Builder's Corner: Replacing Knobs with Levers

2013-10-19T10:15:00Z Builder's Corner: Replacing Knobs with LeversMichelle Krueger Times Correspondent
October 19, 2013 10:15 am  • 

Who knew? Simply changing out your doorknobs can make a big difference in style and function. Overall, a unified selection of door hardware can change the feel of a home in an understated way.

While choosing the right door hardware for the job is important – like installing passage or privacy knobs on interior doors – you can make a big statement throughout your home by making a concerted effort to update it when you add new fixtures, appliances or paint color.

Choices are abundant and virtually only limited by budget.

Ranging from traditional knobs with or without locks to lever handles, which have been a top choice in Europe and are earning their stripes here in the U.S. thanks to their ease of use – no grasping or twisting to operate – you can adorn any selection with simple to ornate single-plate or dual-plate rosettes as needed or desired.

While knobs offer more choices than levers – cut-glass and ceramic for example – the growing popularity of levers has resulted in expanded offerings with many design choices from modern and traditional to contemporary in a variety of finishes in brass, silver or dark tones that complement any décor.

With accessible, universally-designed homes becoming a mainstay in today’s housing market, lever handles are a great choice. Not only do they make entering a home with your hands full easier for all ages, they cater to anyone with limited hand or arm strength. Plus, since they do not require twisting, they comply with the requirements and guidelines of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) which can be a plus when selling.

Some drawbacks of levers to keep in mind include the fact that levers must match the orientation of the door, while doorknobs can easily be interchanged. They are not easy to child-proof, and they can catch the edges of clothing. However, most people find the benefits far outweigh all of these once they opt for levers.

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