Pocket Door Privacy: Install a Lock

Lead Image
  • 1-2 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 20-30
What You'll Need
Measuring tape
Strike plate

Your pocket privacy door can be made more private with a key-operated lock. In four steps, you can prepare your pocket privacy door and install the lock.

Step 1 - Mark the Door

Begin by marking the holes you'll need to drill to install the lock mechanism. Exactly where you mark the door will vary with the size of your lock. Generally, begin 36 inches from the base of the door. At that height, mark a spot that is equal to the width of your lock mechanism plus 1/8 inch from the edge of the door. Next, draw a circle centered on that point. The width of the circle should be equal to the width of locking mechanism for your pocket privacy door.

On the edge of the door, again, 36 inches from the bottom of the door, mark the center of the door edge. Next, draw a circle with the center being that mark. The width of the circle should be equal to the width of your latch bolt. The latch bolt is what extends from your pocket privacy door lock to the strike plate in the door jam. Also on the door edge, mark to mortise a space for the plate that will cover the latch plate.

Step 2 - Bore the Holes

When boring the large hole in the door face, bore halfway through from each side of the door. This will help keep the door from splitting. With the latch bolt hole, also to avoid splitting, be certain to mark the latch bolt hole in the center of the door edge, and begin drilling from the center. Bore holes for all required screws of the lock and latch plate.

Step 3 - Install the Lock

By depressing the latch bolt, place the locking mechanism in the large bored hole. Release to ensure the latch bolt clears the latch bolt hole. Secure the locking mechanism and the latch bolt plate.

Step 4 - Install the Strike Plate

Allow the latch bolt to contact the center of the edge of the door jam. Mark and drill a hole in the door jam that is at an equal height and width as the hole drilled for the latch bolt. Place the strike plate over the strike hole, ensure it is plumb to the jam, and mark and drill screw holes. Install the strike plate.