I'm trying to figure out how to tighten the handle on the front door of a new condo unit. I've done a bunch of googling and watched some YouTube videos, but they all either have 1) visible screws, 2) a hole that you can press a pin or hex key into, or 3) are Kwikset handles that you twist and pull. It appears that my handle doesn't fit into any of these groups, as it has no visible screws, no holes that I can see, and is not a Kwikset handle. Some photos are below. In the 3rd photo, I took off a plate, which is why the screws are missing.

Inside (Left): Inside (Left)

Inside (Right): Inside (Right)

Between inside and outside: Between inside and outside

Outside closeup: Outside closeup

Inside closeup: Inside closeup

Outside handle closeup: Outside handle closeup

  • 1
    Photos of the inside surfaces of the lever posts might be helpful. In almost all cases there's a poke hole somewhere, though the mechanism may have to be in a particular stat to enable it. Does either lever lock?
    – keshlam
    Commented Mar 11, 2015 at 3:18
  • Keshlam is right, there is only one picture, the first one that only shows the "inside" of the handle. Only one of these will have a 1/16" diameter hole that is dark inside, or a slot, about 1/16"X1/4" with a metal piece filling almost flush.
    – Jack
    Commented Mar 11, 2015 at 15:49
  • I'll post pictures of the inside of the handle on both sides of the door later today. I've looked very closely though and don't see any holes :) Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 18:22

3 Answers 3


The "inside" handle (on the right in the last/lower picture) will have a small spring-loaded button on the handle post (the part you don't put your hand on when opening/closing). Use an awl or equivalent tool to depress the button and remove the inside handle. Then unscrew the inside trim ring (lefty/loosey) to expose the screws that hold the whole assembly together. Tighten em up and put er back together.

  • That's the outside handle if I'm understanding correctly. I added some photos, so it's the 4th last photo now, named "Between inside and outside". The outside is on the right. I checked all over both inside and outside handles, and don't see any screws, buttons, holes, or anything... Commented Mar 11, 2015 at 2:32
  • 1
    You are spot on with the tool to remove the handle, but the rose, usually is pried off. I do see the slightest hint of a spot to start prying from on the 4th picture down. It is at the very bottom of the rosette... The type of roses that spin on or off, in my experience are Baldwin handle sets, their knobs/levers are held on by set screws. The teeth that are visible are part of the base mounting plate, the cover pries off.
    – Jack
    Commented Mar 11, 2015 at 16:03

I had a similar problem with my apartment entry door and couldn't find any answers online. So I called the building locksmith who said I should use a knife to (gently) pry off the rosette on the inside door, which is the disk that covers the base of the handle. Under the rosette should be a pair of screws that connect the two handles to either side of the door. The rosette then clicks back on top of the handle base with the screws in it.

Hope this helps anyone facing the same problem--luckily my locksmith is a very generous person who walked me through this over the phone without having to schedule a service call or charging anything--huge thank you to him!

  • Along these lines, try this video and see if it aligns with your situation: youtu.be/eigYEYR0N_w
    – alfreema
    Commented Apr 27, 2016 at 1:53

The disk(s? your pictures seem to only show one side clearly) may be threaded. The exterior one should have a "detent" that it keys into on the face of the door - the inside one would not. When both are tight, the outside one should not be able to be turned.

In some cases the inside one is threaded and the outside one is held in place by screws that the inside one covers up.

A strap wrench can be handy if it is a threaded disk.

  • Thanks for your response. The outside handle/disk looks exactly the same as the inside one - no visible screws or holes. It also looks exactly the same inside when I pull it out a bit like I did in the last photo. Commented Mar 11, 2015 at 0:46
  • The pulled-out picture sure looks like "through the door screw mounts" are showing. Could be the "finish layer" of the disc unscrews and reveals screw-heads (and perhaps a handle-removal method) on the inside...I'm talking about the whole edge of the disc being fine internal screw threads, so the outer layer of the disc turns on an inner layer.
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Mar 11, 2015 at 0:54
  • That's a good idea... but I tried unscrewing the disk and it wouldn't budge. I added some more pictures. In the last one, you can see a little space between the handle and the disk... don't know if that's indicative of anything. I also noticed the innards of the inside and outside disks are a bit different. Inside the outer disk, there are 4 things that look like screw mounts, and inside the inner disk, there are only two. Commented Mar 11, 2015 at 2:29
  • OK, there is always a way to disassemble but generally ONLY from the inside for keyed or privacy locksets. This appears to be what is called a "passage" handle-set (no way to lock from either side). I would carefully twist (I know you already tried, but they get jammed) and maybe gently pry on the trim rosettes. You need to reveal the attachment screws which are, without a doubt, hidden by them. If the handle needs to be removed to remove the rosettes, the mechanism for that will be revealed when the rosettes are pulled away enough. Commented Mar 11, 2015 at 3:17
  • By trim rosettes, do you mean the metal teeth in the second last picture, inside of the metal disk? Commented Mar 11, 2015 at 12:03

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