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How to Change a Door Lock with a Handle

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Muhammad Baballe Ahmad, Mehmet Cavas, Sudhir Chitnis, and Zhen-ya Liu.

✓ Verified & Tested Information

Learn how to change a door lock with a handle by following these simple steps. If you need to replace a door lock, you can do it yourself with just a few tools.


Changing a door lock with a handle requires careful preparation and the right tools for the job. Before you start, you need to make sure you have the necessary tools and supplies. This includes a screwdriver, a drill, a tape measure, a new door lock and latch assembly, and a handle set. You should also take the time to carefully measure the distance between the door knob and the door latch, as well as the thickness of the door. Once you have the measurements and supplies, you can begin the process of changing the door lock.

Gather the necessary tools and materials

To ensure you have everything you’ll need on hand before you begin, here is a list of the necessary tools and materials:

– Screwdriver
– Pencil or marker
– Tape measure
– Level (optional)

– New lock set
– Door latch hardware
– Hardware screws or nails (as required)

It is important to confirm the size of your door and the type of lock that is best suited for it. In some cases, the existing door latch will be fine, but if it is too old or damaged then a complete new full lock set must be fitted. A level may also come in handy to make sure your door opens evenly; in some cases, a slight misalignment can cause doors to hang awkwardly. Once everything is correctly measured and ready to be installed, most locksets sent with instructions for proper installation – follow them closely!

Read the manufacturer’s instructions

Before beginning to change the door lock, it is important to first read the manufacturer’s instructions. They may provide advice on how to change a door lock so that it is compatible with the existing handle. The instructions may vary depending on the make and model of your handle and lock. Additionally, many manufacturers offer online support for their products and can provide troubleshooting tips if you’re having difficulty with installation. Understanding how everything works beforehand will help to ensure that your installation goes smoothly.


Removing an old door lock with a handle requires some basic tools and a few simple steps. It is important to be familiar with the type of door lock you are removing, as this will determine the specific tools and steps you will need to take to successfully remove your lock. Let’s get started by seeing what tools and steps you need to take in order to remove a door lock with a handle.

Remove the screws that secure the handle

Once you have located the screws that secure the handle in place, you must remove them. The most common type of screw used is a flat head screw. Carefully unscrew each one using a flat head screwdriver, being careful not to overtighten or strip the threads. Depending on your door hardware, it may also hold smaller screws around the edges to keep it secure. Make sure to remove all of these as well in order for the handle to come off properly. Once all of the screws are removed, carefully pull off the handle and set aside.

Remove the handle

To remove the handle, start by unscrewing the fasteners that secure the handle to the door. Often, these fasteners take a rare screwdriver size, too. To help keep track of each individual fastener, use a container to store the hardware once it has been removed. While unscrewing and removing the screws, use caution if there is any resistance. Forcing is never advised when unscrewing from doors and can often cause damage to your property.

Once all of the screws are taken out of the handle, slowly pull off either side and note how much strength is required. This information can be helpful should anything need to be adjusted during installation. Caution should also be taken while pulling on either side as some old handles may be fragile or breakable over time. Now that both sides are separated from each other, you will see hints of where your current lock system’s main components may be housed in various sections of key plates or by interior levers and pins that secure them into place as needed. Depending on how secure you’d like your new lock system to be – bonus points if you opted for one with multiple abilities such as adjusting settings form two locks types – pay attention to any modifications you may need to make when replacing these components before placing them into their new settings for operational use

Unscrew the mounting plate

Before you can access the inside of the door, you must remove the mounting plate. This is usually a small metal plate that covers or surrounds the screws or bolts at the back of the lock.

In most cases, you will only need a phillips head screwdriver to unscrew this plate. The length and size of the screws may vary depending on your type of lock. However, there should be clear indications as to which type of screwdriver you should use. If needed, consult your manufacturer’s instruction manual for more information about unscrewing your door’s mounting plate.

Once the mounting plate has been removed, you can then proceed with removing it from its frame by simply pulling off its internal components. Make sure to be careful as these locks may contain springs which could cause injury if mishandled – be sure to wear safety goggles when removing these components!


Installing a new door lock with a handle is a straightforward process that doesn’t require a lot of tools. It is important to make sure you have the right type of door lock for your door before attempting the installation. The first step to installing a new door lock is to remove the old one, which involves unscrewing the screws holding the door handle and latch in place. Once the screws have been removed, you can take the door handle and latch off of the door.

Install the new handle

When it comes to installing the new handle, first find the adjustment screw on the lower part of the handle. Use a screwdriver to turn it clockwise for a tighter fit. This will adjust how close or how far away from the door frame your new lock will sit.

Next, fit the handle into place on either side of your door according to the instructions provided by your lock manufacturer and make sure it locks properly when you turn the handle clockwise. Once in place, you may need to tighten up any other screws that came with your new handle set in order to secure it firmly and guarantee a secure closure. Make sure all screws are tight and then test again by closing and opening your door several times. If all screws are done up properly, you should be able to open and close your door with ease and security.

Secure the mounting plate

Once the door handle has been unscrewed and removed, the mounting plate must be inserted into the back of the door panel. Secure the plate in place by tightening two screws from either side of the plate. This step is essential to ensure that the lockset remains attached to the door panel during use. Next, insert the spindle through all three holes in the mounting plate and secure it with a spindle nut. This will hold all of the parts in place when mounting or removing them from the plate. Finally, slide on the adjustable external case that surrounds and covers up all of these parts from view.

Re-attach the handle

Once the new lock is in place, it’s time to re-attach the door handle. As before, start by pushing the rod or rods on the back of the handle through their corresponding holes in the edge of the door. Pull them out as far as they will go, and then use a Philips head screwdriver to tighten up the screws that secure them in place.

If you are working with a handle that requires an Allen key instead of screws (known as a hex screw drive), then you will need an Allen key to secure it into position. Make sure that whatever attachment method you are using is securely tightened before moving on to replace the other parts of your door lock.


Before you start replacing your door lock, it is important to test the new hardware first. This will help you understand how the different components of the lock interact with one another and will ensure that everything is working properly. This is why it is important to test the new door lock before installing it. In this section, we will cover the different ways you can test a door lock with a handle.

Test the new handle to ensure it works properly

Once the new door handle is installed, testing it is necessary to ensure it works properly. Start by unlocking the door from the outside with a key. Close the door and try to lock it while outside of the house. This verifies that the latch engages when you turn the key in the cylinder. Return to inside of the house and check that turning either side of handle unlocks and locks the door as expected. Finally, try using just your fingers to move both sides of handle, making sure neither side gets stuck or does not fully travel in its respective direction. If any problems are encountered during these tests, refer to manufacturer’s instructions for troubleshooting advice or contact a local locksmith for assistance.

Check for any loose screws or other issues

Before you begin work on the door lock, it’s necessary to check for any loose screws or other issues that can affect the installation. Make sure all the existing hardware is firmly in place, including screws on the door jambs and strike plate. If any hardware is loose or missing, you will need to replace it with the appropriate new parts before continuing.

Once all existing hardware is checked and tightened, open the door so that you can access the handle area. Carefully inspect both sides of the handle for damage or wear. Make sure all components are connected securely and tighten if necessary. Any broken parts need to be replaced before continuing with a new lock installation.

To remove an existing handle, turn it over and locate any small screws that hold it to the frame of the door then remove them carefully using a Phillips head screwdriver. With these removed, slide off both handles from their posts so that they are free from the frame of your door before setting them aside in a safe location.

Once you’ve tested and removed any existing hardware, you’re ready to install your new lock with a handle set!

Test the door lock to make sure it’s secure

Once you have installed the door lock with a handle, it’s important to test your work before closing up the door. This can be done easily from the inside and outside of the home, making sure that your door lock is secure.

Testing from inside:
1. Close the door and insert your key into the newly installed keyhole.
2. Twist for a few seconds, making sure that it does not unlock.
3. Withdraw your key, securely close the door and open it back up again using your new handle on the outside of your door. This will ensure that both sides are correctly locked in place.

Testing from outside:
1. Stand on either side of the door with handle facing outwards and attempt to open it without inserting a key. Both sides should remain locked in place so you cannot enter without inserting a key into the newly installed lock or opening with other entry devices like a code panel or keypad device if one has been installed as part of this process too..
2. Insert your new key into its respective hole and twist for few seconds to make sure it works correctly each time you use it; this will help ensure safety for those times when you forget your house keys and need access in an emergency situation!

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