Storm door closer piston isn't holding to door properly


The piston that closes my storm door is slipping.
The problem is on the side that attaches to the door. There is a bracket that screws to the door. It's a standard part; it has openings so that it can be screwed into the door in various positions. The problem is that the two screws holding this bracket in place don't "bite" tightly into the door. I can pretty much push them in or pull them out by hand, and if I use a screwdriver, they just spin and spin and spin. So, not screwed tightly to the door, this bracket just slips when the door closes, and the door doesn't get pulled tightly shut.
http://www.naturalhandyman.com/iip/i/closeradjust.jpg by the way has a photo of what I am talking about when I say "bracket" - that part on the right with 5-6 overlapping holes and the screw in the fourth hole from the left.
As my ignorant eyes see it, I have these options:
1. Get slightly larger (wider) screws, enabling a firmer "bite" in the existing holes. Eliminates having to drill even more holes in door - don't want it looking like Bonnie and Clyde car after all...
2. Since the bracket has several places where screws may go, just drill a new hole in the door, same approximate real estate in the door, and leave the bracket in the same position, just held down with a different screw position.
3. Move the bracket a bit, drill new holes, use same old screws. This may be an attractive option, because even though I have the piston adjusted for the least resistance, the door doesn't always close all the way. If I picked this option, would I move the bracket closer to the hinges, or farther from the hinges/closer to the open part of the door?
Comments or suggestions?
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trader-of-some-jacks wrote: ...

...
Choose one of the above...
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trader-of-some-jacks wrote:

I can't tell from the photo, but is it possible that the bracket is in the wrong place? What you say at number 3 above about the door never closing all the way seems to support the wrong position theory.
My bracket is about in the middle of a 36" storm door and the door closes smoothly, but it took a little work to set it right.
Why did those holes get too large to start with?
Poor screwing skills on your part (sorry couldn't resist) or maybe the wrong position of the bracket puts a stress on the arm and the screws?
A door that is not plumb could present the same symptoms.
If any or all of this makes sense I would:
a) go with 3. - plus fill the old holes with proper material and repaint the door.
b) or if the brackets are at the right distance you may have just to work on the adjustment, fill the holes and re-use the same screws.
c) if the door is not plumb, call a handy man and let him earn his wage. Could be a mortifying experience, but make sure to look at what he's doing and how. If the guy is any good, you will be glad you spent the money.
Good luck
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The door closes correctly 90% of the time. Sometimes there just wasn't enough "oomph" to close it though.

No ideas. None. Possibly, the previous door hardware had larger screws. I just drilled new holes, visibly smaller, and the screws went in nice and tight. Hmm, it's a vinyl door - could the vinyl's softness be a reason?

What kind of "proper material" is there? I can't imagine anything that would fill the holes strongly enough to hold screws tightly enough against the force of the piston.
The door does close tightly now, although I wish I'd get a little more resistance from the piston (that is, have the door "bounce" on the piston once instead of just slamming shut).
My ineptitude at fixing things immunizes me against any mortifying experience asking for help. Believe me.
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trader-of-some-jacks wrote:

So more strength from the piston should help close it all the time.

Could be. Is it all vinyl or just a veneer on some composite board? You might be able to fill the holes with wooden toothpicks or wood fragments and a little carpenter glue

Bondo, if it's all vinyl, Wood filler if it's wood inside. Also at a hardware store you can find, what's their name? These things are little strips of metal with a bunch of holes on them. Their surface reminds of a lemon peel or a cheese grater.
You cut one to size, stick into a damaged hole and reinsert the screw. Guaranteed to never loosen again. Find more and better suggestions here: http://www.findhomeanswers.com/do-it-yourself/320-2-Do-It-Yourself.html
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"trader-of-some-jacks" wrote

Humm, something still not tight there. Could the piston be bad now?

Smile, thank you for the grins! I feel the same all too often as do most here when approaching something they are not experienced with. Then again, since I'm a girl, I never minded asking a guy 'how do I fix this thingamajiggie'. Heck, sometimes he even buys me dinner while explaining it all ;-)
Yeah, I'm wicked but be at ease, happily since married 23 years now to the same fellow after showing him how to balance a checkbook. ;-) He's still no good at that but we get along very well indeed.
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wrote:

The surest way to get the bracket secured is with through bolts. Get some #8 or #10 machine screws (with decorative heads if you're fussy) and drill clear through the door. Run the screws from the outside through the holes, install the bracket inside with washers and nuts well tightened and you're done. Have a look at some similar installations at a store, friends house, whatever, to get an idea of where the bracket location ought to be, in case you are concerned that it may not have been correctly located originally. Of course, if it worked right before, you won't have that problem. If the appearance of the machine screws on the outside of the door bothers you, dab a spot of paint on the screw heads. In a few days they won't be obvious to you.
Joe
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