Sunday, August 20, 2017

How To Replace or Adjust Your Home’s Patio Door Rollers

December 24, 2006 by  
Filed under Lawn & Garden, Windows & Doors

Garden Sliding Patio Door - photo by RogerIt’s time to replace or adjust your patio door rollers when opening your patio doors become an aerobic workout activity. Although patio door rollers have a mean time between failures (MTBF) of 2000 hours of continuous use under normal use, there are times when they do fail earlier than their estimated serviceable life. Replacing or adjusting your patio door rollers is something you can do on your own with a little help from a friend because you do need strength to take the door out!

Sliding patio doors are usually made of aluminum, wood or vinyl and use a system of ball bearing rollers to easily slide back and forth. Most patio door systems employ tandem rollers to make the doors glide smoothly on the door’s monorail. Holes for the adjusting screws are covered with plastic caps and are easily accessible in the front of the door bottom.

When your patio door becomes hard to open or close, check the adjusting screws first and make the necessary adjustments. Most of the time, adjusting the tandem rollers a few millimeters higher does the trick due to the build up of gunk and dirt on the monorail. This happens no matter how weather-tight your patio door rollers are regardless of what material they are made from. Metal or wood during contracts in cold weather and expands in hot weather. This natural behavior of metal and wood is enough to let in minuscule dust particles that build up over the years.

For wooden patio doors, you have to lift them slightly to remove the weight from the rollers before making any adjustments.

If tightening the rollers’ adjustment screw does not make your patio door work smoothly, then you have no choice but to replace the patio door rollers. You have to have somebody assist you with this because the doors are quite heavy and unwieldy due to their size.

Depending on the age of your aluminum or vinyl patio doors, they may have rollers that can be replaced without removing the bottom part of the door, check first if there is enough room to pull out the patio door roller assembly. Otherwise, you need somebody to help you lift the door out of its track and remove the screws holding the door bottom. Be sure to check for any metal tabs lock the bottom in position and pry it open gently with a screwdriver.

There are vinyl patio doors that are glued together. Be extra careful when vinyl handling old vinyl patio doors because they get brittle with age. Removing and replacing the vinyl patio door rollers may be more difficult. However, always look for the tell-tale metal or vinyl tab or screw at the bottom. As soon as you have the bottom off, remove the patio door rollers and get an exact replacement from your local hardware store or glass shop.

Always remember to adjust your new patio door rollers in the maximum allowable height during re-assembly. This ensures that the patio door rollers do not get in the way when you put the door back in place. Make sure that all holes are properly capped to prevent any screw from getting in contact with the glass.

As soon as your door is back on its tracks, make the necessary adjustments to align and level the door securely with the frame. Make sure the door lock is in perfect alignment with the receptacle to avoid repositioning adjusting the door lock mechanism.

Your door should now open and close easily; even your little kid can open it effortlessly!

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