A pocket door is the perfect way to close off a doorway, without the door. Instead of a folding door, the door slab hangs from a series of wheeled pivots running on tracks that hold the door in place and allow it to slide into the pocket versus hanging the door slab from hinges as in a conventional door. This makes the pocket door one of the best choices for areas that need to be closed off, yet have no room for a door.
Typically, closets and pantry entries have been most frequently used for pocket doors. With the many sizes that pocket doors come in, it’s no wonder why so many different rooms now have pocket doors instead of the norm.
Locking mechanisms are typically installed in the same fashion as the regular door handle set, with the exception that a latching lock is inserted between the handle plates and a striker must be attached to the jamb. Proper alignment between the door and the jamb must be achieved by loosening or tightening the pivot bolts on the wheeled track guides above the door slab.
Begin by measuring for the door cut. If you are replacing an already existing handle for a lock, you can skip to the next step once you remove the old handle and a bare cut in the door slab is exposed. Most handles are centered 36″ up from the bottom of the door slab. All though this is typical, it may not be so for your door lock, read the manufactures specifications first.
Most pocket door lock sets come with a template for cutting out the hole. Apply that according to the directions and then drill out a ¼” hole in each corner of the template. Use a jigsaw to cut out the square from the pocket door slab. It’s a good idea to wedge the door with some old rags and have a friend help stabilize it, it gets really shaky. The alternative to that is to remove the door from the pivots and place it on a pair of sawhorses. But I’d rather stick my head in a beehive than to hang a pocket door slab again.
Once the hole is cut to size to accommodate the handle and lock set, attach the lock to one of the handles and place it against the side of the opening. Now attach the other handle to the lock and handle on the other side of the door slab cut. Hand-tighten the provided screw to attach the handles and locks together.
Now extend the latch out to ensure it works correctly. With the latch out, press it into the door to make a mark on the jamb. Use that mark as a center point for a ½” drill bit. Attach the provided metal clip with the two wood screws and test the lock for a fit and adjust as needed until the latch catches and holds.