DIY How To

Reverse a Door

The way a door opens could be to your disliking, due to the addition of furniture within a room it may be more practical to have the door opening from left to right instead of the other way round or vice versa.

If you want to change the way that a door opens into a room, open the door fully and place wedges underneath to support its weight and remove the screws from the door frame hinges. If the hinges have had a few coats of paint it will be necessary to remove the paint from the slots in the screws, this can be done by chipping out the paint with an old screwdriver and a hammer. Remove the door and store securely.

Reversing a Door

Top TipBefore removing the door measure the clearance from the floor to the bottom of the door. Use this measure to refit the door to the original height on the opposite side.

Unscrew striker plate

With the door out of the way unscrew and remove the striker plate, again if it has been painted over you may need to chip the paint from the slot in the screw. Put the striker plate to one side as we will need to refit this later.


The recesses that are left from the removal of the hinges and striker plate now need to be filled. This can be done by either cutting pieces of wood to size and glueing into position, or an appropriate wood filler can be used. These come in all sorts of colours and can also be stained, painted or varnished.

Mark hinge position

Now we can remove the hinges from the door, as they will need refitting on the other side. With the hinges removed fill in the recess, again using wood or an appropriate wood filler.
Use a try square to line up with the old hinge position and mark the top and bottom of the new hinge position. Cut out the recess for the hinge using a sharp chisel. Cut along the vertical lines first and then make a series of cuts across the width of the marked area to the depth of the hinge. Make shallow angle cuts removing the waste until the required depth is achieved.

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