Sunday, March 16, 2014

How to Remove an Old Door Knob

The first things I changed when I moved into my home were nearly all the door knobs.  I changed the exterior door knobs for safety reasons and the interior knobs for aesthetics.  Googling "how to remove an old door knob" gave me a lot of results, but I never found a "how to" on the specific knobs that I had in my home.  They aren't similar to the new ones I've installed because my old knobs don't have any exposed screws.  So where was I supposed to start?

I read multiple articles and posts about removing old door knobs and the ideas were essentially the same.  Slowly take away the parts that cover the screws and remove as many pieces of the knob as you can until you are done.  So, after combining different steps from different posts, this is what I did to remove all of my knobs.

First, I used a utility knife to cut around the knob so that i could cut away at the paint that was holding the knob cover (?) to the door.

I also used my flathead screwdriver to chip away at the thick layer of paint, but I really don't recommend doing that because you can scratch or create deep dents in your door if you aren't careful.

Then, looking at my door knob from a side view I was able to see a little tab that stood out at the neck of the knob.  I used my flathead screwdriver and pushed in on the tab while using my other hand to pull the knob straight out.  I don't have a picture of myself doing this because I only have two hands {boo Wendy, boo!}, but this picture gives you an idea:

Afterwards, I was left with this:

At this point, the knob cover (i'm sorry I don't know the technical term) is still on.  To remove the knob cover, I used a small flathead to depress the little loop that was sticking out while wedging another flathead between the cover and the door.  I worked my way around the entire cover until it literally popped off.

Finally, the screws were exposed!  Yay!

I unscrewed the screws and removed any pieces I could.  I had to use a little muscle to push the knob out through the other side.  

Lastly, you're supposed to unscrew the lock from the sides, but I did this first, which is why the knobs are still attached in this picture:

The lock popped right out with a little wiggling and I was left with this:

Those scratches around the hole are from the utility knife and screwdriver I used to loosen the knob from the door.  Nothing a little sandpaper and paint can't cover!

Replacing door knobs is a easy and quick way to update an old home.  If you have knobs like mine, I hope this post helped.  Installing new door knobs is actually a lot easier because of the detailed instructions manufacturers include in their lock sets.  Let me know if you have any questions!
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  1. I have a friend who still has these old knobs at her front door. I told her once that she's better off with a a new knob with new lock systems or a deadbolt, and a door handle for security reasons. But she didn't know how to take off the knob. Now that I've found this, I'll definitely direct her to this awesome guide of yours! Thank you so much for posting this.

    Wayne @

    1. Thanks Wayne! I'm so glad I could help!

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