Types of Door Hinges Available

You never get a second chance to make a first impression. When guests enter your home or business, the first thing they walk through is the door. One important component that’s often overlooked when designing all types of doors are the door hinges.

types of door hinges

There are a variety of hinges available and what you choose will have an impact on how efficiently your door functions and looks.

Before investing in hinges, there are certain things you need to know. For example, what type of door are you dealing with, which direction do you want the door to open, how large should the hinges be, how many are there and are there any other features to include in the design?

Hinges provide a flexible point allowing the door to swing in one or two directions, therefore the option you choose needs to be able to support the weight of the door.

Understanding the parts of a door hinge, the sizes and materials in which they come and which best fits your needs will benefit you and your home in the long run.

Parts of a Door Hinge

Leaf – Also known as the wing, it’s the flat portion of the hinge that gets screwed into the door and frame.

Knuckle – This is the cylindrical middle part where the leaves meet, also the part that allows the door to move.

Pin – A rod that slides into the knuckle to keep the two leaves together. Removing the pin can also remove the door slab from the frame.

Sleeves – The round pieces that make up the knuckle that hold the pin in place.

Interior Door Hinges

Double Action Spring – Double action spring door hinges are best used for kitchen and dining room doors because they cannot handle the weight of a steel door. Swing and sway, saloon and café doors are perfect examples of double action hinges because they can swing in either direction. With two cylinders meeting a square leaf, they’re extremely different than any other hinge.

Butterfly Hinge – These hinges cannot lift the weight of heavy exterior doors. They’re given their name from their decorative design and will give your doors a liveliness that typical hinges lack.

Bi-Fold Hinge – This type of hinge offers multiple leaves that are different lengths and has several pivot points that allow the door to travel further.

Exterior Door Hinges

Exterior door hinges need to be durable and secure to survive time, weather conditions and intruders. A steel door can’t keep your home safe if the hinges are weak and rusted.

types of exterior door hinges

Butt Hinge

Butt hinges are one of the most common door hinges – especially for entry doors because they’re designed to support a lot of weight. Composed of two identical leaves, one attached to the moving component and one on the fixed component, and both attached by the knuckle allowing the door to open.

There are three typical types of butt hinges available: lift-joint, rising and ball bearing. Lift-joint butt hinges make it easy to separate the door slab from the frame, rising butt hinges are made for uneven floors and ball bearing butt hinges are made for heavier doors.

Flush Hinge

Durable, but small, these hinges are designed to have one leaf nestle into the other when the door is closed in order to take up as little space as possible.

Ball Bearing Hinge

Built for heavier and wider doors, these hinges are the most durable of them all. The ball bearing is placed between two knuckles, and permanently lubricated, to help reduce friction.

Case Hinge

The only difference between case hinges and butt hinges are the designs. Case hinges can be found in more decorative designs with many different shapes and sizes available.

Hospital Hinge

This hinge is shorter than a butt hinge and has a rounded, machined knuckle.

They have one leaf that’s installed into the door frame and the other that’s attached to the door. They meet at the rounded knuckle allowing the door to function.

Strap Hinge/Gate Hinge

These hinges are the shortest with the longest leaf. They will give your door a unique look, but the long leaf will also give your door a lot more support.

Olive Knuckle Hinge

When the door is open, you’ll see the H shape. When the door is closed, you only see a knuckle. This design is simple, durable and incomparable.

Pivot Hinge

Pivot hinges look like olive knuckle hinges but are made for taller doors because they pivot when they’re opened. Taller doors need this assistance to keep them aligned.

Heavy Duty Hinge

These come in any hinge style, but are stronger than their normal counterpart. They’re built for heavier doors that are used more frequently.

Other Types of Door Hinges

Concealed Hinge

Also known as invisible hinges, these help you show off the design of your door.

The bracket is installed into a recess in the door and the pivot allows it to open at ninety-degrees. Barrell hinges and soss hinges are common types on concealed hinges.


Often found on larger doors such as garage doors and gates, these hinges add structural integrity and strength.

Knife Hinge

These are scissor shaped hinges found on the sides of toolboxes and other doors that open upwards.

Take Apart Hinge

When doors need to be moved often, take apart hinges allow you to remove your door with ease.

These hinges are made with one leave and a pin. When the pin is removed, the door comes off the hinges.

It’s Important to Know the Types of Door Hinges

The amount of types of door hinges may seem endless any you don’t know which to pick. Their style and functionality have a huge effect on the overall appearance and performance.

Door hinges are one of the most essential parts of home architecture. Without them, opening any type of door would be nearly impossible.

If you need a replacement door for your home, get a free quote from Feldco – Green Bay’s exterior door experts. We offer a wide variety of styles including entry, storm and patio doors. There are also many customization options to create the door of your dreams.

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