Schlage Door Latch Won’t Retract? (Solved!)

If you’re on this page, my guess is your Schlage door lock latch got stuck and you’re not sure how to fix it. If that guess was correct, then this post is your go-to resource.

In the next few paragraphs, I’ll walk you through the steps to fix your faulty Schlage door lock latch. Let’s begin!

Schlage Door Latch Won’t Retract

Schlage Door Latch Won’t Retract: How to Solve the Problem

1. Try the Hammer Hack

A quick way to fix a Schlage door lock latch that isn’t retracting is to hit the latch with a hammer several times.

Sounds strange? But it works—in my experience. To do this, keep your door open and then get a hammer and hit the latch several times.

Make sure you don’t hit it so hard to avoid causing other issues. Next, try to turn the thumb turn again to see if it retracts/springs back.

This should fix the latch issue with your Schlage lock. But keep in mind that this solution might be short-term if the internal mechanism is faulty. That is, the latch may get stuck again after some time. See the third troubleshooting step below for details about resolving issues with the internal mechanism of your lock.

2. Check and Fix the Spindle on the Chassis

If the spindle on the chassis of your Schlage lock isn’t aligned and engaged with the latch, chances are the latch won’t retract completely.

So this is one of the possible causes of the sticky latch issue (although the latch may retract a bit but not completely if the issue is caused by an unaligned spindle).

To fix this, try rotating the thumb turn several times to get the spindle back into place. If it still doesn’t work, uninstall the latch and fix the spindle on the chassis properly—make sure it aligns properly with the latch.

If you’re not sure how to uninstall the lock and put the spindle back into place, go here for installation instructions.

3. Check and Replace the Internal Mechanism

As mentioned in the first troubleshooting step, your Schlage lock latch may continue to get stuck if part of the internal mechanism is broken.

So if your lock latch is still not retracting after the above steps, then it’s time to replace the internal mechanism of your lock.

But first, check to see if the internal mechanism isn’t broken but jammed. If jammed, unscrew the doorknob and remove both sides and then unscrew the latch and remove it from the door.

Next, spray some lubricant on the latch and other parts of the lock. Ensure you lubricate all moving parts.

Note: Use only dry powder lubricant as wet lubricant will attract dirt (see recommended lubricant for door locks).

But if the internal mechanism is broken, then you need to get a replacement. Most Schlage lock parts (including the internal mechanism) have a lifetime warranty. So all you need to get a replacement is to call Schlage Customer Service at 1-888-805-9837 and request a replacement. They’ll send you a new mechanism with installation instructions.

This should fix the latch retraction issue with your lock.

4. Get a New Door Knob

More often than not, the above troubleshooting steps (especially ‘the hammer hack’ and replacement of the internal mechanism) should fix the issue with your Schlage door lock latch. But if it doesn’t, then you may have to consider replacing your doorknob.

And if you think something can still be done to fix the latch, then get a locksmith to check it out.

Read our related article on the Best Lubricants for Door Locks. Tricky lock? These lubricants can help!

Wrapping Up

As you can see, fixing a Schlage door lock latch that refuses to retract is something you can do on your own. However, the causes of this issue vary, so you have to try all the troubleshooting steps above to see which of them works for you.

Keep in mind, ‘the hammer hack’ may work for you but the problem may come back again after a short while. If this happens, then the internal mechanism may be jammed or part of it is broken. Go ahead and contact Schlage Customer Service and request a replacement for the internal mechanism.

So that’s it! Hope this article was helpful and you could fix the problem with your Schlage door lock latch.

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