I have an older home built circa 1977 and one of the bedroom doors now will not stay closed. Meaning, if I go to close it, the door does not lay flat against the frame, and the door tongue will not go into the grove of the door so it can be latched. The door is not bowed, nor is the frame broken or cracked. What is causing the door not to close flushly and how do I remedy?

  • 1
    The house settled and the latch needs some adjustment. It's really not too uncommon. It sounds like you might need to find a friend familiar with household repairs to lend a hand.
    – Tyson
    Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 19:55
  • @Tyson - will do. Was not sure if it was a major issue or something small. Will look for a "handyman" of sorts in my area to try the repair. Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 19:57
  • Sometimes it's simpler than other times, just depends how out of alignment it's become. It sounds like your door closes correctly but just doesn't quite latch.
    – Tyson
    Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 20:08
  • If I push the door all the way, everything aligns as it should. But it does not "catch" it just springs back open a small amount. Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 20:16

2 Answers 2


I experienced this at a previous property of mine. I found the easiest thing ended up being adjusting the latch. Unscrew the metal plate and use a small sharp chisel to carve out the required area (and maybe a large drill bit if the actual recess needs expanding more than a millimetre or two). Any gaps can be filled with wood filler after the fact.

If the case is that the door fails to easily sit flush in the frame then you may want to adjust the hinges (usually by digging out the hinge recess in the frame a little more) to see if that stops the “bounce”


Depending on the situation you may be able to move the hinges in or out (toward or away from the jamb stop), as well as the strike plate on thee jamb. Far easier than moving the entire jamb for a small adjustment.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.