Soft close drawers are popularly known as automatic closing drawers or self-closing drawers that retract back into their positions with a slight push. But when the drawer gets stuck or doesn’t retract as it should, you probably need to do some adjustments to fix it.
To adjust a soft closing drawer, you need to remove it first. Then, clean the metal slides to get rid of debris or other particles that may hinder inside those. If your drawer tilts at some angle, adjust its tabs accordingly.
You also need to reposition the drawer dampers into places. If the soft close drawer slams, shut the drawer rather than soft closing. In case, the piston on the dampers is damaged it may need to be replaced.
This article will discuss how to fix a soft close drawer that slams in detail. Keep on reading if you need to know how to adjust an automatic closing drawer.
How to Fix A Soft Close Drawer That Slams?
Fixing an automatic closing drawer is a DIY project which takes no longer than an hour. You can fix a soft close drawer easily by following the steps I’ll be discussing below:
1. Check If the Drawer Tilts
The first step to adjust a soft close drawer is determining if it tilts and if yes, in which direction. The process is simple and easy as you can see in which direction the drawer is leaning.
If the drawer leans forward, the runners at the back are raised that must be lowered to bring the correct alignment. If the drawer leans in any of the sides, the runners in opposite directions are raised that needs to be lowered.
Again, if the drawer gets stuck always while removing, the slides should be adjusted outwards.
2. Remove the Drawer
Once you find out if there’s an adjustment that needs to be done, make sure to remove the drawer for starting the adjustment process.
It also is important to ensure that you’re not damaging the drawer, runners, or lever. It also gives you enough space to clearly observe where’s the problem.
The direction of the removal of the drawer depends on the position of the runners and slides within the drawer.
If the runners are located below the cabinet, you need to pull the drawer out and raise it at the same time. However, don’t pull the drawer so hard which may lead to permanent damage to the system.
3. Clean the Soft-Close Metal Slides
Soft closing metal slides slow down the drawer as it closes to make sure it doesn’t slam.
If you see the drawer is dragging or struggling while coming out, chances are, debris or particles are stuck within the slides.
You should carefully check if there’s any presence of debris or particles. Take a wet cloth to wipe out all particles and later on use a dry cloth to dry them completely so that rust doesn’t grow.
You can also utilize a pressurized air pump to suck the debris.
If you want to find how to add metal slides to drawers, you can click here.
4. Adjust the Tabs
Now depending on whether the drawer tilts in any direction or not, you have to adjust the tabs. The adjustment tabs are located at the bottom of the box and they help slide in and out of the cabinet.
For example, if you need to raise the front side of the drawer, simply pull the adjustment towards the back. And, if you need to raise the backside of the drawer box, push the tabs forward.
5. Adjust the Drawer Dampers
Drawer dampers are located at the back of the cabinet. In order to change the tilt, bring out the cabinet box to adjust the tilt tab located at the back of the cabinet slides.
When you move the tab, you will find a mounting projection that moves with the tab as you move it gradually. When the projection goes up, it raises the back part of the drawer box.
By adjusting the tilting tabs, you can adjust the cabinet from left to right and from front to back as well to get the optimum level.
If the drawer is made of wood, especially hardwood, chances are it absorbs water from the air. This makes the drawer slide out of the square because of expansion and shrinkage.
If you see anything like this after removing the cabinet box, it would be best to call in a professional contractor rather than trying and failing with the slides.
6. Determine the Fitting
Now it is time to determine whether the drawer box slides in and out softly which is it meant for. place the drawer in its original position and check whether it is closing quietly.
If it doesn’t still, then you need further adjustments. Repeat the process until the box is completely aligned.
Even if after trying several times, if the problem doesn’t disappear, it means the slides or tabs are damaged greatly. If this is the case, you need to replace them with new parts.
Fixing a soft close drawer may be a process of trial and error. Keep your patience while adjusting all of the runners. Most runners have oval-shaped holes. If you find the cabinet was poorly built, add a wooden shim between the runner and the drawer.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
When you follow a wrong installation guide or if the drawer was built out of square, the soft close drawer slams shut. This results in inappropriate closing of the drawer. You can adjust this type of problem with the help of a screwdriver. Sometimes, you may need expert support if the problem is severe.
If your drawer is damaged, loose, or doesn’t angle properly, it seems to slide back open immediately after closing. Troubleshooting drawer slides are rather simple. Remove the drawer box from the cabinet and inspect the slides. Replace the screws that are missing and tight them with a screwdriver.
To lubricate a self closing drawer, pull it out from the box. Use a wet cloth to wipe out the area so that it would be clean to rub lubricant. Then, apply lubricant to the runners. Clean up the mess before putting the drawer back on the runners.
You need to lubricant ball-bearing drawer slides as well. See how to fix drawer slides with ball bearings?
Fixing a self closing drawer mechanism is simple and easy. In this article, I tried to discuss one of the soft closing drawer problems, specifically how to fix a soft close drawer that slams.
However, there’re lots of questions I get regarding the automatic closing drawer. For example, can you add soft close to existing drawers? Hope you liked this. Thanks for reading up to this.