Door Creaks When Opening But It’s Not The Hinges

Are you tired of hearing your door creak every time you open it?

A creaky door can be annoying and disruptive, especially if you are trying to be quiet. While most people assume that a creaky door is caused by the hinges, this is not always the case. In fact, there are several other reasons why your door may be making noise.

One common cause of a creaky door is the door frame itself. Over time, the wood in the frame can warp or shift, causing the door to rub against the frame and make noise.

Another possible cause is the latch or strike plate, which can become misaligned and cause the door to rub against the frame. Additionally, the screws that hold the door in place can become loose, causing the door to shift and make noise.

Door creaks when opening

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Identifying The Issue Of A Creaking Door

If you’re experiencing a creaking sound when opening your door, the issue is likely with the door itself and not the hinges.

There are a few potential causes for a creaky door, including:

  • Loose screws: Over time, the screws that hold the door in place can become loose, causing the door to shift and creak when it’s opened. Check the screws on both the door and the frame to make sure they’re tight.
  • Dry wood: If the wood in your door has become dry, it can cause the door to creak when it’s opened. This is particularly common in older doors or in areas with low humidity. Applying a wood conditioner or lubricant can help to reduce the creaking.
  • Warped door: If your door has become warped, it can cause it to rub against the frame and create a creaking sound. This can happen if the door is exposed to changes in temperature or humidity. In some cases, a warped door may need to be replaced.

Tools and Materials Required To Fix Your Creaky Door

To fix a creaky door that is not caused by the hinges, you will need a few basic tools and materials. Here are the things you will need:


  • Screwdriver: You will need a screwdriver to remove the screws from the door and the door frame.
  • Hammer: You will need a hammer to tap the pins out of the hinges.
  • Tape: You will need some tape to mark the position of the hinges before you remove them.
  • Nail: You will need a nail to tap the pins back into the hinges.


  • Lubricant: You will need a lubricant to apply to the hinges to stop them from creaking (if the issue is with the hinges). Common lubricants include WD-40, silicone spray, and petroleum jelly.
  • Rag: You will need a rag to wipe away any excess lubricant and to clean the hinges before you apply the lubricant.

Once you have gathered all the necessary tools and materials, you can begin your DIY project to fix your creaky door.

How To Fix A Creaky Door That’s Not Caused By The Hinges

If It’s The Hinge Pin

If you’re experiencing creaking or squeaking when opening your door, it’s possible that the issue could be with the hinge pin. Examining the hinge pin is a good place to start when trying to diagnose the problem.

First, locate the hinge pins on your door. These are the metal cylinders that hold the door in place and allow it to pivot when opening and closing. Check for any visible signs of damage, such as rust or bending, that could be causing the creaking.

Next, try tapping the hinge pin lightly with a hammer or screwdriver handle. If the pin moves easily, it may be loose and not properly seated in the hinge. Tightening the screws on the hinge plate can help to secure the pin in place.

If the hinge pin is tight and secure, it may be worth lubricating it with a silicone-based lubricant or white lithium grease. This can help to reduce friction and eliminate any creaking or squeaking.

In some cases, the hinge pin may need to be replaced entirely. This can be done by removing the old pin and replacing it with a new one of the same size and material. It’s important to make sure that the new pin is properly seated in the hinge and tightened securely.

Gold hinge with hinge pin

If It’s Friction and Rubbing

When your door creaks when opening, it could be due to friction and rubbing. Here are some steps you can take to address this issue:

  • Check the hinges: Even if the sound is not coming from the hinges, it’s a good idea to check them for any signs of wear and tear. If you notice any damage, replace the hinges before addressing the creaking noise.
  • Sand the door: If the door is rubbing against the frame, you can sand it down to reduce the friction. Use a fine-grit sandpaper and sand the edges of the door that are rubbing against the frame. Be sure to sand evenly and avoid sanding too much.
  • Use steel wool: Steel wool can also be used to remove any rough spots on the door that are causing friction. Simply rub the steel wool over the affected area until it’s smooth.
  • Lubricate the door: Applying lubricant to the door can also help reduce friction and eliminate creaking sounds. You can use a silicone-based lubricant or a dry lubricant spray. Apply the lubricant to the hinges, door knob, and any other moving parts of the door. Remember, brand new door hinges can also creak.

Lubrication Techniques

If your door creaks when opening, lubrication is often the solution. By lubricating the hinges and other moving parts of your door, you can reduce friction and eliminate annoying creaks.

Here are some techniques to help you lubricate your door effectively:

Use the Right Lubricant

When lubricating your door, it’s important to use the right lubricant. WD-40 is a popular choice, but it’s not always the best option. While it can help to loosen rusted parts and displace moisture, it’s not a long-lasting lubricant.

Instead, consider using white lithium grease or lithium grease. These lubricants are thicker and longer-lasting, making them ideal for door hinges and other moving parts.

Apply Lubricant Carefully

When applying lubricant to your door, it’s important to be careful. Too much lubricant can attract dust and dirt, which can actually make the problem worse. Instead, use a small amount of lubricant and apply it carefully to the hinges and other moving parts. You can use a cloth or a small brush to apply the lubricant evenly.

Consider Petroleum Jelly

Petroleum jelly is another effective lubricant for door hinges. It’s thick and long-lasting, making it ideal for reducing friction and eliminating creaks. To use petroleum jelly, simply apply a small amount to the hinges and other moving parts. You can use a cloth or a small brush to apply it evenly. Be sure to wipe away any excess to prevent dust and dirt buildup.

Try Silicone Spray

Silicone spray is another option for lubricating your door. It’s a lightweight lubricant that’s easy to apply and effective at reducing friction. To use silicone spray, simply spray a small amount onto the hinges and other moving parts. Be sure to wipe away any excess to prevent buildup.

Other Potential Solutions

If the creaking noise persists even after lubricating the hinges, there may be other potential solutions to try. Here are a few options to consider:

Check for Wear and Tear

Over time, the door itself can become worn and may need to be replaced. If the door is old or has been subjected to a lot of use, it may be time to consider replacing it. Alternatively, you may be able to repair the door by filling in any cracks or gaps with wood filler and sanding it down.

Stop the Door from Swinging

If the door swings too much when it is opened or closed, it can cause the creaking noise to occur. To stop the door from swinging, you can install a doorstop. This will prevent the door from swinging too far and causing the creaking noise.

Repaint the Door

If the door is painted, the paint may be causing the creaking noise. This can happen if the paint is too thick or if it has started to crack. To fix this, you can sand down the paint and repaint the door with a thinner coat of paint.

Check the Floor and Roof

If the door is creaking, it may be because the floor or roof is not level. This can cause the door to rub against the frame and create the creaking noise. To fix this, you can use a level to check the floor and roof and make any necessary adjustments.

Tighten the Joints

If the creaking noise is coming from the joints of the door, you can try tightening them. Use a screwdriver to tighten any loose screws or bolts. If the joints are still loose, you can try inserting a cardboard shim to help tighten them.

Clean the Door

Dirt and debris can accumulate on the door and cause it to creak. To fix this, you can clean the door with warm water and soap. Be sure to dry the door thoroughly after cleaning it.

Door Creaks When Opening But It’s Not The Hinges: A Recap

If you have a creaky door that is not caused by the hinges, there are several steps you can take to fix it.

First, try tightening any loose screws on the door and frame. This can often solve the problem quickly and easily. If that doesn’t work, try lubricating the door with a silicone-based lubricant. Apply the lubricant to the hinges, latch, and any other moving parts on the door. Find out how to lubricate a spring loaded hinge here.

If the creaking persists, you may need to replace the weatherstripping around the door. This can help reduce friction and prevent the door from rubbing against the frame. Additionally, you can try adjusting the strike plate on the door frame to ensure that the latch is properly aligned.

It’s important to note that if your door is old or damaged, it may be time to replace it altogether. A new door can not only solve the creaking problem, but also improve the security and energy efficiency of your home.