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Getting Started


Want to give your door a pick-me-up? Or do you want to make sure that your door hardware is updated to match a new door installation in your home? Whatever your situation, door hardware is an important consideration for any home decorator. The details involved may seem overwhelming, but this guide will walk you through the steps and make sure you have all the information you need to purchase door hardware that will fit your door while looking good.

When you’re choosing the latch for your new door, you will need to know two different things – the type of faceplate you’re looking for and the backset measurement. The backset describes the length of the latch itself. To determine this, start at the edge of the door and measure out to the borehole drilled in your door. This is your backset measurement. For your faceplate, look at the groove cut into the edge of the door for the faceplate. If it has rounded corners, you will need a round corner latch. Similarly, square corners on your groove will need a square corner latch. If there is no groove, you need a drive-in latch that does not come with a faceplate at all. Some of our latches come with adjustable backsets and both faceplates. This can be a simple option, but if you get an adjustable backset, make sure your backset is one of the two most common sizes (23/8” or 23/4”).

Handing is a term used to describe which way a door handle turns. Many handles now are available with adjustable handing, but knowing the handing of your door will keep you from being limited in your shopping. Luckily, it’s relatively easy to figure out. To determine the handing of a door, stand on the outside of the room you are going to enter. For example, if you are entering your house, stand outside the house entirely; if you are considering your bathroom door, stand in the room that connects to the bathroom. Face the door. Notice which side the hinges are on.

Door Swings Inward
Left handing - The hinges are on the left
Right handing - The hinges are on the right

Door Swings Outward
Left hand reverse - The hinges are on the left
Right hand reverse - The hinges are on the right
(Reverse swings are only on mortise handlesets)

That’s all you need to do! Just keep this in mind when shopping for door handles, and you’re ready to go.

Door Thickness
Most interior doors are 13/8 inches thick, while most exterior doors measure 13/4 inches. But what if your door is thicker than these standard measurements? Don’t worry, you’ll just need additional (longer) components to connect the hardware from one side of the door to the other. This is commonly referred to as a thick door kit. Some door hardware manufacturers provide these for free, while others require the customer to make an additional purchase. Contact customer service to determine which one you’ll need for your door hardware.

Center to Center
Center to center is an important measurement when shopping for handlesets. This measurement makes sure that your new Handleset will fit into the holes pre-drilled in the door. To determine this measurement, take a look at the two holes drilled in the side of the door for the deadbolt and the latch. Measure from the center of the top hole to the center of the bottom hole. This is your door’s center to center measurement.

If you’re buying more than one lock, you will need to decide if you want your locks to be keyed alike or different. Locks that are keyed alike will use the same key – different keying requires a different key for each lock. Be aware that keying is not the same across manufacturers – if you order two different locks from two different manufacturers, the keys will probably not match.

When ordering locks from, we will send you two keys for each lock you have. If you order three locks with the same keying, we will send you two keys. However, if you order three locks, each with different keying, you will get a total of six keys, two for each lock. For more information on our keying services, please visit our Keying Services section.

To determine the size door hinges you need, take a look at the grooves that are cut into your door and door frame. You will need to know:

Corner type (Square, 1/4”, 5/8”)

To determine the corner type you have, go back and look at the grooves in your door. If the corners are square, you need a square-corner hinge. If they are curved, take a ruler and look at the top curve. Measure from the beginning of the curve to where the top of the hinge would be if it were square. This number will be either 1/4” or 5/8” – depending on the number, you will want to get hinges that have that measurement.

A 1/4” radius hinge has less of a curve than a 5/8” radius hinge. An easy way to check is to hold up a dime and a quarter to your hinge groove. If the curve is less than the edge dime, you have 1/4" radius hinges. If it is more than the quarter, you should be looking for 5/8” radius hinges.

Interior Packs
When you are purchasing a handleset from, you may be offered an option of choosing the design and finish of the interior portion of the handleset. This is not an optional piece – the interior pack includes the knob or lever for the inside of the door as well as all the mechanisms to operate the lock itself. Be sure you choose one of the options available if your handleset has an “Interior Handle Style” required option to ensure you get the full handleset for both sides of your door!

Just keep these measurements and options close at hand when you’re shopping, and make sure the hardware you purchase fits the requirements of your door. You will be rewarded with hardware that looks good and fits right the first time!

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