3 Easy Ways To Make Your Sliding Glass Door Open Smoothly Screen reader support enabled.

Less sticking, more sliding...

Sliding doors are more than just doors. They are your spacious window onto the world, whether that’s a patio filled with garden furniture, a mature garden full of flowers, trees and wild grass or something in between. That’s what we love about our minimal sliding doors. They brighten your home up in a whole new way, connecting your cosy living space to the great outdoors whether they’re open or closed. And more often than not, they’re the biggest window in your home, while also acting as an access door as you soak up the summer sun, the sizzling sound of your BBQ and the smell of sun cream. 

But with all of that opening and closing, sliding glass doors can become a little prone to everyday wear and tear, while the track and weatherstipping can be exposed to elements. That’s why your door might have become a little more difficult to slide open and close. In more extreme cases, your door might have stopped sliding altogether. 

Thankfully, that’s where the bad news stops because repairing your sliding door only requires a few standard tools, a couple of basic materials and a friend to help you remove the door -- and then put it back again. 

And in that spirit, here are 3 simple steps to help you get your sliding glass door to stop sticking and start running smoothly again:

What You Will Need

  • 1 x toothbrush or wire brush

  • 1 x WD-40 (or another silicone-based lubricant)

  • 1 x steak Knife (trust us!)

  • 1 x vacuum cleaner

  • 1 x kitchen roll

  • 2 x screwdrivers (1 x Phillips and 1 x flathead)

Stage 1: Clean the door track of your sliding glass doors

Almost every variety of sliding glass doors have tracks that act as a guide for your door to go back and forth by allowing the roller wheels at the bottom to run smoothly. Of course, as with everything, your sliding glass door track will accumulate dirt, dust, grime and possibly bits of Lego over time. This sort of normal debris is usually the reason your sliding glass door has become a lot harder to open and close. 

To clear this debris, use a toothbrush (or wire brush) to gently clean the inside of your sliding door track. You may find a combination of both brushes is most effective, starting with a toothbrush to get the looser pieces of dust and dirt out, before using a wire brush to remove the tougher bits. 

Once you’ve done this and the dirt has either been cleared from the track or loosened up, use your vacuum cleaner to give the track another clean and remove the last pieces of debris. 


Stage 2: Lubricate your sliding glass door track for a smoother ride

With your sliding door track now free of dust and debris, it’s time to lubricate it with some WD-40 (or another silicone-based lubricant) to stop your door from sticking. The most efficient way to do this is to attach the straw nozzle and spray the entire track from both sides.

The reason we recommend a silicone-based lubricant is simple: it lubricates, waterproofs, dries quickly, protects both metal and non-metal surfaces and, most importantly, doesn’t attract dirt. Just make sure you wipe up any spray that doesn’t go in the tracks because it can very quickly create a slippery surface.

Stage 3: Adjust your sliding glass door rollers for a smoother experience

Not many people know this, but most standard sliding glass doors are fitted with a series of adjustable rollers that help your doors slide back and forth on the track. To adjust these rollers, you need to locate the adjusting screws, which are almost always concealed on the ends of your sliding doors, towards the bottom, in little holes covered in plastic plugs. 

To access these adjusting screws, either use a flathead screwdriver (or your steak knife) to pry the plugs loose and then tweak each screw. There are normally two sets of adjustable rollers on each side of your sliding glass door, so make sure you adjust each one as needed.

What you will find is each screw adjusts the height of the roller up or down depending on which way you turn it. As such, you have the ability to raise or lower the height of your sliding glass door by as much as 5mm, sometimes more. You will want to play around with each of the roller screws to start with, raising and lowering the rollers until you find the perfect position to ensure your door glides smoothly back and forth. 

Once you’ve found that position, we recommend spraying some WD-40 into each adjustable screw opening to help your sliding glass doors to work better for longer.

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