How to Secure Exterior Sliding Glass Doors How to Secure Exterior Sliding Glass Doors

What You'll Need
Level
Shims
Galvanized 2 Inch Screws
Drill
Caulking
Caulking Gun

Exterior sliding glass doors are very popular among homes where a new deck is being built. This exterior glass sliding door not only provides access to and from the deck, or patio, but also provides plenty of light. Installing this type of door is a fairly straightforward process and well within the skill set of a do it yourself homeowner. The key to securing exterior sliding glass doors is to make sure they are level first. If the glass sliding doors are not level they will stick and be hard to open and close. Here are some steps to think about when securing exterior sliding glass doors:

Step 1: Remove Debris from Door Opening

Before setting the sliding glass door into the opening make sure all of the debris is removed. This is usually in the form of scraps of wood, saw dust, or other small items that have been dropped during the cutting out of the hole. Sweep up all of this debris before you set the door in place.

Step 2: Apply Bead of Caulking

Lay a bead of adhesive caulking around the entire opening for the sliding glass door. This must be a continuous bead around the opening to make sure there is full contact and no air gaps.

Step 3: Set  Door In Place

If you have a friend close by, you will want to get their help. Carefully carry the sliding glass door to the opening and set it in place. Place the bottom section into the opening first and square it up with the caulking. Then lift the door up and into position.

Step 4: Level Door

Exterior sliding glass doors must be level before you secure them into place. Set the level on both the horizontal and the vertical. Being able to set a level in each of these positions is a big help as you do not have to continually check each one as you make adjustments.

Step 5: Place Shims in Position

Shims are small beveled pieces of wood, or metal, that are used to level off a window or a door. They are wedge shaped so you can easily slide them into the space. Check the level of the door and place shims around it to make sure it is perfectly plumb and level.

Step 6: Secure Door to Opening

Once the shims are placed, and the door is level, you can then secure it into its opening. Start at one corner of the door and drive in a 2 inch galvanized screw with your drill. It is also recommended that you use a drive extension sleeve so you are able to keep the drill straight as you drive the screw in. This will keep the screw straight as it is driven into the sash and wood.

Step 7: Continue Securing

With the first screw into position, continue driving the screws into the door sash. Alternate from each side and corner until they are all in place. Most exterior sliding glass doors have holes for the screws so there is no guesswork as to where they go. Cut the shims so they are flush with the door and install the trim around it.

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