 2017

How to install a door lever

Here are all the steps you need to follow to properly install a door knob or lever in just a few minutes.

 

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Updating your interior door knobs and levers to a new style and finish that coordinates with your lighting, plumbing and decor is an easy way to give your home a finishing touch. Before we get started, be sure your door is properly drilled and aligned with this door prep checklist. You can complete your knob and lever installation in just a few minutes with minimal tools - tape measure and a #2 Phillips Head screwdriver. Keep in mind that an electric drill is not recommended for installation as it can easily strip the screws and damage your hardware.

Hardware checklist

Once you've gathered your tools, you're ready to get started installing your door knobs or levers. The first step you want to take is to ensure you have all parts and pieces. Here's a checklist to help you be sure:
Parts of a door lock

 Outside housing: This is the "exterior" portion of your hardware with the spindle extending from the back.
 

 Inside housing: This is the "interior" portion of your knob or lever. For privacy knobs and levers, you'll want to be sure the push-button lock is on the inside.
 

 Latch: The spring operated bolt with a beveled face to permit a latching action when the door closes.
 

 Round drive-in faceplate: This is an optional faceplate that may replace the rectangular faceplate already attached to the latch if your door calls for it.
 

 Strike plate: The strike plate is the metal plate that will be affixed to the door frame.
 

 Short screws: These will be used to secure the bolt and faceplate with the door.
 

 Tapered long screws: These will be used to secure the inside housing to the outside housing.
 

 Pin tool: This will only be used for curved levers that may need to change handing.

 

Installation instructions

1You'll begin by installing the latch first.*
door knob latchbolt

*If you need to replace the rectangular faceplate with the round drive-in faceplate, follow steps a-c below before going further. You'll also need to add a flat head screwdriver, hammer and block of wood to your tool set.

a. Remove faceplate with a flat head screwdriver

 

b. Twist and remove remaining support plate

 

c. Install round drive-in faceplate with just a snap
 

 

2If you're using the standard rectangular faceplate, slide the latch into place with the bevel facing the doorjamb and secure with the two short screws.
How to install a door knob

For the drive-in faceplate, slide into place with the bevel facing the doorjamb and gently tap in to place, flush with the door edge using a block of wood to protect the latch.

 

Installing round faceplate latch

3Next, you'll install the strike plate on the doorjamb using the two short wood screws.
Door strike plate

4Begin installing the lever or knob by placing the outside housing first. If you're installing a lever, you'll want to make sure the lever is pointing away from the door edge.
Lever and door knob installation

5Align the spindle with the slot in the latch and slide into place.
Door lock installation

6Now install the inside housing. If you're installing a lever, orient the lever just as you did with the outside housing, pointing away from the edge of the door. 

7With the screw holes in a vertical position, align the square in the back of the door knob or lever with the square spindle. Slide the inside housing into place.
Door knob installation

8Secure with the two remaining screws.
How to install a door lock

To see all these steps in action as well as how to change the handing and test your lock, watch our privacy/passage lock installation video. Once you've installed your new hardware, we'd love to see the before and after. Share your photos with us on Facebook and Instagram.
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