Door Closer Repairs & Replacement / Installation

In almost all circumstances, no matter what is wrong, a door closer can be adjusted, repaired or replaced altogether within two hours.

The new generation of door closers (from manufacturers like Dorma, Geze , Briton, Arrow , Modric and Jebron) are all sealed units and cannot be repaired. When a door closer is worn or broken it therefore has to be replaced. We can do this on site, usually within a few hours.

Adjustment, Maintenance & Servicing

A door closer should be serviced every 6 months, to check for three things:
– the correct closing action;
– the correct latching action;
– the correct arm position.

All good quality door closures and floor springs (those fitted with hydraulic adjusting screws) can be adjusted in situ to produce the correct closing and latching actions. By this we mean that the door should pull itself shut at the right speed from up to 90 degree angle.

The latching action is what takes over when the angle is down to 10 degrees, exerting a little more force so that the door returns all the way. The door should close slowly into the door frame and then into the latch or lock keep – but in such a manner that if a person had their hand or fingers in the way they would not be injured. If the door slams shut or closes too hard then there is a real risk of broken fingers or a badly damaged hand.

The door closer arm can also become loose and worn over time and will need replacement. We can do this on site. This type of adjustment is carried out with hand tools – so a screwdriver and not an electric drill screwdriver attachment – as it is easy to ruin the fixing screws and bolts.

Common Problems


Over time a door closer can leak oil from one or more of the following places: the seals where the parts are put together; the adjustment screws; and the arm pivot. To understand why oil leaks occur, you need to understand how the closer works.

A door closure, floor spring or transom (overhead) closer is basically a box (called the body) containing a hydraulic coil spring – that is, a metal spring and oil.

When the door opens the spring is ‘coiled’ or squeezed. It wants to uncoil and return to its natural position. This is what pulls the door back to a closed position. However, without the oil the door would gather momentum as it closes and would slam shut (or, in the case of a door that opens both ways, travel past the closed position and be at risk of hitting someone). The correct oil pressure inside the body is what ensures that closing happens at a safe speed.

During opening and closing the oil inside the body is under pressure. This then puts the seals under pressure, and if they are not strong enough they will leak oil. Once this happens then the only solution is to replace the closer.

Prior to 1970 door closer bodies had lids that screwed into place, meaning that parts inside could be replaced or repaired and oil could be topped up. However in all modern closers the body is a sealed unit which, once broken, cannot be repaired.


Once a door closer starts leaking oil the door will then slam closed because there is not enough oil pressure to ensure that it closes slowly. It is not possible to ‘refill’ the closer with oil and the unit must be replaced.

Not closing properly / staying open

If you find that your doors do not close at all then this is very often the long-term result of an oil leak. When a closer is leaking oil and the door is slamming shut for a long period of time then the coil spring will usually break. Another reason could be the arm is worn on the pivot or the fixing bolt has come loose due to lack or regular servicing. As above, the only solution is to replace the closer.