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How To Repair A Sliding Door Yourself at Home

Easy fixes can restore sliding doors to their former functionality. Discover how to repair sliding glass doors effortlessly.


Sliding doors become difficult to open when the wheels are misaligned or the track becomes dirty. Learn how to repair your sliding door and replace a fragile screen with these simple steps.

Tools Required

  • 4-in-1 screwdriver
  • Allen wrench
  • Corded drill
  • Pry bar
  • Rags
  • Screen roller
  • Utility knife

Materials Required

  • Premium replacement screen door
  • Replacement rollers
  • Silicone lubricant

STEP 1 – Tuning up a balky door for sliding glass door repair: Adjust rollers

To begin your sliding glass door adjustment project, utilize a screwdriver or Allen wrench to lift or lower the door on the track. Elevate it sufficiently to clear the track and facilitate smooth rolling. Identify the two adjusting screws located at the bottom of the door (either on the face or edge) and remove the trim caps covering them. If one side appears lower, adjust it until the door sits evenly on the track (refer to Photo 1). If the door continues to stick, turn both screws a quarter turn to raise the entire door. Then, slide the door just short of the jamb and ensure that the gap is uniform.

STEP 2 – Remove stop molding

Detach the screws securing the stop molding. Score the paint or varnish line on the room side of the stop molding to ensure it can be cleanly pulled off. If the door still fails to glide smoothly, you’ll need to remove the door and inspect the rollers. This task may require assistance as the door is heavy. Unscrew the stop molding on the inside of the jamb (refer to Photo 2). Ensure you hold the door in place once the stop is removed to prevent it from falling in, which would necessitate a more extensive repair.

STEP 3 – Lift the door out

Grasp the door by its edges and gently tilt it about a foot into the room. Lift it up and remove it from the track one edge at a time. Tilt the door backward (refer to Photo 3) and place it on sawhorses. Proceed to inspect the rollers for any issues.

STEP 4 – Replace The Roller

If the rollers, also known as sliding glass door wheels, are clogged with dirt and debris, thoroughly clean them and apply a few drops of lubricant to see if they rotate freely. However, if the rollers are worn, cracked, or bent, remove them (refer to Photo 4) and replace them with a new set. Unscrew and pry out the screws holding the roller in place, then carefully remove it using a screwdriver. Clean or replace the rollers accordingly.

STEP 5 – Replacement rollers: how to replace sliding glass door rollers

You can find new rollers for repairing sliding doors from door manufacturers or online suppliers, even for older models.

Years of exposure to dirt, weather elements, and frequent use can cause sliding doors to stick. Here’s how to repair your sliding door and restore its smooth functionality. Sliding glass door repair will effectively address the issue.

Start by thoroughly cleaning the track. Use a stiff brush and soapy water to scrub away any accumulated dirt and grime. If the door still doesn’t slide smoothly, the rollers underneath may require adjustment or replacement.

Rollers and other door parts for repairing sliding doors can be ordered from lumberyards, home centers, or online retailers. Look for the door manufacturer’s name on the door’s edge or the hardware manufacturer’s name on the roller.

STEP 6 – Replace a Balky Sliding Screen Door

Many sliding doors are equipped with low-quality sliding screen doors. These screens often require frequent adjustments, and their wheels are prone to breaking. If you’re tired of dealing with these issues or if someone has inadvertently damaged the screen, consider upgrading to a premium door.

Premium screen doors are typically crafted from extruded aluminum, offering superior durability compared to cheaper rolled aluminum styles. They feature thicker metal and extremely rigid corners, ensuring long-lasting performance. Additionally, high-quality wheels facilitate smoother sliding. Despite their enhanced features, premium screen doors are relatively affordable, typically costing around $120, only slightly more than original replacement versions.

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