How to Make a Screen Door Piston Slow Down at the Beginning of Closing

When your screen door hits you in the ankles as you walk into the house, it is necessary to slow down the closing speed.
Screen doors use a door piston closer much like a storm door. Ideally the door piston should close the door slowly as you release the door and walk into your house. Once the door is six-inches from closing, the closer speeds up slightly to ensure the door latches properly. Making a screen door piston slow down at the beginning of closing might require some adjustment to the mount along with adjusting a piston screw.

Step 1

Close and securely latch the screen door. Turn the adjustment screw on the end of the door piston body a quarter turn clockwise with a Phillips-head screwdriver. The adjustment screw is on the end of the piston body that connects to the door bracket.

Step 2

Open the door fully, and allow it to close on its own. Turn the screw another quarter turn clockwise if it still closes too fast and retest.

Step 3

Swing the door to the half-open position, if the closing speed is still too fast. Slide the hold-open washer over the shaft and against the rear body of the closer to keep the door open.

Step 4

Grab the door piston body with one hand, and pull the pin out of the front piston and door bracket with your free hand. Move the front of the piston to the next hole closest to it on the door bracket and reinsert the holding pin. Gently open the screen door slightly and slide the hold-open washer back against the piston rod jamb bracket.

Step 5

Operate the door and allow it to close on its own. Continue making adjustments to the screw in quarter-turn increments until the door closes at a slower rate and still latches on its own.

Things You Will Need

  • Phillips-head screwdriver

About the Author

Kenneth Crawford is a freelance writer with more than 10 years of experience. His work has appeared in both print and online publications, including "The American Chronicle." Crawford holds an associate degree in business administration from Commonwealth College.