Do you find yourself tugging a little harder at your traditional sliding glass door lately? Does the door make noise as it opens and shuts? If you answered “yes” to either of these questions, chances are you will need to perform a bit of sliding glass door maintenance.
Over time, leaves, dirt, sand, mud, and other foreign objects accumulate in the sliding glass wall track. A dirty traditional slider track can become an expensive problem if left unattended. When that happens, you may have to replace the entire door, including the frame.
Thankfully, there are some things you can do to avoid these problems. A good deep clean gets rid of a lot of the dirt that can cause problems. After that, a light routine cleaning will keep the issues from recurring. The best part is that you don't need expensive tools or chemicals to clean the track. You can accomplish what you need using everyday household items. Here are a few of our best tips on how to clean sliding glass door tracks.
The Importance of Sliding Glass Door Maintenance
A well-maintained sliding glass door will give you many years of solid performance. Failing to do sliding glass door maintenance, however, can leave you with many problems.
A dirty slider track prevents the free movement of the door. As dirt continues to build up in the track, it will become harder to open and close the door. Ultimately, you could end up damaging the hardware and door frame by forcing it open and closed.
Cleaning your sliding glass door tracks is also important for safety. Continually applying force to the door may eventually cause the traditional sliding glass door panel to come off the track.
Routine Maintenance for Sliding Glass Door Tracks
Routine sliding glass door maintenance is the best way to avoid problems with your door. Ideally, you should clean the tracks at least once every month. Clean more often if you have heavy traffic through the door.
Supplies Needed for Cleaning Sliding Glass Door Tracks
Before beginning, gather a few supplies. You don’t need to spend a ton of money on expensive cleaners. Much of what you need are common household items. You will need the following:
Non-abrasive household cleaner
Start your routine sliding glass door maintenance with the easy stuff. Remove all leaves by hand. Next, grab a vacuum and clean out all visible debris. Taking care of the vacuuming first cuts down on the work required for the next few steps.
How to Clean Sliding Glass Door Tracks by Applying Cleaning Solution
Making a solution of white vinegar and water is a simple, effective way to clean aluminum. Using a clean spray bottle, mix equal parts white vinegar and water, then spray along the track. Wipe clean with a dry, soft cloth. Make sure that all moisture is wiped off the track. Alternatively, warm soapy water is a gentle, effective way to clean aluminum. Pour a small amount of soapy water to trouble spots along door tracks to help loosen dirt and debris, then wipe clean.
Scrub and Wipe
Take the toothbrush and begin to scrub at the grime in the track. This helps to loosen the debris further. Once you are done, place a paper towel in the track. Use paper towels to soak up the liquid until dry. For aluminum and other metal surfaces, avoid using heavily abrasive materials or excessive scrubbing to preserve the integrity and aesthetics of the sliding glass doors.
Getting the Corners
Finish your cleaning by getting into the jamb. Use a butter knife wrapped with a cloth to dig into the corners. Things should come off easily, given the solution you just applied. Avoid scrubbing too hard with sharp objects as you could damage the track. Also, avoid harsh chemicals when cleaning the sliding glass door track as they can erode the frame.
Additional Traditional Sliding Glass Door Maintenance Tips
Weather stripping is important in keeping dirt and debris from the traditional slider. It also plays a vital role in keeping water from seeping under the door. Over time, the weather stripping can become worn and lose its effectiveness. Replacing it while cleaning the sliding glass door track is an easy task that only takes a few minutes. Doing this task while performing a deep clean is the ideal time to get it done.
Should You Lubricate Your Sliding Glass Doors?
Lubrication is essential to keeping the door opening and closing smoothly. Depending on the type of material your sliding glass doors are made of, you may need to use a specific type of lubrication method. Check with your door’s user manual before using any chemical substance.
Maintenance for NanaWall Floor Supported Products
If you are conducting maintenance on a NanaWall opening glass wall product, it’s important to consult your user manual first.
For routine maintenance, here are a few tips:
Periodically check for any worn or damaged components, and that sealant/caulking is intact. Loose caulking can be trimmed and replaced with good quality caulk.
If floor tracks, weep holes, or door jambs have debris, remove any obstructions. Clean gaskets regularly and check that they sit properly and are in good condition.
NanaWall aluminum products are best cleaned with warm, soapy water. Do not use harsh chemicals, which can damage surfaces. For stubborn stains and deposits, use mineral spirits to remove.
NanaWall wood products can be cleaned with water and a soft-bristled brush. Stubborn accumulations can be cleaned with household detergent. Hardware, hinges, and handles can be cleaned with a soft cloth and mild cleanser.
Sliding glass door maintenance is key to a safe and fully operational sliding glass door. Many of these maintenance tips are simple and only take a few moments. When you are ready to replace your sliding glass doors, check out the many NanaWall options available. We have a variety of sliding glass walls, folding glass walls, and frameless glass walls designed to with functionality and aesthetics in mind. Whatever the application, we have the right system for you.