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How to reduce gap between double door?

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[OP]
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Sep 1, 2008
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How to reduce gap between double door?

Hi RFD

We have double door to our bedroom and there is gap between the two doors. Gap is about 1.5cm.
We have two issues because of this gap

1. You can see inside
2. The lock system does not click properly, so with even air pressure door opens up.

What is easy and best way to fix it myself?
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12 replies
Deal Addict
Nov 17, 2012
3573 posts
2596 upvotes
Toronto
You'd have to shim out the hinge side on one or both of the doors (that doesn't look like 1.5cm to me - did you measure?).

Thin flat shim material (could even be a sheet of thin plastic) between each hinge and the jamb. The hinges won't be recessed into the jamb fully, but you should be able to close the gap a bit and not have visible shims from the pivot side of the hinge.

You need some gap, otherwise the doors will touch each other as one opens while the other is stationary.
Deal Guru
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Oct 23, 2008
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GTA, ON
DAMN.... who's the builder? That's some pretty shoddy work if that gap is so large that the door can't shut properly.

Anyways, don't they normally install a wood strip on the stationary door (the one that can be latched to secure it in place) that will cover the gap? I see there is no strip, so even if you can decrease the gap, anyone from the outside can still look in.
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Deal Guru
Jan 25, 2007
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Paris
You will never 100% eliminate the gap or the doors wont open. You need a strip on the secondary door.

Also, shims behind hinges on both doors.
[OP]
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Sep 1, 2008
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Yes, I did measure it, it is 1.5cm.
It has four hinges on each door, so If I understand correctly I need to take the door out and place something between each hinge and the jam, then screw it back in?
IMG_20200108_221444.jpg
IMG_20200108_221525.jpg
[OP]
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Sep 1, 2008
640 posts
104 upvotes
chimaican wrote: DAMN.... who's the builder? That's some pretty shoddy work if that gap is so large that the door can't shut properly.

Anyways, don't they normally install a wood strip on the stationary door (the one that can be latched to secure it in place) that will cover the gap? I see there is no strip, so even if you can decrease the gap, anyone from the outside can still look in.
This is one year old house, this issue recently appeared. I think house is still settling.
Deal Addict
Jan 19, 2008
1393 posts
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Etobicoke
wood shrinking due to winter/low humidity? I would wait to see if it clears in the spring/summer. What is your home humidity? is your hardwood floor shrinking?
Deal Guru
Jan 25, 2007
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Paris
xxxray wrote: wood shrinking due to winter/low humidity? I would wait to see if it clears in the spring/summer. What is your home humidity? is your hardwood floor shrinking?
+1. Id be careful that it doesnt swell in summer, especially if you are folks that are anti-AC
Deal Addict
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Jan 2, 2012
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KINGSTON,ON
Remove one door by popping out the hinge pins. Remove the half hinge on the door jam. Cut two pieces of box board (cereal box material) the size of each hinge leaf and place them in the hinge cut out sections in the jam. You can use a glue stick for paper to keep them in place. Screw one half of each hinge back into the door jam. Reinstall the door and check the clearance. If there is still a gap, do the same for the second door.
As others have said, you will still have a gap, and still be able to see through. Usually there is a strip on one door.
[OP]
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Sep 1, 2008
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xxxray wrote: wood shrinking due to winter/low humidity? I would wait to see if it clears in the spring/summer. What is your home humidity? is your hardwood floor shrinking?
its at 42, no issues with hardwood
Deal Guru
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Sep 1, 2005
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Markham
Proper way is to work on the hinge side ie just add a spacer on one side or a smaller spacer on both sides (double the work) to reduce the center gap. There may still be a small gap but you could use some simple white weatherstripping to fix the gap.

An easier way to fix since this is a interior door and you're just trying to cover the gap - add some molding onto the closing door (if one door is primarily used) that covers the gap ie like a overhang if that makes sense. Regarding the locking, you could add a piece of wood to the "void" side of the latch so the latch has something to latch into. That piece of wood would be covered by the molding.
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Oct 9, 2010
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Windsor
Don't try and close the gap too much; while this 1.5cm might be the new normal for your door, it might seasonally change 1cm, meaning shimming the door will result in it binding in the summer. The humidity inside your house doesn't necessarily match the humidity in that wall.

Shimming the doors so they still look nice isn't too easy. Temporarily shimming them to make it work for now shouldn't take more than like 10 minutes. If you do the "ugly" shim and everything still works nice next summer, I'd consider ripping the door apart and re-shimming one door, or screwing a new piece of moulding over top of the existing jamb, and moving the trim to match.
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