How To Frame a Sliding Glass Door
A sliding glass door is a great way to bring light into your home and provide easy access to your outdoor space. However, if yours are looking a bit old and tired, they can start to let the side down in terms of both visual appeal and performance. Ideas for sliding glass doors include lots of ways to dress or decorate sliding glass doors to refresh their look, but these simple touches may not always be enough.
If you’re looking to upgrade an existing door or install a brand new one, it’s important to know what the project involves before you set about doing it yourself. In this guide to how to frame a sliding glass door, we’ll discuss the tools you need when installing a sliding door and frame, the steps involved in framing and installing a sliding door, and some tips to help your door last longer.
What Do I Need To Frame a Sliding Door
Before we go through the steps for how to frame a sliding glass door, it’s important to gather all the tools and materials you’ll need. Here’s a checklist:
•Screws and nails
•Sliding door hardware kit
What If I Need To Remove an Old Sliding Glass Door First?
If you’re replacing an existing sliding glass door, you’ll need to remove it first.
Start by removing the sliding panel. Loosen the screws at the bottom of the door, on both the left and right sides (they may be covered by caps). Slide the door open slightly, then lift straight up and remove the bottom of the door from the track. You can then pull the whole panel towards you, out of the frame.
Next, you’ll need to know how to remove a sliding glass door frame. Simply remove the screws or nails holding the door jamb and fixed panel in place. If the door jamb is secured with adhesive, use a chisel to carefully remove it.
The Steps to Installing a Glass Sliding Door
With the old door removed, you’re ready to start installing your new frame and door. Here are the steps to follow for how to frame a sliding glass door when fitting a new door in your home:
Step 1: Measure the Opening
Measure the height and width of the door opening to determine the size of frame and door required. The frame should fit snugly in the opening, so take your measurements carefully. Find out more about the standard width and standard height for sliding glass doors to check whether you need doors that are custom made.
Step 2: Check the Level
Use a spirit level to check whether your opening is square. If the existing framework is square, level and in good condition, you don’t necessarily need to replace it. If not, you will need to fix or replace the frame before installing your new sliding doors.
Step 3: Install the Jambs
Install the jambs in the door opening, making sure they are level and plumb. Use the spirit level to check as you go.
Step 4: Install the Track
Install the track for the sliding door, following the instructions in your hardware kit. Usually, this means an equal section of track on each side of the centre point of the door. Make sure the track is level and securely fastened to the frame using a drill and screws.
Step 5: Install the Rollers
Install the rollers to the base of the sliding door, following the instructions in your hardware kit. It’s important to do this before putting the sliding door in place, but keep the rollers loosely attached until the door is on the track.
Step 6: Install the Door
Lift the glass sliding door and carefully place it onto the track, making sure it is level and square. It’s a good idea to have someone on hand to help you with this! Use the hardware provided in your kit to secure the door in place. Adjust and tighten the rollers to get the door in the correct position and rolling smoothly. For a more detailed guide, learn how to get a sliding door back on track.
Step 7: Finishing Touches
You can now finish your doors and frame in the paint or stain of your choice, and install things like handles and door stoppers.
If you don’t feel confident doing this yourself, or if the job is more complex and you need someone who knows how to build a frame for a sliding glass door, it’s worth calling in a professional sliding door installer.
How Can I Make My Sliding Door Last Longer?
With your new sliding glass door installed, there are a few things you can do to help it last longer and continue to function at its best. Here are some of our tips for ongoing care and maintenance:
Keep the Track Clean and Free of Debris:
Dirt and debris can accumulate in the track, causing the door to stick and wear on the rollers. Regularly clean the track and remove any debris to keep the door moving smoothly.
Lubricate the Rollers:
The rollers are an important part of the door’s mechanism, and regular lubrication will help them move smoothly and reduce wear. Use a silicone-based lubricant specifically designed for door rollers.
Tighten Loose Screws:
Over time, screws can come loose, causing the door to sag or not close properly. Check the screws regularly and tighten any that have become loose.
Adjust the Door’s Height:
If the door is not closing properly, it may be because it has settled or shifted slightly. You can adjust the height of the door by loosening the screws on the rollers and raising or lowering the door to the correct height.
Replace Worn Rollers:
If the rollers are worn or damaged, they will cause the door to stick and wear on the track. Replace the rollers with new ones to maintain a smooth slide.
Replace the Track:
If the track is damaged or warped, the door can get jammed or not close properly. Check the track regularly and replace if needed.
Make sure the door is installed correctly and securely to begin with. Improper installation can lead to problems with the door’s operation and can shorten its lifespan.
Taking care of your sliding doors will not only improve their performance and extend their longevity, but this is also an important factor in keeping your doors looking their best. Find out more about how to make sliding glass doors look better.
Would You Prefer a Professional Handle the Installation?
Now that you know the steps for how to frame a sliding glass door, you can make an informed decision about whether this is a project that you can take on yourself. If you’re unsure, it’s always best to hire a professional to install your doors to get the best results.
At Doors Plus, we have sliding doors that are made to measure, and we can deliver and install them for you – no fuss. Visit your nearest showroom to discover our full range of materials, styles and finishes, and to get a better idea about the cost of sliding doors, including installation.