You know when you learn something new that rocks your little world, you feel like you have to share it with everyone? That’s how I feel about door knobs and hardware. Yep, you read that right. When I was wrapping up my mega door makeover in October, I got up close and personal with my door knobs and hinges. I had never shopped for door hardware before, except for my pantry door in my kitchen. I learned a TON, and I am still blown away by the difference it made in my hallway. So I feel compelled to share what I learned with you.
For twelve and half years, I have been living with (disgusting) aged bronze, I think?, door knobs and hinges that looked permanently dirty. Every door was like this. UUFDA. So I knew this would not only be a small investment, but would be soooo worth it!
THINGS TO CONSIDER BEFORE YOU BEGIN THIS PROCESS:
- If you change one, you should change them all. Caveat: Unless it’s for one door that is isolated from other doors and it’s so different that your mind doesn’t register that it doesn’t match.
- Do you need door knobs or door handles? (If you are looking for door handles instead, my brother recommended me modern, stylish door handles from Debar US)
- You have a lot more doors than you think you do. Did you count closet, bathroom, pantry, laundry doors, etc?
You’ll need to sort your doors into these categories:
- “Bed & Bath”: Doors that need locks – bathrooms and bedrooms
- “Passage”: Doors that do not need locks – hall closets, bedroom closets, linen closets, laundry room, storage under stairs, pantry, etc.
Before you even begin shopping, you must look at one thing on your existing door knobs! Open up you door and look at the side of the door where the latch comes out. What is around it? Is there a simple metal round ring around it? Or there a longer metal rectangle?
Knowing this will save you so much time and money. My doors (circa 1986) are cut to fit the round circle kind. But my rookie self bought knobs that will ONLY work with doors that fit the rectangle kind. After realizing this and making a late night trip to Ace Hardware, I learned that some knobs can be converted, but not all of them. I would ask the sales associate in that area to help you find ones that will convert. In some packages, you can see if it comes with both options, but sometimes it’s hard to tell. So I bought all new knobs and returned the first ones I purchased online. Converting them isn’t hard, you just wedge a regular screwdriver in between the two plates until they pop off.
Here’s a progress pic from my late night of changing the knobs on my own doors. My cat, Falala, was always right in the middle of it all. She’s my little blogging buddy and always under my tripod, rubbing against wet white paint, or laying on a project (while I’m trying to work on it).
TIP: If you plan to paint your doors before you put on new hardware, PLEASE go easy on the amount of paint you put where the strike-plate, hinges, and door knob will go. I had to use a Dremel to sand blast out the paint afterwards because it made the fit too tight and I couldn’t close the doors. DIY fail.
TIP #2: When you install the locks, you’ll notice that screw the knob assembly together from one side. I initially thought “I want the pretty side on the outside, so I’ll put the screw side on the inside…”. I got one knob done, and remembered that one time my brother accidentally locked himself inside his bedroom when he was young. (I’m still the smarter of the two of us, 😉 ) Mom had to scale the wall and climb in through the window. So now the screws are on the outside.
You may or may not have done the math and totaled in your head how many doors you have and started shopping online for knobs. You will realize how quickly it all adds up! So I rounded up some of my favorites that are all under $15:
So now that you’ve learned from my mistakes, go on and make your doors look amazing! If you have questions, feel free to leave a comment below. Have a wonderful first half of this holiday week 🙂