The sliding door system can be a good option when we want to divide two rooms, since it takes up very little space and offers great practicality. However, it is a mechanism that must be installed correctly to enjoy its usefulness for a long time.
There are areas of the home in which a conventional door is not suitable, not only because of the space that the opening radius occupies, but also because it does not allow furniture and decorative objects to be placed on the side wall, thus affecting the interior design. In this sense, it is good to know how to install a sliding door.
There are many types of sliding doors on the market today, which can directly affect the installation. The most used in interiors is the single-leaf sliding door, which can be moved horizontally. When it is closed it divides the rooms, and when it is open it is hidden, parallel to the wall. If we learn to install one of these basic sliding doors, it will be easier to assemble any other, so we will explain it step by step below.
1. Prepare the materials and tools
If you are wondering how to make a sliding door, the first thing is to have everything you need in your workspace, so that you do not have to interrupt the assembly to go buy something. Manufacturers these days typically sell a complete kit that includes the guide rails, split stiles, door, and bearings. However, in some cases it is necessary to place rails for sliding doors and special fittings, depending on the door model.
As for the tools, a circular saw, a drill, a sander and a hacksaw are usually enough, but this also varies according to the design of the door and the accessories that the kit you have chosen has. Some instruments such as a tape measure, a spirit level and a combination square are very useful to make a more precise installation.
2. Define the size and weight of the door
For the installation of a sliding door, it is very important to take measures to ensure that it correctly covers the wall frame. If you have a very wide door, you will need a mounting kit with a fairly long rail. Also, it is good to bring the door closer to the space where it will be installed to get an idea of how it will look when the assembly is finished. As for the weight, it is essential that the kit is compatible with the type of door, manufacturers generally place this data in the technical details. For example, if you have a wooden door that weighs 40 kg, a rail with a capacity of 50 kg is sufficient.
3. Check the installation mode
The rail can be installed on the wall or on the ceiling, but this will depend on the kit you choose and your needs. Some models come with holes and brackets to mount directly to the ceiling or wall, while others include brackets that slide into the rail slot for wall mounting.
4. Measure and cut the guide (rail)
If you are going to install a single-leaf sliding door, you should ask for help to hold the guide and mark the holes where you are going to put the screws on the wall with a pencil. It is recommended that the rail exceeds the door frame by about 50 mm. As for the length of the rail, it must be twice the width of the door to be installed and an additional 100 mm must be included for the rail stops that go on both sides. It is necessary to carefully measure the fence with the tape measure before cutting it with the hacksaw.
5. Install the rail
The assembly of the guide is important for the operation of the door, for this reason, it is necessary to follow the manufacturer’s instructions to the letter. However, there are some general recommendations that apply to any type of kit. First of all, it is important to use a spirit level when placing the rail, since an uneven door can cause sliding problems.
On the other hand, we must correctly adjust the rail, so it is good to use wall brackets. As for the plugs, it must be remembered that there are different types, so if the ones that come in the kit are not compatible with the type of wall, it is preferable to purchase others separately. However, the sliding door track you choose should come with all the necessary components.
Once we have the marks where the screws will go, we must open the holes with the drill. It is worth remembering at this point that the size of the drill must match the plugs that we are going to use, since it is important to press them into the wall for a better fit. Next, it is time to place the guide and fix it with the screws.
6. Fix the bearings on the door
The bearings, also called hangers, are what allow the door to slide along the rail. In this sense, it is necessary to mount them on the upper edge of the door, using the brackets and screws that come in the kit. We must place a bearing at each end, ensuring that they are at the same distance from the edge. For greater accuracy, we can use the tape measure.
7. Place the door
To assemble the sliding door we must insert the bearings in the rail at one of the ends. Depending on the weight, you may need help lifting the door and fitting the hangers onto the rail. Then, you must check that the door slides correctly along the rail, to proceed to fix the rail stops, which serve as a locking system at both ends so that the door does not come off the rail.
8. Install the guide on the ground
Sliding doors need a guide at the bottom that is anchored to the floor and must have the thickness of the door plus 2 millimeters, this serves to keep the door inside the rail.