The double door of the main bedroom are hollow and 1 1/4" thick. All handle/lock sets I find require a 1 3/8" minimum door thickness for the locking mechanism. Handyman who is helping me told me the doors are that thin because they are intended to be used as closet doors.

  1. Is there an off-the-shelf handle and/or lock product that I am missing (that would accommodate our door thickness) or
  2. Is there a creative and not too ugly MacGyver way the handyman can install something to give me and my husband some privacy.

As it stands, kids can (and do) open the door and come in at any time.

  • Our bedroom had double doors when we moved in. After installing some ceiling lights, that was the top priority to fix. We now have a single door and a nice built-in book shelf where the 2nd door used to be. (Wife liked the horrible wall paper in the bedroom, but we didn't have any more, so a built it it was. Not a hill I was willing to die on.)
    – FreeMan
    Commented Sep 29, 2023 at 15:05
  • Show us a photo of your door for better suggestions.
    – isherwood
    Commented Sep 29, 2023 at 15:09

3 Answers 3


A privacy bolt will do the trick so long as it can be installed in a way that normal attempts to open the door won't break the door apart, no matter how unreasonable "normal" is in your home.

enter image description here

Hollow doors have solid frames within. In the above photo, the bolt has two brackets. The one nearer the edge of the door should be screwed into the solid frame, using appropriate screws of maximum possible length. This requires some experience and finesse, knowing what the frame is made of and whether or how to drill it. The other bracket should be installed with hollow door anchors. Double doors will need two of these, one of which could be kept latched at all times.

Another way if the doors open inwards is to put a couple of U-shaped brackets on either side of the door frame and hang a broom stick between them.

Another approach that is more robust is to sandwich the door with metal plates about 3 inches by 8 inches in the area of the bolts or locks. The plates on both sides of the door are bolted to one another through the door, and any locking hardware is attached to the plates. This spreads the forces of any attempt to open the door across a wider area. Hopefully this isn't necessary, IE, the doors aren't that sh*tty and your kids aren't that determined?


Back the latch sets with a filler plate. This can be 1/8" plywood, for example, sanded and finished to match the door, and attached with something as simple as double-sided tape. If done with craftspersonship it'll be fairly inconspicuous.

Note that Schlage, for example, manufactures spacer rings to allow commercial hardware intended for 1-3/4" exterior doors on residential interior doors. These may be suitable for your purposes.

enter image description here



It isn't pretty, but I'd suggest a surface mounted vertical deadbolt in this case. These are available with or without a lock cylinder so they can be opened from outside You might need a mounting plate on the outside so the cylinder and fasteners don't pull through the cheap door; I know those can be obtained through locksmiths and possibly through home centers.

(Image swiped from eBay; gods know where the seller swiped it from in turn.) no-name example of a vertical deadbolt lock


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