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I purchased some new door knobs for inside my house to replace my dated looking ones. The previous screw holes for my strike don't quite line up with the new ones. Is it OK to try and screw in or will I have problems? If there will be problems what would be my plan of attack to get these installed?

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Thanks!

  • You usually don't need to change the strike with the knob. Will the old strike work? – Harper - Reinstate Monica Nov 23 '19 at 2:39
  • It’s more important to have the “hole” in the strike sit back far enough that it doesn’t rattle in the frame , but not too far back that the door latch will not fit in the strike. – Lee Sam Nov 23 '19 at 2:56
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    I use this technique often. I call it "matchsticking." I use long pieces whittled from a scrap piece of wood, glue them in, nip them just proud of the surface, then hammer it flat. – John Canon Nov 23 '19 at 6:28
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If you try to use the existing holes, the screws won't sit flush with the strike. Shove a few toothpicks into the existing holes along with some wood glue. After the glue dries, position the strike, drill two small pilot holes and screw in the screws. Good luck.

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  • Do you break up the toothpicks into fine pieces or just break them the length of of the hole? Thanks! – AroundPolandTravel Nov 23 '19 at 4:14
  • A solid piece of wood works better than multiple fine pieces, but either one will fill the existing hole and work. – Eric Simpson Nov 23 '19 at 11:27
  • @AroundPolandTravel Break off the tip then break them off the depth of the hole. – JACK Nov 23 '19 at 11:57
  • Thanks! I was actually able to find a dowel the exact size of the screw hole so I used that with some wood glue. – AroundPolandTravel Nov 24 '19 at 1:03
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The holes are close enough that the new screws will probably go back into them, although at an angle. The downside is the heads of the screws will likely not sit flat inside the strike. I haven't seen a case where that hinders functionality (as the door can not be that tight in the jamb and still close anyway) but it isn't the most aesthetically pleasing thing in the world. If that doesn't bother you, don't worry about it.

If you wanted to resolve it, whittling down a wooden golf tee or shim until it fits in the old holes is one option. Just wood glue them in and cut off any extra length sticking from the hole. That will allow you to drill new holes without the bit finding the old ones. If you really want to get fancy you can use a vix bit to make sure it is centered in the hole.

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To elaborate on the matchstick solution: the full wood matchstick should fit nicely into that hole, no need to break it up. They’ll stick out obviously, just cut them flush with a razor when the glue has set. You just want to fill the hole so you can start a new one. Larger holes like those on hinge plates might take a larger dowel or a golf tee. In any case, fill the hole, give it an hour for the glue to set, come back and pilot the new holes and install your new striker. Good luck!

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