Are door handles easy to replace
Updated: Jul 12, 2021
Your existing door handles may be in need of some TLC or replacement but is it a DIY or do you need a handy-man. A good door handle will last 25 years or more. But there are components that do wear and occasionally fail without proper attention.
Are door handles easy to replace? Yes the majority of door handles are easy to replace. Replacing door handles is one thing. Removing them is another. If you are looking at replacing your door handles you need to know some details about how they are fitted.
Not all door handles are the same
If you intend to replace the door handle, bringing in the door handle and a picture of the related door showing handle position and cut-out will help us to help you.
Alternatively measuring the size of the rose plate and the size of the actual cutout on the door will provide some good information to know what to look for as a replacement.
Some door handles require a large (70 mm+/-) hole cut, whereas the majority of door handles only require a small 25 mm cut out.
Firstly we should ask why do you want to change the door handles?
a) they are old and you want new - possible problems
b) they are sagging or not working correctly - possible repair
c) I do this every few years to annoy my husband - possible divorce
Secondly will you be replacing your doors or having them patched and/or painted if needed. That is a question for your DIY or handy-man to answer after the doors are examined. You need to know if the door is still effective or should it be replaced.
Thirdly, are these handles on a lock, latch or privacy? Does the lock, latch, or privacy work effectively or is it a problem? Do you need to replace them. That could mean more DIY, handy-man intervention.
It is not uncommon to find your quality door handles are still in good condition after 20 years or so but the latch or lock is failing. Alternatively if the finish of the door handle is looking old, a powder coat finish may be the answer.
Removing Door Handles
Generally most door handles are easy to remove. The majority of door handles will be fixed to the door with screws, while some will have a grub screw fixing. Some will have concealed fixings hidden under the outer rose plate. Some may have double fixings - screw from both sides.
Look for screw head type, grub screws, or concealed fixings:
Visible fix screws can be removed with an appropriate screw driver.
Concealed fix will have a cover plate or outer rose which will either screw off counter clockwise, or will have a slip on cover which is held on by a rubber seal.
European handles will more than likely have a push on cover which will require extra care to remove. There should be a small insertion hole at the bottom of the cover plate. Using a small blade screwdriver you can lever the cover off. NOTE remove grub screws first! Do take extra care with these as you could damage the door in the process.
The question of replacement will depend on the new handle fittings.
The thought should probably be if you are not a DIY person then getting a handy-man is the better option.
But before you make a final decision you need to ask will the new door handle...
a) fit the hole in the door and
b) will it require some resizing or filling existing cut-out.
If we have the handle and a photo of the door showing the cutout, we can point you in the right direction. That is why we suggest you bring them with you.
Like for Like
Replacing like for like is going to be relatively easy. Assuming the same handle is still available and fittings have not changed then DIY can be very simple.
Door handle style and design do change. You may find the same shape handle but the fitting has changed which may require additional door work to replace it.
You may find the 'same' handle but made by another manufacturer which could effect price.
It may be possible to repair your existing door handle. This may involve a replacement spring or an upgraded latch for example.
Some older handle where the spring has surrendered and parts are no longer available can re-live with an upgraded heavy duty latch.
Again we would need to see it to decide best action to take.
Refurbishment Door Handles
If your door handles are looking old and worn but still function, we may be able to offer a refurbishment option.
The older brass handles may be able to be refurbished. We could replace springs, cams, even clean up the surface of the handle. Some may be suitable for powder coating.
Bring a handle or two to us so that we can assess them for refurbishment.
New Door New Handles
If you are replacing the doors then a new handle should not be a problem, and we have many to choose from.
The range of door handles is overwhelming but if you have a idea of what you like or prefer then we can help.
Our web site will link you to some of the worlds best door handles. You only need to decide which one is for you.
Read our article on Why Clean Your Door Handles which will also prolong the life of your door handles.
If you are not sure what you can do, send us a picture or two so that we can see what you have. Or bring a handle with door pictures for a show and tell.
This will allow us to offer a few suggestions or options and a direction to take.
Door handles are generally neglected over time. New and shiny when first installed then just part of the furniture.
We tend to change chairs and paint before we consider the lonely door handle that always works, opens, and closes the door year after year with little or no TLC.
Door Handles open doors to the future.