How to Adjust Cabinet Hinges That Won't Close

Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver

  • White all purpose glue

  • Toothpicks

  • Scissors

You can usually fix you cabinet hinges with a few household items.

If your cabinet doors look a bit crooked, or won't shut properly, you probably have a problem with the hinges. If the cabinet hinges start to loosen, the doors can begin to sag, and you will not be able to fully shut them. If the doors sag for too long, the mounting screws in the hinges may actually begin to pull free from the cabinet, and the door will droop even more. You can usually make some quick adjustments to your hinges to ensure that the doors align properly, and shut all the way.

Repositioning the Door

Step 1

Locate the mounting screws on cabinet hinges.

Step 2

Unscrew the mounting screws just enough to loosen the hinges, but do not remove them.

Step 3

Have a friend hold the cabinet door so that it is level with the cabinet opening. The door should be straight, as it would normally be when you shut the door.

Step 4

Tighten the mounting screws on the hinges while your friend holds the door straight. The hinges and door should both be level, and the door should shut. If the hinges still sag and the door will not shut, then the holes for the mounting screws are stripped, and you should proceed to the next section.

Adding Shims to Stripped Hinge Screw Holes

Step 1

Remove the mounting screws from the cabinet hinges and set the cabinet door aside.

Step 2

Squirt a dab of white all-purpose glue into each of the mounting screw holes.

Step 3

Insert three or four toothpicks into each hole. Space the toothpicks out so they do not all clump together in one spot. Wipe away any extra glue on the cabinet with your finger. Each toothpick should be touching the bottom of the screw hole, and the side of the hole as well. Allow the glue to dry.

Step 4

Cut the tips of the toothpicks off so that they are flush with the surface of the screw hole.

Step 5

Raise the cabinet door back into position. Attach the hinges by screwing the mounting screws into the toothpick-lined screw holes. The toothpicks will provide extra stability, and will prevent the screws and hinges from drooping so you can close the cabinet door.