Susan S
Susan S
  • Hometalker
  • Fredericksburg, VA
Asked on Mar 12, 2012

SLIDING GLASS DOORS: REPLACING ROLLERS

OhSallyZKMS Woodworks
+7

Answered

After being in our house 14 yrs this coming June, it seems as if the rollers on SGD have failed.
From scrolling thru a number of posts it would seem that it's a relatively easy fix to replace them. So my question is, are there "universal" replacement rollers or what? I have no earthly idea what company made the door so hope it doesn't require parts specific to the mfgr.
I also am wondering if I was partly responsible for the demise of the rollers in that I'm a little obsessive/compulsive when it comes to cleaning the tracks and all the crud & grunge that gets trapped in the slot where the slider sits on the metal track. I go after it w/a vengence (after vacuuming of course) but I use anything from Fantastik to window cleaner sprayed on the tracks & into all crevices, using an assortment of brushes to poke, prod & tease any nastiness out (it's a woman thing). Did I unwittingly cause something to rust or deteriorate by my over-exuberance? Oh - and for the record, yes I do rinse thoroughly ; ~ ) Thanx so much for your input.
10 answers
  • 3po3
    on Mar 13, 2012

    Have you tried simply lubricating or adjusting the rollers? I don't imagine you ruined rollers by cleaning them, but they may have dried out with all those cleanings, so they don't roll as smoothly, but that can possibly be fixed without replacing.

  • Susan S
    on Mar 13, 2012

    Thanks for the answers, but I'm still hoping for more ideas. Steve, there is no doubt the rollers are completely shot!! The door is almost impossible to get closed - 2 hands, grab tightly and pull, tug, groan & grunt!! Our cat thinks its great cause it gives her plenty of time to make her escape while our attention is diverted trying to man handle this )^%%@#$& door!!!

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Mar 13, 2012

    Susan I have done of number of these over the years. The first thing is determine if the rollers are shot or just out of Adjustment. Most doors have an adjustment screw that can raise and lower the "wheel" this allows the door to be adjusted for parallel and a good seal. Sometimes these adj screws are found behind some caps or covers along the bottom edge, on the face of the door for most wood doors and on the sides with metal doors. If these adjustments do not work the next step is to inspect the wheels. This will require the door to be removed. Some lift up and in from the track while others may require a wood trim piece to be removed from the top of the track to allow the door to tip inside from the top then lifted out. once the door is out the wheel assembly can be removed. Most replacement wheels can then be "matched" base on what you now have in your hand. I have seen where some wheels were seized at the bushing in the center...this caused the wheel to NOT roll and a flat spot was ground into the metal wheel, others had crack bearing, broken wheels (plastic), bent axles and supports etc. In one case ( in a log home) the door had been compressed to a point where the door frame itself needed to be trimmed to keep from binding. In all of these repairs I have done the final result was a one finger push to slide the door back and forth. Some were simple adjustments others full on door surgery. BTW...oil and grease on the track collect more dirt which leads to premature failures. The wheels need to ROLL...not slide, lubricants tend to make them slide. Rocks and sand in the track can kill a door quickly...so vacuuming is good.

  • Susan S
    on Mar 13, 2012

    Thanks so much KMS - I knew you'd eventually come thru for me!!! LOL What I didn't say was that I have also noticed some kind of very fine metal looking dust in the tracks kind of like graphite. To me that sounds like something might be actually scraping the track when attempting to move the door back & forth. There is definitely significant resistence when trying to close it - sure gives the abs a work out! Sadly I think from your description we're probably dealing w/seizing, a flat spot and who knows what else??

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Mar 14, 2012

    If the wheel gets worn to a point the bottom of the door can drag in the track...this will leave gouges along the lower sides of the center rib that the wheel runs on. Some basic Sherlocking will tell what is going on. Observation and clues can go a long long way. Your graphite type observation has be deducing metal wheels...aluminum track

  • Susan S
    on Mar 14, 2012

    Yep, aluminum track - wheels?? dunno yet. Haven't had the nerve to lift it out yet but we figure, based on the symptoms, the diagnosis will be replacing the "innards"! FUN FUN : ~ ( Eventually we will have to replace the whole door but just trying to keep it usuable for the time being!!

  • Susan S
    on Mar 14, 2012

    KMS, now that I have your attention . . . . .I have this Moen kitchen faucet, lever type w/the pull out spray in the (?) head. When the lever is turned completely to the cold side there is a constant drip but when turned to the left it stops. Any thoughts on how to fix this?? See picture.

    q sliding glass doors replacing rollers, doors, home maintenance repairs, Leaking faucet Leaks when turned to cold position stops when turned to hot How to fix
  • KMS Woodworks
    on Mar 15, 2012

    my first impression is you will need to tighten the "cartridge compression" ring that is located below the handle. The handle should be attached with a small allen screw then under the handle there should be a compression ring.

  • Z
    on Aug 29, 2012

    Susan, I highly recommend french doors if and when you decide to replace your slider. Our current home has four sets of double doors so I insisted they all were french. I'm so happy I did. We just need to get screens on all of them. Only have them on one set so far.

  • OhSally
    on Apr 28, 2015

    While hubby was in the Army, we moved 20 times...many of our rental homes had sliding closet doors. I'd say pretty much EVERY ONE of them were a disaster! They went out of alignment, the "workings" went bad, and they were difficult to open and close. Hubby is an avid DIY'er, but we never found a fix that worked for long...including new hardware. After that experience, I hate sliding doors! I made sure our current home has actual doors that open on hinges because they actually WORK! I wish you luck with your sliding doors...better luck than I've had with mine!

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