If your car door is squeaking, sagging, or creaking, it’s time to inspect the door hinges. This article explains how to check the condition of your car door hinge, what to do depending on the condition of your car door hinge, and how to fix a squeaky car door by lubricating the hinges.
Why Is My Car Door Creaking, Squeaking, Sagging?
The door hinge allows the car door to open and close smoothly. If your car door is creaking, squeaking, or sagging, it means the door hinge has failed or is beginning to fail.
You can inspect the door hinge to see if it needs to be replaced or just needs some maintenance.
Why Door Hinges Fail
The hinge has a bracket mounted to the body and the door. A pin connects the two metal brackets, and a bushing on the pin prevents the metal from contacting to keep it in good condition over time.
Sometimes the plastic bushings can wear down and crack and leave a space between the pin and the bracket, which can wear down the brackets and the pin over time.
The door hinges can also fail from additional weight being applied to the door, like hanging on the frame during a conversation, or exposure to outside elements like rain, since the door jamb is not a sealed area.
Signs the Car Door Hinge Is Failing
These following symptoms will appear if a car or truck door hinge has failed or is beginning to fail
- Car door is scraping against another part of the vehicle
- Truck or car door has difficulty closing or takes more force to close
- Car door is squeaking or creaking when moved
- Truck or car door is sagging when open
- Rusty or corroded door hinges
- Worn or damaged door latch
If the hinges are in such a bad condition that the door is sagging, it could cause damage to the latch. If the latch isn’t lining up perfectly with the striker on the door, closing the door can damage the striker and the latch.
How to Diagnose a Car Door Hinge
Steps for Diagnosing a Car Door Hinge
- Check the Hinges Condition
Have an assistant look at the top and bottom hinge. Check the hinges for looseness or rust or corrosion
- Lift the Door Up and Down
Lift the door up and down to see how loose or worn the hinges are
- Inspect the Hinges
Have an assistant watch the hinges to see which part of the hinge is causing problems, like the pin or the bracket disconnecting from the door
- Check the Door Latch
Check the latch for wear. Scratches on the door near the latch is an indication it has not been securing properly.
- Lift the Door
If there is wear on the door latch, lift the door and check for movement at the hinges if there are signs of the door latch not connecting properly.
What to Do If Your Car Door Hinge Is in Bad Condition
Replace Both Door Hinges
We recommend replacing both hinges at the same time. If one hinge has wear, the other likely does too. Usually the hinges are loosened or removed when replacing a hinge.
Replace a Bushing, Pin, or the Entire Door Hinge
If the bushing is broken, you may be able to remove the pin, but sometimes the entire hinge needs to be replaced.
If the bushing has been missing for some time and the hinge is damaged, we recommend replacing the entire hinge.
How to Replace the Pins and Bushings on a Car Door Hinge
If just the pins and bushings need to be replaced, check out this video below to see the steps.
How to Fix a Creaking or Squeaking Car Door
Mechanic’s Tip: Regularly cleaning and spraying the hinge with silicone spray can prevent the door hinge from failing and wearing out.
- If the door is creaking or squeaking, check the door hinges for rust or corrosion.
- Remove any corrosion from the door hinge with a wire brush or sandpaper to smoothen the surface.
- Once the surfaces have been cleaned enough to prevent them from contacting each other, spray the hinge with some parts cleaner.
- Once the hinge is dry, lubricate the hinge’s moving areas with some parts cleaner. Silicone spray or lubricant is great for lubricating car door hinges. It will help protect the hinge from rusting.
- Do not try greasing car door hinges, because dirt and debris tends to collect on the hinge, which will mix with the grease and rub against the door hinge.
Fix Your Own Squeaking Car Door
Fix your own squeaking car or truck door and complete many other repairs and diagnostics with 1A Auto’s how-to videos.
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