What You Need To Know About A Lock Stuck Latch That Won’t Retract

Locked into or out of your house because of a stuck door lock latch that would not retract? Well, this article introduces some ways to for this problem. But first of all we are going to look at the possible reasons why a door latch won’t retract and some DIY techniques to work on it.

What Is A Non-Retracting Latch Or Your Lock Stuck Latch Won’t Retract?

Initially when knew, one does not need to turn the knob so that the latch retracts; the system works automatically and you will see the latch retract when it hits the plate on the frame of the door as you push the door to shut. However with time door knobs and locks, just like all other machines, wear out and become problematic as time passes. This is manifested through the failures of the door to lock properly or open quickly when needed leading to a dysfunctional needed lock system. Here are the reasons why a latch may fail to retract and how to fix it.

The Latch Is Stuck In The Strike Hole

When the latch falls completely into the strike hole and gets stuck in there the door won’t budge an inch as the deadlatch system fails to work. The deadlatch operates by letting only the latch fall into the strike hole and not the deadlatch plunger. This ensures that the plunger can pull back the latch from the opening when you turn the knob, but if the plunger is jammed then the latch gets stuck in the strike opening. Fix this by: use lubricants to reduce friction. Move the strike plate towards the exterior and:

• Close both the door and the knob handle simultaneously.

• Try lifting the door off the ground a little as you open it.

• Replace the old strike with a flexible strike that has a smooth surface.

The Latch Is Completely Detached From The Knob

When the mechanism that transfers turning power from the knob to the deadlatch is broken then force won’t be applied on the latch. This is usually the case when your key turns in a 360 degrees with so much ease because power is not being transmitted.

• Fix by: completely picking the knob off the door using screwdrivers and fix the latch or get a new one.

A Broken Latch

A broken latch will definitely lead to a stuck locking system as the springs inside the system fail to attain their mechanical function. Failure of the spring laden machinery on the latch to start leads to a jammed locking system.

• This is fixed by getting a new latch.


When it comes to a lock stuck latch won’t retract, friction holds everything tight keeping the hangar on the catchplate from forcing the latch back into the door. Causes of friction are worn out surfaces and over tightened screws. Over tightening affects the spring loaded mechanism inside the knob backplate.

• Make use of silicone jelly, petroleum and graphite powders to lubricate the springs. Also apply lubricants on the space between the door and the frame to reduce resistance.

• Apply a little pressure from different positions as you open the door.

• Try to loosen the screws.

Always employ the services of locksmiths near you in case of an emergency as they have the experience of dealing with different lock types and their proficiency will help you get inside your house sooner.

What You Need To Know About A Lock Stuck Latch That Won’t Retract