Stopping door hinges from squealing

Opening and closing a door in your home is an everyday occurrence that shouldn't turn any heads. Over time, however, the hinges will grow noisier and start squealing like a bad horror movie effect every time the door is moved.

Thankfully, there are several simple fixes that will silence a noisy door. If the remedies don't work, you may need to go a step further and make sure the door is hung properly.

Perhaps the most popular method of quieting a squeaky door is to put some petroleum jelly on the hinges. The magazine Family Handyman says this process starts by using a hammer and nail to tap out the hinge pins. Keep the door closed during this process, and work on one hinge at a time. You may need a helper to lift up on the door handle if the pins are binding.

Once you have removed the pins, give them a light coating of petroleum jelly and put a small amount in the pin hole. Reinsert the pins and use a rag to remove any excess jelly. Once the hinges are reassembled, open and close the door a few times to work the jelly into the hinge joints.

The same process can be completed with petroleum jelly substitutes. Popular Mechanics says white lithium grease is one option. Angie's List suggests removing the pins and putting melted paraffin candles into the holes.

You may be able to cut down on hinge noise without any disassembly. Rubbing bar soap on the hinges will help lubricate them, but you should avoid using glycerin-based soaps since these will attract moisture and may cause rust to form. You might also use a rag or cotton swabs to apply olive oil to the top of the hinges. Tom Silva, writing for This Old House, says blowing graphite on the hinges after attempting a fix can be effective if the hinge is still squeaking afterward.

Spraying lubricant on the hinges isn't the best solution. Popular Mechanics says the spray will only stop the squeaking temporarily. AMJ Campbell, a Canadian moving and storage company, says spray lubricants can attract dust and dirt while also causing discoloration.

If squeaking persists after you attempt one of these options, the problem may stem from a problem with the door itself. Silva says the hinge may be out of alignment, in which case you'll have to carefully adjust it without causing damage to the hinge itself.

Check to see if the noise is coupled with other problems, such as a sticking door. AMJ Campbell says this situation may point to a larger problem, such as an issue with the foundation.

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