How To Install a Door Lock in 5 Easy Steps


How To Install a Door Lock in 5 Easy Steps

Strap in, you’re about to become a lock installation expert! This is one of the most common door repairs out there, and if you’re not sure how to do it, you can always call door professionals like ourselves to help you out. Here’s a summary (don’t worry, below I’ll give you the full 5 course meal): first, measure those door holes like a pro, ensuring the new lock’s gonna fit like a glove. Backset distance? Check that too—could be 2 3/8 or 2 3/4 inches, don’t confuse ’em. Now, let’s make sure your key game is strong. Matching keys? Yes, please. Rip out that old doorknob and latch with the finesse of a cat burglar, adjust the mortise if needed, and move on! Installing the new lock and deadbolt is next—like fitting the last piece of a puzzle. Slide, align, screw, and you’re a lock-star! Stick around, and let’s reveal more secrets together.

Key Takeaways

  • Measure the door for the lock, ensuring the hole diameter and backset distance match the new lock.
  • Remove the old door knob and latch, adjusting the mortise as needed for a snug fit.
  • Confirm the new key matches existing locks for consistency and ease of use.
  • Install the new lock and deadbolt, aligning screws and replacing the strike plate for security.
  • Securely fasten the decorative plate to enhance the lock’s appearance and protection.

Measuring for Replacement Lock


Before you tackle the task of replacing your door lock, it’s crucial to accurately measure the existing space to ensure the new lock fits perfectly. Whip out your trusty tape measure, because it’s time for some detective work.

First, measure the diameter of those mysterious holes already cut into your door. It’s like fitting a square peg in a round hole, but, you know, actually possible if the sizes match. Most holes play nice at 2 1/8 inches, but don’t take chances—check to be sure.

Then, get cozy with the edge of your door to find the distance to the center of this hole. It’s known as the backset, and it’s either going to be your friend at 2 3/8 inches or play hard to get at 2 3/4 inches. Choose wisely, or you’ll be revisiting this task sooner than you’d like.

Make Sure The Key Matches


Upon verifying that your new lock fits perfectly, it’s essential to confirm that the key aligns with your existing locks for a seamless experience. You know, no one enjoys a jumble of keys, especially when they’re late and trying to look somewhat composed.

If you want to use the same brand, jot down the brands of your current locks and snag a matching key from a company like Home Depot or Lowe’s. Too much effort? Ring up a store associate from those stores; they’re like matchmakers but for locks and keys.

And if you’re going all out with brand new locksets, there’s a little secret on the back of the package—yes, the key code. It’s like a cheat code but for making keys play nice together. Easy peasy!

Remove the Door Knob and Replace the Latch


To start, unscrew the door knob from the interior side to remove it from both sides of the door. Now, you’re already halfway to becoming a door lock installing legend.

Next up, tackle those two screws on the latch plate like a pro. With a twist and shout (or just a twist), remove the latch from its cozy nook.

Sometimes, you’ll play carpenter and need to snip or expand that mortise – it’s like giving your door a mini makeover. Slide the new latch in, ensuring the tapered end points where you’ll nudge the door shut.

It’s all about direction, folks. Make sure the latch plate sits snug and flush, like it was always meant to be there. Voilà, you’ve mastered the art of the latch swap!

Remove the Old Deadbolt


Kicking off the removal of the old deadbolt, start by unscrewing the fastenings from the interior side to disassemble it. It’s like performing surgery on your door, but without the need for a medical degree.

Just grab your screwdriver, and let’s get cracking. First, show those screws who’s boss by gently coaxing them out of their snug homes. With a bit of elbow grease, they’ll come right out, no fuss.

Next, tackle the two rogue screws on the edge of the door. These guys are the gatekeepers of the deadbolt, quietly holding the fort. Unscrew them, and BAM, the bolt is free to leave its post.

And just like that, you’ve evicted your old deadbolt. Easy-peasy, right?

Install New Lock and Deadbolt


Now that you’ve removed the old deadbolt and lock cylinder, it’s time to install your new lock and deadbolt for enhanced security.

Slide both knobs onto the spindle, giving it the old ‘in and through’ move. Feel like a locksmith yet? I do.

Next, play matchmaker by aligning the screws from the inside knob with the exterior one’s cylinders—tighten those screws until they’re snug as a bug in a rug.

Say goodbye to the old mounting plate, and swap that puppy out for the new one. Do a quick door open-close routine to check the latch’s love affair with the strike plate.

Now, the grand finale: insert the new deadbolt, securing it with screws, and attach the decorative plate.


BONUS: How To Install Smart Door Locks


The process is very similar for smart door locks (or smart locks for short), just follow the instructions on the packaging, they provide an extra layer of security and make it harder for intruders to access your home through your doors. Installing a smart door lock is like upgrading from a flip phone to a smartphone – suddenly your door is more intelligent than you! Or at least it was that way for me. Start by unboxing your shiny new smart lock and take a moment to appreciate its sleek design – it’s like the James Bond of locks, minus the tuxedo.

Next, follow the installation instructions diligently; don’t just wing it like a DIY hero. The good news is, no more fumbling with keys – just a few screws here and there, and bazinga! Now you can lock and unlock your door with a tap on your phone or a secret code that even your pet parrot can memorize.

But wait, there’s more! Smart door locks are not just for show-offs. They offer extra layers of security with features like activity logs, temporary access codes, and even the ability to unlock remotely – perfect for those times when you forget your keys but remember your phone (which is always, let’s be real). So, say goodbye to the old clunky lock and embrace the future – your door will thank you!


And there you have it, you’re now a door lock wizard!

Imagine, if you will, our friend Bob. Bob thought installing a new lock would be as easy as pie, but without measuring his backset, he ended up with a lock that wouldn’t fit. Classic Bob move, right? Don’t be like Bob.

Measure twice, install once, and abra cadabra, you’ve not only upgraded your security, but possibly your curb appeal too. Remember, a well-installed lock is like a good joke—secure, engaging, and always a welcome addition.

And lastly, if you can’t figure it out, you can always call a door professional like the guys over at Your New Door

Happy locking!

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