How to Fix a Squeaky or Stiff Door


Open front door

Over time, you may find that the doors around your house begin to show signs of ageing. They can often become stiff and hard to close or you may notice that they have started squeaking as you open them. These are common issues that can occur with internal and external doors.

Whether you’ve just moved into a new house or you’ve been at the same property for years and you’ve noticed these issues with your door, there are ways to fix them. Here are our top tips on how to fix squeaky doors and what could be causing them to be stiff or sticky.

Common causes of a squeaky door

Bent hinges

More often than not, if your door starts to squeak, the noise will be coming from the hinges. When the metal hinges rub together, it creates the unpleasant screeching sound that you hear every time you open and close the door. Slight bends in the hinges can be caused by the weight of the door over time or if excessive weight is put on the door.

The fix: A good way to tell if your hinges are bent is to take them off the door so you can see them properly. If they are bent out of shape, they’ll most likely need to be replaced. We offer a wide range of door furniture in different styles and materials including high-quality door hinges

Sediment in the hinges

Another reason that your hinges could be squeaking is due to friction between the moving parts. This can happen over time due to a build of dust or dirt in the hinge. Or a lack of lubrication may be causing the screeching sound, which can be more or less severe depending on the type of metal the hinge is made of. 

The fix: If you take the hinges off your door and find that they aren’t bent, then they could be fixed without having to replace them. Apply an industrial lubricant such as WD40 to the joints of the hinge and the hinge pin. This should reduce friction and get rid of the squeaking noise. 

Fixing door hinge

Door frame friction

Another possible cause of a squeaking could be the door itself rubbing against the frame. This can happen over time due to the natural movement of the door frame or sagging of the door itself. It can also occur after decorating as a new layer of paint decreases the gap between the door and frame, causing them to rub.

The fix: There are a few different possible fixes for this problem. If you notice the top of the door is what’s catching on the frame, the top hinge may have come loose so you may need to re-install it with stronger screws or position it a little higher. 

Walls can move and alter over time which can displace door frames. If this has happened, you may need to look at installing a new one. Browse our range of door frames and mouldings for internal and external use to find one that matches your interior design style. 

Common causes of a stiff or sticky door

Forgetting to sand door edges

In addition to causing your doors to squeak, paint can also cause enough friction to make it difficult to open and close. A common mistake homeowners make when decorating is forgetting to sand doors and frames before re-painting. This causes a build-up of paint layers over time and results in sticky doors that can’t close properly.

The fix: If you’re planning to re-decorate and paint your internal or external doors, be sure to sand down all of the edges properly. This will remove the previous layer of paint and make sure there is still the right amount of space between the door and the frame.

Poorly fitted doors or frames

If you notice that a newly installed door is starting to stick or isn’t closing properly, it could be a sign of poor installation. If the hinges aren’t properly secured with the right screws or the frame isn’t properly level, the whole thing can be off-kilter and may not close properly. 

The fix: If you think that your door or frame has been poorly fitted by yourself or a contractor, it’s probably best to get a professional opinion. Either contact the person that installed it or find a reputable contractor to come and take a look. You may need to re-install the door or frame.

Sanding door edges

Temperature changes

As the weather changes throughout the months, the temperature can cause your doors and frames to expand. When this happens, it can cause them to become wedged in place, making them difficult to open. This can often happen to external doors during extreme temperatures but may also affect internal doors too.

The fix: If you notice that your door only tends to stick during certain times of the year, the temperature or humidity is likely the issue. A simple fix is to take your door off its hinges and sand down around the edges. This will give a little more leeway when it starts to expand.

Broken or stiff hinges

If you notice that your door has become generally stiff as it opens and closes but isn’t getting stuck to the frame, it may be an issue with the hinges. Over time, hinges can become bent or stiff, causing them not to open smoothly. 

The fix: Using an industrial lubricant such as WD40 can help to decrease friction and remove any sediment build-up. However, if that fails, it may be time to replace the hinges. We stock a wide range of high-quality hinges in different designs suited for a range of doors and frames.

Reimagine your home with Doordeals

If you’re having trouble with a squeaky or stiff door and you decide it’s time to upgrade and find a replacement, we’re here to help. At Doordeals, we specialise in providing a range of high-quality internal and external doors, that suit a range of different styles. Browse our full product range and start saving more energy in your home.