how to install a sliding patio door

How To Install A Sliding Patio Door
Tools Needed
1 Drill
2 Reciprocating Saw
3 Sliding Door
4 Pry Bar
5 Large Sledge Hammer
6 Level
7 Tape Measure
8 Pencil
9 Drill bits
10 2X4
11 Cement Mix
12 Screws
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Materials Needed
1 Caulk
2 Caulk Gun
3 Hammer
4 Safety Glasses
5 Utility Knife
6 Tigris Bar
7 Magnet
8 Nail Gun
9 Foil Tape
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Total Cost
$100-$200
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Estimated Time
$50-$100
Skill Level: Expert
The total cost and duration may vary when hiring a handyman!

Project Overview

How To Install A Sliding Patio Door

Are you thinking about installing a sliding patio door? It can definitely add a new look to your home and even increase the value in some cases. It is a project however that is very time-consuming. Not only will it take a great deal of time but it is also a project you will want extra helping hands for. If this is your first do-it-yourself project then you need someone with experience who will be able to assist. This project is not at all for newbies. When you have your helper committed to the project you just need to order your sliding door and gather the tools to get started.

Step-By-Step Instructions

1

Ordering The Door

How To Install A Sliding Patio Door

The first thing that you need to do is order the door. If you will be replacing one sliding door with another then you can measure the height and width of your current door to ensure that you get one that fits. If you will be installing sliding doors where there are not currently any then you can choose the size of the door that you want because you will be cutting out an area to place the doors anyway.

When measuring measure the height in three different places as well as the width in three places. This will help you to ensure that the measurements that you are taking are correct. You don't want to get your old sliding door out only to find out that you have to make major changes because you didn't take the appropriate steps to ensure proper size.

2

Removing The Old Door

How To Install A Sliding Patio Door

If you already have a sliding door in place you need to start by removing it. To do this you should take your utility knife and score around the molding where the caulk is. Once the caulk has been removed you can use the pry bar and remove the molding gently. You also need to remove the outside molding.

For the exterior molding, you will likely not be able to slide the crowbar in between the siding and the molding. There is a tool called a Tigris bar. To use this tool you will first take a magnet and run it along the molding until it sticks. Once the magnet sticks you will know there is a screw behind it. Use the Tigris bar and a hammer in the area right where the nail is located. You will break through the molding and reach the nail. Once the nail has been exposed you should pry it out.

You should repeat this step until all the nails in the molding are out. You will then be able to remove the molding. Do this for all three pieces. Once you had removed the molding you will want to take the screen and door off the track. Then use the Tigris bar or drill to remove any screws or nails that are holding the frame of the doors to the frame of the house. After all the nails have been removed you should be able to lift out the frame.

3

Cutting The House For The Doors

How To Install A Sliding Patio Door

If you didn't already have sliding doors you will now be creating the appropriate size opening. Depending on where doors and windows are currently placed, you may have to cut more space out than you need. If this is the case you can frame it in to make it the correct size and center the door just right into the new opening you have created.

You should remove any doors that are currently in the area where you will be placing the new sliding patio door. If there are windows in the way then you will need to remove them as well. Once everything is out of the way you can measure. You want to use a straight edge and you want to make sure that you cut the correct height and width for the door. Use a pencil to draw a guideline all the way around. Once the guideline has been drawn you can use the saw and start removing the wall. You may want to do this is smaller sections instead of trying to remove it all at one time. You are also likely going to need an extra set of hands here.

Before cutting remember the importance of wear safety goggles, as you don't want to accidentally damage your eyes. You also need to be aware of where the electrical wiring is ran in your walls, you don't want to accidently cut threw wiring. Some people might even want to wear a dust mask to prevent the inhalation of any dust particles that results from cutting.

4

Flat And Level

How To Install A Sliding Patio Door

Before installing the sliding door you need to make sure everything is level and flat. If you had to cut the opening then this might mean a few extra steps for you. You can use a 2X4 and mix up concrete to fill in and level it out. You should secure the 2X4 into place by drilling a pilot hole and then inserting the screws until it is secured. Now you can fill the concrete mixture up to the top of the board making sure to scrape and level it off. Make sure that the concrete dries completely before you continue. Also, check after the cement has dried to ensure that it is level and flat just as it should be.

This is also the time to build the frame out. Measure the width of the opening and the width of your door. Now check to make sure the door will fit and be centered. If there is a gap then you will need to frame up more so that the door sits flush.

5

Getting Ready To Install The Door

Now you need to use foil tape, you will run the foil all the way across the bottom to help seal. Also, allow it to go up the sides of the house frame about six inches. You want to cover all the area with it to help ensure that no water gets through and into your house. Once the foil take has been placed it is time to caulk. Caulk the bottom where you placed the tape. You should make three beads that are the full widths.

After the caulk beading is in place it is time to insert the jamb of the door. Make sure to caulk along the top of the door jamb for extra seal right before you install it. Now all you need to do is lean the top of the jamb back and then slide it up and into place. You may need some help with this, so hopefully, you kept your extra set of hands around.

Once the door jamb is setting into place you need to check that it is plumb. You can use your tape measure and measure from the top left corner to the bottom right corner. Now measure from the top right corner to the bottom left corner. These two numbers should be the same, and if they are then it is squared and you are ready to continue.

6

Securing The Jamb

First, you need to insert the shims. Once the shims are in place use your drill to place screws in the holes that are in the door jamb and run the screws into the frame of the house. This shouldn't take long, especially if you are using a power drill. Do be sure to tighten the screws but avoid over tightening them.

7

Inserting The Sliding Doors

Finally, you are ready to place the sliding doors into the jamb. You will lean it back, place the top where it will go into the top track and then lean the bottom of the door in to get it into the bottom track. You will need to do this for both of the doors.

The stationary door will have two screws that you will place holding it to the jamb so that it doesn't move. There will be a spot at the top of the stationary door as well as one at the bottom.

If you want you can use some foam insulation spray in the rough opening to keep your unit air tight. Check once both doors are in place to make sure that the door is able to freely and easily slide open and closed.

If everything works like it should then you are now finished. If you are having trouble with the door then you will need to look at where you may have gone wrong during the repair and fix the issue at hand. Once the door is functioning properly all you have left do is clean up.

Conclusion

If you did end up having to build onto the frame to get the door centered you will need to do something with the area to make it look uniform with the rest of the house. So that the section which you added will match the rest of the house as well. You don't want to make this look like a quick unprofessional patch job. This means you should take your time and make sure to do it right the first time around.

How To Install A Sliding Patio Door

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  1. VistaTREK French Patio Door in Cedar Color with Single Configuration and Classic Styleview
    VistaTREK French Patio Door in Cedar Color with Single Configuration and Classic Style
    Grande Patio Doors seal tight and lock easily, and are the ultimate option for opening your home to the beautiful surroundings outside. Choose from traditional wood designs that increase the visual appeal of any home, contemporary materials that give a modern look to your exterior, or designer doors that you can customize to fit your exact tastes and needs. All doors feature incredible energy efficiency and highly durable materials for a lifetime of convenience and aesthetic appeal. Customize your doors with multiple grille styles, interior and exterior colors, and eight beautiful textures or stain colors.All fixtures are masterfully designed to operate perfectly for the lifetime of your home, and all tracks or hinges are hidden in the door to allow the maximum space for your floors and patio. Choose from three handle and lock options.
    Estimated Price: $799.00+
  2. VistaTREK Center-Hinged Patio Door in Cedar Color with Single Configuration and Modern Styleview
    VistaTREK Center-Hinged Patio Door in Cedar Color with Single Configuration and Modern Style
    Grande Patio Doors seal tight and lock easily, and are the ultimate option for opening your home to the beautiful surroundings outside. Choose from traditional wood designs that increase the visual appeal of any home, contemporary materials that give a modern look to your exterior, or designer doors that you can customize to fit your exact tastes and needs. All doors feature incredible energy efficiency and highly durable materials for a lifetime of convenience and aesthetic appeal. Customize your doors with multiple grille styles, interior and exterior colors, and eight beautiful textures or stain colors.All fixtures are masterfully designed to operate perfectly for the lifetime of your home, and all tracks or hinges are hidden in the door to allow the maximum space for your floors and patio. Choose from three handle and lock options.
    Estimated Price: $799.00+
  3. VistaTREK Sliding Patio Door in Cedar Color with Single Configuration and Traditional Styleview
    VistaTREK Sliding Patio Door in Cedar Color with Single Configuration and Traditional Style
    Grande Patio Doors seal tight and lock easily, and are the ultimate option for opening your home to the beautiful surroundings outside. Choose from traditional wood designs that increase the visual appeal of any home, contemporary materials that give a modern look to your exterior, or designer doors that you can customize to fit your exact tastes and needs. All doors feature incredible energy efficiency and highly durable materials for a lifetime of convenience and aesthetic appeal. Customize your doors with multiple grille styles, interior and exterior colors, and eight beautiful textures or stain colors.All fixtures are masterfully designed to operate perfectly for the lifetime of your home, and all tracks or hinges are hidden in the door to allow the maximum space for your floors and patio. Choose from three handle and lock options.
    Estimated Price: $799.00+
  4. VistaTREK French Patio Door in Cherry Color with Single Configuration and Contemporary Styleview
    VistaTREK French Patio Door in Cherry Color with Single Configuration and Contemporary Style
    Grande Patio Doors seal tight and lock easily, and are the ultimate option for opening your home to the beautiful surroundings outside. Choose from traditional wood designs that increase the visual appeal of any home, contemporary materials that give a modern look to your exterior, or designer doors that you can customize to fit your exact tastes and needs. All doors feature incredible energy efficiency and highly durable materials for a lifetime of convenience and aesthetic appeal. Customize your doors with multiple grille styles, interior and exterior colors, and eight beautiful textures or stain colors.All fixtures are masterfully designed to operate perfectly for the lifetime of your home, and all tracks or hinges are hidden in the door to allow the maximum space for your floors and patio. Choose from three handle and lock options.
    Estimated Price: $799.00+
  5. MaxViewz Sliding Patio Door in white Color with Double Configuration and Classic Styleview
    MaxViewz Sliding Patio Door in white Color with Double Configuration and Classic Style
    Grande Patio Doors seal tight and lock easily, and are the ultimate option for opening your home to the beautiful surroundings outside. Choose from traditional wood designs that increase the visual appeal of any home, contemporary materials that give a modern look to your exterior, or designer doors that you can customize to fit your exact tastes and needs. All doors feature incredible energy efficiency and highly durable materials for a lifetime of convenience and aesthetic appeal. Customize your doors with multiple grille styles, interior and exterior colors, and eight beautiful textures or stain colors.All fixtures are masterfully designed to operate perfectly for the lifetime of your home, and all tracks or hinges are hidden in the door to allow the maximum space for your floors and patio. Choose from three handle and lock options.
    Estimated Price: $799.00+
  6. MaxViewz Sliding Patio Door in white Color with Double Configuration and Traditional Styleview
    MaxViewz Sliding Patio Door in white Color with Double Configuration and Traditional Style
    Grande Patio Doors seal tight and lock easily, and are the ultimate option for opening your home to the beautiful surroundings outside. Choose from traditional wood designs that increase the visual appeal of any home, contemporary materials that give a modern look to your exterior, or designer doors that you can customize to fit your exact tastes and needs. All doors feature incredible energy efficiency and highly durable materials for a lifetime of convenience and aesthetic appeal. Customize your doors with multiple grille styles, interior and exterior colors, and eight beautiful textures or stain colors.All fixtures are masterfully designed to operate perfectly for the lifetime of your home, and all tracks or hinges are hidden in the door to allow the maximum space for your floors and patio. Choose from three handle and lock options.
    Estimated Price: $799.00+
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  8. MaxViewz French Patio Door in white Color with Double Configuration and Contemporary Styleview
    MaxViewz French Patio Door in white Color with Double Configuration and Contemporary Style
    Grande Patio Doors seal tight and lock easily, and are the ultimate option for opening your home to the beautiful surroundings outside. Choose from traditional wood designs that increase the visual appeal of any home, contemporary materials that give a modern look to your exterior, or designer doors that you can customize to fit your exact tastes and needs. All doors feature incredible energy efficiency and highly durable materials for a lifetime of convenience and aesthetic appeal. Customize your doors with multiple grille styles, interior and exterior colors, and eight beautiful textures or stain colors.All fixtures are masterfully designed to operate perfectly for the lifetime of your home, and all tracks or hinges are hidden in the door to allow the maximum space for your floors and patio. Choose from three handle and lock options.
    Estimated Price: $799.00+
  9. MaxViewz Center-Hinged Patio Door in white Color with Double Configuration and Rustic Styleview
    MaxViewz Center-Hinged Patio Door in white Color with Double Configuration and Rustic Style
    Grande Patio Doors seal tight and lock easily, and are the ultimate option for opening your home to the beautiful surroundings outside. Choose from traditional wood designs that increase the visual appeal of any home, contemporary materials that give a modern look to your exterior, or designer doors that you can customize to fit your exact tastes and needs. All doors feature incredible energy efficiency and highly durable materials for a lifetime of convenience and aesthetic appeal. Customize your doors with multiple grille styles, interior and exterior colors, and eight beautiful textures or stain colors.All fixtures are masterfully designed to operate perfectly for the lifetime of your home, and all tracks or hinges are hidden in the door to allow the maximum space for your floors and patio. Choose from three handle and lock options.
    Estimated Price: $799.00+
  10. MaxViewz French Patio Door in Oak Color with Double Configuration and Modern Styleview
    MaxViewz French Patio Door in Oak Color with Double Configuration and Modern Style
    Grande Patio Doors seal tight and lock easily, and are the ultimate option for opening your home to the beautiful surroundings outside. Choose from traditional wood designs that increase the visual appeal of any home, contemporary materials that give a modern look to your exterior, or designer doors that you can customize to fit your exact tastes and needs. All doors feature incredible energy efficiency and highly durable materials for a lifetime of convenience and aesthetic appeal. Customize your doors with multiple grille styles, interior and exterior colors, and eight beautiful textures or stain colors.All fixtures are masterfully designed to operate perfectly for the lifetime of your home, and all tracks or hinges are hidden in the door to allow the maximum space for your floors and patio. Choose from three handle and lock options.
    Estimated Price: $799.00+
  11. MaxViewz Center-Hinged Patio Door in Oak Color with Double Configuration and Traditional Styleview
    MaxViewz Center-Hinged Patio Door in Oak Color with Double Configuration and Traditional Style
    Grande Patio Doors seal tight and lock easily, and are the ultimate option for opening your home to the beautiful surroundings outside. Choose from traditional wood designs that increase the visual appeal of any home, contemporary materials that give a modern look to your exterior, or designer doors that you can customize to fit your exact tastes and needs. All doors feature incredible energy efficiency and highly durable materials for a lifetime of convenience and aesthetic appeal. Customize your doors with multiple grille styles, interior and exterior colors, and eight beautiful textures or stain colors.All fixtures are masterfully designed to operate perfectly for the lifetime of your home, and all tracks or hinges are hidden in the door to allow the maximum space for your floors and patio. Choose from three handle and lock options.
    Estimated Price: $799.00+
  12. MaxViewz Sliding Patio Door in Oak Color with Double Configuration and Contemporary Styleview
    MaxViewz Sliding Patio Door in Oak Color with Double Configuration and Contemporary Style
    Grande Patio Doors seal tight and lock easily, and are the ultimate option for opening your home to the beautiful surroundings outside. Choose from traditional wood designs that increase the visual appeal of any home, contemporary materials that give a modern look to your exterior, or designer doors that you can customize to fit your exact tastes and needs. All doors feature incredible energy efficiency and highly durable materials for a lifetime of convenience and aesthetic appeal. Customize your doors with multiple grille styles, interior and exterior colors, and eight beautiful textures or stain colors.All fixtures are masterfully designed to operate perfectly for the lifetime of your home, and all tracks or hinges are hidden in the door to allow the maximum space for your floors and patio. Choose from three handle and lock options.
    Estimated Price: $799.00+
  13. VistaTREK French Patio Door in Mahogany Color with Double Configuration and Traditional Styleview
    VistaTREK French Patio Door in Mahogany Color with Double Configuration and Traditional Style
    Grande Patio Doors seal tight and lock easily, and are the ultimate option for opening your home to the beautiful surroundings outside. Choose from traditional wood designs that increase the visual appeal of any home, contemporary materials that give a modern look to your exterior, or designer doors that you can customize to fit your exact tastes and needs. All doors feature incredible energy efficiency and highly durable materials for a lifetime of convenience and aesthetic appeal. Customize your doors with multiple grille styles, interior and exterior colors, and eight beautiful textures or stain colors.All fixtures are masterfully designed to operate perfectly for the lifetime of your home, and all tracks or hinges are hidden in the door to allow the maximum space for your floors and patio. Choose from three handle and lock options.
    Estimated Price: $799.00+
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Questions And Answers

What is the best material for sliding glass doors?

One of the most popular door materials used is aluminum. This material is resistant to both the outdoor elements and insects. Aluminum is able to handle the weight that comes with sliding glass doors and still allow them to function properly years down the road.

Do all patio doors slide open?

No, all patio doors do not slide open. There are many types of patio doors from double doors to single hinged doors, bi-fold doors, French doors, and then, of course, there are sliding doors as you mentioned. Each door offers you something slightly different while all serving as an entry.

What is the best color for a patio door?

There is no "best" color. You will want to find a color that suits your style. You also want to take into consideration the exterior of your home. Ideally, you would want the color that you choose for the door to compliment the rest of the home.

What is the difference between a French door and a patio door?

There are a few differences between these two doors. The main one is the way the doors open. French doors swing out most of the time. Patio doors have a track they slide along and open sideways.

How big are standard patio doors?

The size of patio doors does vary based on different factors. However, the average patio doors are around 6 ft. and 8 in. in height. The width depends on whether there are 2 or 3 panels.

What are the different kinds of patio doors?

There are a few different types of patio doors. The main ones include the swinging doors, bi-fold patio doors and the sliding glass patio doors as well.

How expensive are patio doors?

Most patio doors are on the higher-end. They generally run from around $1,500 to $4,000. However, these doors are higher quality and more durable than many other doors, so most believe the price is worth it.

Can you get patio doors in any color you want?

There are many colors you can get patio doors in. When you get a patio door, the wood of the door or the metal can be stained.

Are there different patio door styles?

You can get different styles of patio doors. Some of these doors are fancier than others. You can get a basic look in the patio doors too.

Can you get French patio doors?

Yes. You can get French patio doors. These are more elegant than the average patio door. They are a bit pricier too, but you can get them.

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INTERESTING RESOURCES

open patio door revealing the backyard

Cheap Patio Doors

Not every homeowner wants to spend a fortune when they need to replace their patio doors. Often, that makes cheap patio doors the preferred option, allowing the buyer to save money while accomplishing their goal. . They can also be found in a broad selection of styles and finishes, allowing shoppers to find a set of cheap patio doors that meet both their budgetary and design needs. Additionally, there are a number of functional options to choose from, including French, folding, sliding, and swing, giving the homeowner the opportunity to select a door that operates in their preferred manner. read more

Materials

contemporary patio doors inside of a home

Functional Design

sliding patio door in the open position

Colors and Finishes

double hinged patio door
outside view of wooden patio doors with a rectangular transom

Wooden Patio Doors

Patio doors can have a large impact on the aesthetics in the room where you install them. These doors can allow more light to shine into your home, improve the air circulation, and establish a pathway to the outdoors. The enhanced appearance of your home along with energy savings and a warranty that is long-lasting, can all add to the value of your home as well. Wood doors will need a little more maintenance than other materials such as a regular coat of paint to ensure it is sealed against rot, but the warmth of feeling they provide is unparalleled. Choosing the right wooden patio doors for your home is not complicated but it does require a little of your time to make sure you are making the best purchase and one that will work for the opening that you currently have. By taking the time and using the helpful tips below to make your purchase, you are sure to find that you will be happy with your patio door for years and years to come and give you a return on your investment in your home that will increase market value. read more

Type of Door

wooden patio door that is open

Weather Stripping

hinged wooden patio doors

Security

sliding wooden patio doors opened
S Retractable Swinging French Patio Door

Outswinging French Patio Door

French doors enhance the look of any home. Developed in France in the 17th century, the French doors were first seen during the war. The style features hinges on the side jambs that connect the door panels, so they meet when the door is closed. Plus, the because they are traditionally made of wood frames and sashes with glass panes inserted into them, the doors allow natural lighting to fill your home. Scientific evidence exists that natural lighting has an array of benefits for both mental and physical well-being. When the doors are open, the path is clear, proving a simple and easy entrance and exit into the home from the patio. Installing out swinging French patio doors provides a classic look that evokes elegance and charm, but the doors offer so many additional benefits as well. Since this door style swings to the outside to open, they save plenty of space on the inside of your home. You will be able to have the party flow from the inside out to the patio without having to move the furniture out of the way. read more

Materials

S Folding Exterior Patio Door

Costs

S Masonite French Patio Door

Energy-Efficiency

S Double Glazed Swing French Door
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