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Repairing A Door That Closes By Itself...
Without the Exorcism!

My bathroom door closes by itself. Short of an exorcism, is there an easy way to stop it from doing this? I've tried door stops, but they're a PAIN when I want to CLOSE the door!

The reason the door wants to close itself is because your house has settled, and the balance of the door has been shifted enough to make gravity pull the door open. Similar to what happens if your refrigerator is not balanced- the door won't self-close at all or, even worse, will ALMOST close, allowing everything inside to defrost!!

I never dealt with a poltergeist, so you are on your own there!!. But, barring supernatural intervention, try the following trick:

  • Remove one hinge pin from the door.
  • Place the hinge pin on a very hard surface, such as a concrete step.
  • With a hammer, tap the hinge pin midway along its length, to give it a slight bend.
  • Reinstall the hinge pin. You will find it will resist a little, but tap it almost all the way in. Leave a slight gap in case you need to get it back out for further adjustment.
  • Try the door. The door should no longer move itself. By bending the hinge, you have increased the internal resistance within the hinge, so it keeps the door from moving as easily as before.
  • If you have a really crooked frame and still need just a little more resistance, remove another hinge pin and perform the same magic. I have never had a two-hinge pin-bend job fail but, since this is now on the record, one probably will fail tomorrow. If it does, your only alternative is to use one of the more inconvenient methods, such as a latching or magnetic door stop.

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