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8 Reasons Why Sliding Door Is Hard To Open

8 Reasons Why Sliding Door Is Hard To Open

Sliding doors open up your home to natural light and the incredible views of the outside world. They provide easy access to your property without having to add more doors. The problem is that sliding doors can sometimes be a lot harder to open than you think. 

If you own a property with sliding doors, you know that waking up to a stuck sliding door, or one that won’t open is frustrating.

In this article, we have listed some of the most common reasons sliding doors are hard to open and how to fix it.

1. Dirt Build-Up On the Door

Dirt pile-up can stop the door from opening and closing smoothly. As the seasons go by, your sliding doors are always collecting dirt, dust, debris, mud, and more dirt. All this filth collects on the tracks, which prevents the rollers from doing their job efficiently.

Solution: Carefully remove your sliding door and clean the track thoroughly. Use a crevice tool to remove large debris and dirt from tight corners. Vacuum the track and rollers to remove all the dirt build-up. Lastly, use some cleaning detergent and a brush to scrub the remaining dirt.

2. Rusted Rollers and Tracks

It’s hard to think of a time when your sliding doors weren’t exposed to the harsh weather. If you live in a hot, humid region near the beach, you’ve probably seen how badly rust can eat its way into metal surfaces. The rust attacks the tracks and wheels, which keeps the patio doors sticking to the tracks.

Solution: Take your doors apart and unscrew the rollers. If the rust hasn’t eaten too much of the metal, scrub it off using a metal brush. Vacuum the remaining rust particles and give them a last wipe with some clean, wet cloth. If there’s severe damage to your doors, replace the affected parts and reinstall them.

3. Damaged Tracks and Rollers

If you have a home with sliding doors, you’re probably well aware that they are not the most durable construction. While these doors are great for allowing year-round access to your home, they do necessitate some work to keep them in tip-top shape. 

Years of battering cause dents to the tracks and rollers. When your patio door is hard to slide, you should get it fixed as soon as possible.

Solution: Fixing of sliding glass door track starts with removing the door and checking for any damaged parts. Unscrew the broken parts, and replace them with new parts. For bent trackers, use some pliers to fix them then remount the sliding door, secure it properly, and unstick it.

4. Wheels Out of Track

Do you ever find yourself struggling to figure out how to fix sliding glass door that sticks out of track? If you’re like most people, you’ve experienced it at least once. Sliding doors can easily jump out of track and hurt someone. 

Solution: Always check if rollers are in place when you start experiencing issues with your sliding door. To fix rollers out of track, screw the rollers back into place. 

5. Tilted or Unequalized Rollers

If your front and rear rollers or wheels are not screwed evenly, this might be the reason you can’t slide the doors with ease. So check if the rollers are properly aligned - both should lay on the track evenly for the door to slide better.


Remove the sliding door, and unscrew the rollers. Dust them off, and screw them back in. Do this evenly on both rollers to keep them balanced.

6. Faulty Locking Mechanism

Are you experiencing issues with the sliding door locks? A faulty locking mechanism will lock itself and make it difficult to open the door. Unfortunately, locking mechanisms are tricky bits that require an expert’s help. Call a professional locksmith to get it fixed.

Solution: Use a screwdriver to remove the locker system, and make the adjustments on the locker, then screw it back to see if it works. Watch this video to fix the sliding door lock

7. Extreme Temperature Fluctuations

Extreme temperature can be detrimental to almost everything on earth, more so your sliding closet doors. Extreme temperature makes the rollers and tracks shift sizes. Hot makes the metal tracks and rollers expand, and cold makes them contract.

Solution: Turn on the AC in your home. You might also have to apply some extra force to overcome the new size.

8. Damage to the Door Frames

If your top or bottom sliding door frames get damaged, loosen, and come off, your sliding doors will have a hard time opening. The frames may come into direct contact with the tracks, inducing excessive friction that makes them hard to open.

Solution: To replace the damaged door frames, you can contact sliding doors repair services, and get that fixed.

Your home is a place of belonging for you and your family. So before you spend a huge amount of money on sliding glass door fixing, new door replacements, and any other additions to your property, be sure to speak to a door expert at United Porte today!

Final Thoughts

Since sliding doors are exposed to dirt and rust and even wear out prematurely due to friction, they require routine maintenance for long-lasting use. All in all, we have to admit that repairing a sliding door is no easy feat. That’s why it’s important to get help from an expert if you’re not sure how to make sliding glass doors slide easier.


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