How to Take Apart a Refrigerator Door

Refrigerator doors receive a lot of use and abuse. Sometimes this results in broken handles or dents in the door. When these things happen it is necessary to disassemble the door to make repairs. Removing dents often requires removing the inner door panel. Handle replacements involve removing the handle from the door. Taking apart a refrigerator door completely involves removing the door from the refrigerator. Before disassembling the door, remove all food items from the inner door shelves.

Disconnect the refrigerator power cord from the wall outlet. Although you are not working with any electrical components when disassembling the door, it is a safe practice to turn off the power to the appliance.

Pry off the top hinge cover with a flathead screwdriver. The top hinge is the flat metal bracket on the top of the refrigerator with a pin going into the top edge of the door. Remove the screws securing the top hinge to the refrigerator with a nut driver.

Lift the hinge off the top of the refrigerator. Grab the refrigerator door on both sides with your hands. Lift the door straight up and disengage it from the lower pivot pin. Place the door flat on a cushioned surface with the handle facing you.

Find the screws securing the refrigerator door handle to the door. If there are no visible screws, look for a seam on the door handle. The seam usually indicates a cover is hiding the screws. Push the cover away from the handle. Remove the screws securing the handle with a Phillips-head screwdriver and pull the handle off the door.

Turn the door over so the inner door panel is facing you. Lift the rubber seal with your thumb and find the hex head screws securing the inner door panel. Remove the screws with a nut driver and remove the inner panel from the door. Lift off the metal retainers on top of the door seal and remove the door seal from the door.


If you have a top mount refrigerator, remove the freezer door as above. Remove the centre pivot hinge on which the top of your refrigerator door pivots and remove your refrigerator door. The refrigerator door on a side-by-side has no electrical parts. The dispenser on a side-by-side is on the freezer door.

Things You'll Need

  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Phillips-head screwdriver
  • Nut driver
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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.