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What You Need to Know When Shopping for Door Handles

Are you considering updating your home?  If you need new door handles, here’s what you may want to know from window and doors expert KJM Group before making your purchase.

Do You Want Door Handles or Door Knobs?

Choosing between handles and knobs is a personal issue. If you prefer pushing down rather than a turning movement, you should go for door handles. Nonetheless, when you seek to replace your existing door knobs or handles, you may not have a choice.

The Lock or Latch Mechanism

Door handles operate a lock or latch. You should decide whether you want your door to lock or only to latch. The easiest way to proceed is to choose the exact type of mechanism you already have. You may only need to replace the handles and keep the existing lock or latch mechanism. If you want a door that locks, you’ll also need to choose the right type of lock, which is going to be a bit more complicated. Depending on the level of security you want, you’ll need to choose a five lever sash lock, a Euro lock or a multipoint lock. All these types are suitable for front doors. However, when it comes to interior doors or bathroom doors, you may want to choose special locks featuring an emergency turn and release set. Once you decide upon all these details, you can take into consideration the type of handles and back plates you need.

Backset of Latch or Lock

Doorknobs call for a deeper backset than door handles. This distance is standardized. In case of door handles, the backset can be 44mm or 56mm. In case of door latches, it has to be either 81mm or 106mm. This is where you need to pay attention, should you be willing to replace your old door handles without changing the existing locks or latches. There won’t be enough room to replace the handles with door knobs. Conversely, if you have doorknobs, you’ll be able to replace them only with doorknobs because of this fixed backset distance. If you need to fit new latches or locks, you should perhaps make use of the services of a good carpenter.

Sprung or Unsprung Door Handles?

Springs have the role of returning the door handle to its initial position after been pushed down. These springs can be placed in the handle or in the latch or lock. Older handle models were unsprung, while most modern ones have springs. You can determine whether your handles have springs or not by pushing them down when not connected to the latch or lock. If they return to horizontal, they are sprung. If not, you should make sure the locks or latches have solid springs, as they will have to do all this work.

Main Types of Door Handles

Deep Backplates

Since the backplates cover the keyhole, these door handles are very popular, due to their elegant look. There are multiple variants of deep backplates. If you need to use this system for a bathroom door, you’ll have the emergency turn and release set into the backplate.

Small Backplates

These handles work pretty much like door knobs. The backplate can be either round or square, and it doesn’t have a functional role. The lock hole has to be covered by a separate escutcheon.

Material and Finish

There are hundreds of different finishes and materials. You should observe your property style and then choose matching door handles. For instance, a cottage door would work best with a black iron finish, while panelled doors would call for brass or plated brass handles. Modern doors would require stainless steel handles in a variant of finish that would add a touch of style to your property.

Last but not least, you should consider your personal preferences when choosing the right material and finish for your door handles or knobs. You are the one who has to like them in the first place, so don’t overlook your preferences in favour of various fashion trends. Fashion comes and goes, but you may not want to replace your handles every year, so pick some you’re going to like for a long time.

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