Remove a Heavy Door Without Breaking Your Back

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 20,608
    Gary Wentz, an Editor with the Family Handyman Magazine, shows you how to remove a heavy door without breaking your back.

    Gary Wentz: Hi! I'm Gary Wentz, an Editor with the Family Handyman Magazine, the leader in DIY Home Improvement. Today we're talking about door repairs, now I'm going to show you how to remove a door, a heavy door without breaking your back. First thing I'm going to do is loosen the hinge screws in all three hinges. Just a little bit, maybe a half a turn each. That gives the hinges a little play, so that the knuckles separate and go back to the other a little easier. So I'm going to go ahead and do that with all three hinges.

    Next, close the door and put some spacers under it near the hinges, I'm just using some scraps of plywood here; spacers should fit loosely not tight. Now to separate the hinges, what you need to do is drive up the hinge pins, and for that all you need is a big nail and a hammer. You're getting with the bottom hinge, drive the hinge-pin upward with your hammer and nail, and then you should be able to grab it with pliers and pull it out.

    If you run into a really stubborn hinge, grab it hard with your pliers and tap the pliers with your hammer. If all the hinge pins are removed, the door is ready to fall right out of its opening. All you have to do is turn the knob, open it slightly and lift the door. To put the door back in place, set it on the same spacers as you used before. My secret weapon here is a flat bar and a little block of plywood, all I do is slip the bar under the center of the door, and then using my foot, I can raise the door to just the right height so that the hinge is made up. I can even move the door in and out slightly by shifting my foot.

    Don't worry about getting all three hinges made it up at the same time. Just get the top one in place first, drop in the hinge, and work your way down, using the flat bar to position each hinge, one at a time, it gets easier as you go down. Don't forget to tighten up the hinge screws before you quit for the day. That's how to remove a heavy door and get it back in place without ending up at the chiropractor.