From Butt Hinges to Continuous Hinges: An Overview of Door Hinge Types

From Butt Hinges to Continuous Hinges: An Overview of Door Hinge Types

Choosing the right door hinge for your project can be a daunting task due to the countless options available on the market. From the traditional butt hinges to the modern continuous door hinges, it can be challenging to determine which door hinge is best suited for your door and style. This blog post will provide a comprehensive overview of the four most common types of door hinges: butt hinges, ball-bearing hinges, spring door hinges, and continuous door hinges. We will delve into each door hinge type's unique features and benefits, so your cabinet and door hardware purchases become simple and easy.

 First Time Buying Door Hinges?

For an introduction to door hinges, read our blog on Everything You Need to Know About Hinges.

Butt Hinges


Butt hinges are made of two plates, called leaves, that are joined by a pin and interlock when the door is shut, with one plate attached to the door frame and the other to the door.


Typically, butt hinges are employed as exterior door hinges where outdoor door hinges are required, such as residential doors, and interior door hinges such as kitchen cabinet hinges, and furniture door hinges.



Butt hinges come in a variety of sizes and finishes to match any door style and can be used for a wide range of applications.

Durable and Long-lasting

Butt Hinges are composed of sturdy materials, like steel or brass, which enables them to withstand heavy usage.

Installation and Maintenance

Butt hinges need some screws and minimal effort for installation, and they are not heavy on the pocket for maintenance.



The knuckles of the butt hinges are visible when the door is closed, which may affect its desired style.

 Motion Range

Butt hinges allow doors to move and open in only one direction.


While the maintenance requirements of butt hinges do not demand a hefty financial investment, they certainly need to be lubricated occasionally to avoid noisy operation.

Ball-Bearing Door Hinges

Ball-bearing door hinges are designed to reduce friction caused by heavy doors. They accomplish this by incorporating lubricated ball bearings that are housed in a cylindrical cavity located between the hinge's knuckles.


Ball-bearing door hinges are manufactured from steel or stainless steel and are designed to be used in products and places expected to have increased wear and tear due to high usage. They are also often used in commercial and industrial spaces where seamless functioning is necessary. 


Smooth Operation

The lubricated bearings in ball-bearing door hinges reduce friction and guarantee a noiseless and smooth operation.


These door hinges are created to withstand heavy use, can support the weight of heavy doors without sagging, and are difficult to tamper with, making them useful for safety purposes.

Low Maintenance

Ball-bearing door hinges require minimal maintenance and do not need to be lubricated as often as other door hinge types, such as butt hinges.



Ball-bearing door hinges can be more expensive than other door hinges types, such as butt hinges, because of their design and the materials used for them.


For someone other than a professional handyman, ball-bearing door hinges can be a bit more difficult to install.

Limited Motion Range

As butt hinges, ball-bearing door hinges also allow doors to swing only in one direction.

Spring Door Hinges

Spring door hinges are a door hinge type that uses a metal spring mechanism to automatically close the door. The spring inside the door hinge is tensioned, which pulls the door closed after it is opened.


Spring door hinges are ideal for doors that need to close automatically, such as in commercial spaces, hospitals, schools, and public restrooms. They can be utilized as both interior and exterior door hinges for entry/exit doors, storm doors, and screen doors.



Spring door hinges are appropriate for busy commercial areas due to their automatic functionality, which saves time and effort.


Spring door hinges are made from high-quality materials such as steel or brass, which makes them strong and durable. They are capable of withstanding heavy use and are known for longevity.


Spring door hinges are available in different sizes, strengths, and finishes and can be used on multiple types of doors depending on their weight and size.



Spring door hinges can produce a loud noise, especially when the door is closed forcefully. This can be a problem for spaces, such as libraries, where quiet is essential.


Spring door hinges have limited adjustability, which means they may not work well with doors that are either too heavy or too light. 


Spring door hinges tend to be more expensive than other door hinge types, like butt hinges. They may also require frequent replacement.

Continuous Door Hinges

Continuous door hinges, also known as piano hinges, are long and narrow hinges that are made of one continuous piece of metal and run along the entire length of the door or frame.


Continuous door hinges are commonly used in commercial settings such as schools, hospitals, and office buildings. They are also used for residential doors such as entry doors, closet doors, and interior doors. Continuous hinges are ideal for doors that need support to withstand heavy use.



Continuous door hinges offer enhanced support to heavy doors or panels by distributing the weight along the entire length of the door hinge.


Continuous door hinges are composed of heavy-duty metal, which makes them extremely durable and long-lasting, even in high-traffic areas.


Continuous door hinges are more secure as they run the entire length of the door, making it tough for intruders to break in. This is a particularly valuable characteristic for areas where security is a top priority, such as banks, government buildings, and schools.



Continuous hinges can be difficult to install, and they demand accurate measurements and alignment. They may require professional installation, which can be costly. 


Continuous hinges are usually more expensive than other door hinge types, such as butt hinges.


Continuous hinges can add weight to the door, which may need extra hardware to support the weight. This can also add to the overall cost of the door installation.

With TDC it is Simple and Easy

Selecting the right door hinge may seem like a daunting task with so many options on the market. However, by taking the time to understand the unique features and benefits of each door hinge type, you can simplify the decision-making process. At TDC, we offer a diverse selection of door hinge types in a variety of styles and finishes, making it easy to find the perfect match for your project. If you have any questions or need assistance selecting the right hinge, feel free to reach out to us, and we will respond to your inquiry within 24 hours.


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