How to Fix a Broken Dresser Drawer

In a jam? Dresser drawers take a lot of abuse. Humidity, slamming and over-stuffing can cause their runners to stick and bottoms to warp and fall out. The frustrating daily tugs and jimmying can make drawer pulling a hair-pulling experience. Wooden dresser drawers sometimes require maintenance, but simple fixes can take the aggravation out of opening your dresser drawers.

Repairing a Drawer Bottom

  1. Remove the drawer from the dresser. Disassemble the drawer by sliding the bottom piece out with a pry bar. If the bottom piece sets into a groove, you will have to remove the back of the drawer to replace the bottom. Pull out nails with nail puller.

  2. Take out the old bottom of the drawer. If the only problem with the bottom is warping, flip the bottom over and slide it back into place. Nail.

  3. Use the old bottom as a template to cut a new bottom piece if the old piece is not salvageable. Slide new bottom into place.

  4. Rack drawer, applying pressure at opposite corners, until the diagonal measurements are equal in length. Nail. Replace the back of the drawer if removal was required.

  5. Lubricate runners with paraffin wax.

Repairing Unsquare Joints

  1. Remove the drawer from the dresser. Disassemble the drawer by carefully knocking it apart with a hammer and block, or wooden mallet. Remove nails with a nail puller.

  2. Remove old glue residue. Re-glue and reassemble the drawer.

  3. Clamp pieces in place for a minimum of two hours.

  4. Mid-way through clamping time, measure diagonal measurements from opposite corners to ensure drawer is square. Repeat after two hours. Adjust clamping if necessary. Nail.

  5. Lubricate the runners with paraffin wax.

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