Fix It Yourself and Save
Replace a Doorknob
Time: 10 minutes
What you need: A Phillips screwdriver, a doorknob set (which comes with screws; $20 and up), and a thin nail or paperclip.
How-to: The directions that follow are for doorknobs with hidden screws. See screws on the outside of the knob? You’re in luck: Yours will be even easier to install than the model shown here. Jump down to the note below.
Step 1. Look for a small hole on the outside knob (A). Push a nail (or a paperclip) into it and the inside knob (B) should come off, revealing a faceplate (C) secured by screws. Remove those and the faceplate and the outside knob will come off.
Step 2. Unscrew the latch plate (D) and remove the latch assembly.
Step 3. Insert the new latch, curved side facing the direction in which the door closes. Fasten latch plate with the screws.
Step 4. Position the new faceplate on the inside of the door and the outside knob on the other side. Thread the spindle (the finger-length shaft) through the faceplate and latch and into the knob.
Step 5. Drive the screws through the faceplate and the latch and into the base of the outside knob.
Step 6. Slide the inside knob onto the other end of the spindle. Turn until it clicks into place.
Note: For doorknobs with exposed screws, undo the screws and both knobs will come off. Unscrew the latch plate and remove the latch assembly. Insert the new latch and fasten, as in step 3 above. One knob will have a spindle attached to it. Thread the spindle through the door and latch assembly so it pokes out the other side. Slide the base of the second knob onto the end of the spindle. Fasten with the screws.
A pro charges: $75, plus the cost of a new knob
DIY cost: $20 and up for a new knob
Far from boring, this go-to neutral can take any room to new stylish heights.