I had the closer for my storm door strip out and re-installed it a few inches away to bite into new material but it happened again (please see photo). I'd love some advise on how to fix this so it doesn't happen again and because, at this point, I need to repair the existing holes to create a place for the holder to attach to the door (I don't have room with the closer to move further up or down the door away from the problem area)

View of the storm door, closer removed

A closer look at the stripped portion of the storm door


  • Did the closer come with the door, or was it a 3rd party add-on? Because the closer (or users) are imposing more force than the door's structure is able to bear in that fairly small mounting area. If the factory shipped it that way, it ought to work and maybe someone is overpowering it. Jul 24, 2017 at 23:06

2 Answers 2


I'd get some sleeve bolts and run them all the way through a set of the existing holes. I'd be very surprised if the problem recurs. Use the threaded side on the bracket.

Drill completely through the door at the size of the female bolt (around 3/8"). Insert the female bolt from the exterior of the door, and the male from the interior (through the bracket). Ideally the female bolt length is just less than the thickness of the door at that point to provide maximum stability, as shown here:

enter image description here

Alternatively, get yourself a length of 1/8" aluminum bar stock as wide as will fit there. Maybe you can find gold anodized to coordinate, or paint it white.

Fasten that to the door using six or eight screws, depending on how the layout works. They should be chunky, like the closer screws, to bite well. #12 or #14 should do. Pre-drill the aluminum to the outer diameter of the threads so that there's no grab on the way through, and pilot the door slightly smaller than the screw shank.

Once that's installed, remove it and drill and tap for #12-24 or 1/4"-20 screws. Remount the plate and mount the closer bracket with them.

  • thank you very much for such a thorough response so quickly. I envy your knowledge of home improvement, I wish I was so handy. I want to take a crack at the sleeve bolt option first since it seems much simpler. Is the idea that I get the bolt inside of the door (i.e. on the other side of those stripped out holes in the picture) and then push the receiving end of the bolt (the female end) through the existing stripped hole ready to receive the male? Am I understanding that correctly?
    – Michael
    Jul 24, 2017 at 21:19
  • I'm blown away, this is extremely clear and helpful, I really appreciate it. I will measure the width of the door and hit up the hardware store. I will let you know how it goes. Thanks!
    – Michael
    Jul 24, 2017 at 22:33
  • If you go with the backer plate you discuss in paragraph 3, I would get as wide and tall a plate as will fit in the door, e.g. 1.5" x 30" and attach it to the door in as many places as possible, ideally with the sex bolts (wife approving of course). You would need to predrill the holes through 1/8" aluminum stock. If I was threading the opener mount holes I would want thicker stock than 1/8", like 1/4". A 1/4-20 screw will only get 2.5 threads of purchase in 1/8 stock. Jul 24, 2017 at 23:11
  • Quick, long overdue update. I had to special order the bolts as none of the local hardware stores had the right size. Even the ones I special ordered were close but no cigar but a few washers made up the difference. Long story short this solution worked great! The stopper is not securely fastened to the door and the project is done. Thank you very VERY much for all of your detailed assistance. I really appreciate it
    – Michael
    Sep 5, 2017 at 19:12
  • Good to hear. I'd think that shortening one part or the other with a hacksaw or grider would eliminate the need for washers.
    – isherwood
    Sep 5, 2017 at 19:14

I used a tap to create new screw threads where the old holes existed. In my case, I replaced sheet metal screws with a M6x1.0 bolt, and used a M6x1.0 tap, although any size that is slightly larger than the original screws will work. I used a pair of vice grips to turn the tap since I don't have the tool to turn it. This worked fine, but you need to be careful that it is straight the entire time you are turning new threads.

I think this is a good solution, since it doesn't involve any additional fabrication or modification of the door, and it should be stronger than the original mount.

In total, it took me about 5 minutes to tap out the holes. I also had to widen the closer mount slightly so the bolts would fit through them, which is a little difficult without a drill press. I taped threads into the closer mount then drilled them out, although a dremel would have probably worked well here.

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