Sliding glass doors add beauty to your home while offering efficiency and convenience, a perfect recipe to add value to your property. Once you've installed one, you'll need to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for maintenance to keep the door functioning and sliding correctly. Regardless of manufacturer, a part of these instructions will surely be regular cleaning. Sliding glass doors will become difficult to slide or jam completely if not cleaned regularly due to debris and dirt settling in the sliding tracks. A stuck sliding door can be a hazard if you try to open it forcefully, with the potential to cause injury, especially to children. Besides being dangerous, poorly maintained sliding glass doors are bothersome and unattractive. Grime, smudges, and dirt become more visible on a glass door than conventional wooden ones.
STEP-BY-Step Guide to Clean a Sliding glass door
Cleaning the Tracks
Every cleaning ritual needs appropriate equipment and props to get the job done. Therefore, you will need the following:
- Portable vacuum cleaner
- An old toothbrush
- Cleaning liquid
- Steel wool
- A Tack cloth
- A Terry cloth towel
- Oil or lubricant
If you are only sensing a bit of friction while sliding the door, use a slightly oiled cloth to wipe the sliding tracks, and it may solve the problem. However, if you're experiencing resistance, or if the door gets stuck, then you definitely need to remove the sliding glass door panels and give it a thorough cleaning.
1. Pull the Sliding glass door Out
You can remove the sliding glass door using one of the two methods. You can use a screwdriver and place it under the lower roller to raise it off the track. Pull the door towards yourself as you lift. The other way is to grasp the door from each end carefully. Now lift it in the upward direction and pull it towards yourself simultaneously.
2. Vacuum Cleaning
You can use a miniature or portable vacuum for this activity. Thoroughly remove any gravel, sand, bits of leaves, and other debris stuck in the rolling tracks of the door. Be sure to vacuum the sides of the sliding glass door from sides, top, and bottom.
3. Get Rid of any Rust
If your sliding glass door is metal, such as aluminum, then it's prone to rust. Your door is more likely to rust if you live in an area that experiences excessive moisture, humidity or torrential rain. Rust is one of the most common reasons a sliding door will get stuck.
Steel wool comes in handy to remove the rust. Use a tack cloth to wipe the surface of the sliding tracks to eliminate any remaining metal particles.
4. Remove Grease and Grime
Regular use of the sliding glass door, exposure to various elements, and change in temperature may cause grime to accumulate in the sliding tracks. This thick oil will prevent your door from operating as it should.
Take some acetone and dip a toothbrush in it. Now rub the inside tracks with the wet bristles. Repeat this procedure on the sides, bottom, and top of the door as well. Once you have finished cleaning, use a terry cloth towel to wipe the tracks.
5. New Greasing
Once you have thoroughly cleaned the tracks, use a small quantity of lubrication to grease the door tracks. Finally, install the door back into the frame. Once the door is in place, slide it open and shut a few times to spread the lubricant throughout the track and wheels.
Cleaning the Glass Surface of the Door
Things you will need for this task are:
- A window washing solution or soap
- Clean cloth
- Paper towels
- Foam sponge or a microfiber cloth
A quick precaution: If you are a resident in a condo or an apartment, then lay some rags on the floor. It will prevent water from dripping down the building, causing a nuisance for the neighbors.
Follow these steps:
- Make a solution by mixing soap in water.
- Take a clean rag and dip it in this solution and wet the whole glass surface using it. It will loosen any dirt stuck on the glass. Do this on both the interior and exterior of the sliding glass door and leave it for a few minutes.
- Now wipe off the solution with a clean paper towel or a cloth. Always work the window from top to bottom.
- You can spray or apply a window washing solution to the glass surface using a foam sponge or a microfiber cloth. Make sure to cover the entire glass surface with this solution.
- Use a squeegee to wipe it clean immediately. If you leave it for too long, it may create blotchy patches when cleaning it off.
- Repeat the same procedure on the other side of the sliding glass door.
Never use a scraping tool to remove any stuck debris. However, you can repeat this cleaning procedure multiple times for squeaky clean glass panels.
Cleaning Hardware and Door Frames
The door frame and handles of a sliding glass door may accumulate smears and smudges. You can follow these simple steps to clean them:
- Take a damp cloth and use it to wipe the frame around the edge and glass.
- Now use a scouring pad or a rough damp cloth to clean the door frame’s threshold and bottom. These are more likely to accumulate dirt over time.
- Take a dry cloth and wipe off any dust from the top of the sliding door frame.
- Wipe the whole frame using a damp cloth.
- You can use soapy water to clean more stubborn dirt patches. Thoroughly clean the handles both from the outside and the inside.
- Use metal door polish to shine.
In the end, make sure to wipe off any excess liquid around the door, tracks, and frame.
If you are interested in replacing or purchasing a new sliding door for your home, Builders & Remodelers carries durable and beautiful doors that we custom install. We offer a wide range of energy-efficient sliding door designs that complement the interior and exterior of the home. The sashes and frames are insulated, so annoying air leaks and drafts are eliminated, which helps lower your heating and cooling costs. Call us or fill out our online form for a free, no-hassle quote today!