A sliding glass door that won’t lock is not only inviting to criminals, but it’s also a warning that your patio door needs to be serviced.
I’ve listed a few things you can try to solve your non-locking sliding door below:
- Adjust your rollers as necessary.
- A faulty seal
- A filthy latch or lock
- Change the lock.
None of them are difficult, but if you want a more in-depth tutorial on how to fix your sliding glass door by removing it off its track, click here.
Make any necessary adjustments to your rollers.
Make sure the lock is unlocked before adjusting the rollers. Open the door and look for the roller adjustment screw on the bottom of the door. Rotate the door clockwise if you need to raise it. If you need to lower something, travel in the opposite direction. It’s as simple as that.
If you’re not sure if you should go up or down, the lipstick test is recommended. Smear some lipstick on the lock/latch (any color will do, but bright red is preferable) and attempt locking the door. This will tell you if the height of the door does not match the height of the lock.
A faulty seal
If you have an air leak around your door, it’s possible that the door has enlarged just enough that it no longer locks.
Getting some weatherstripping, ideally felt, is the simplest answer. However, if it fits, a foam or D-ring style weatherstripping can work as well.
If you choose a D-ring style or foam, ensure sure your latch/lock has adequate room to function properly. This was a rookie error on my part.
Make sure the door where the weatherstripping will be installed is clean; I usually clean it with an old rag dampened with water and Dawn. Then, once it’s dry, I’ll go back in and wipe it down with an alcohol pad before installing it.
Latch/lock is filthy.
This had already happened to us since the previous owners of the house had neglected to clean up the latch on our door. I removed the handle and lock from the door for a thorough cleaning because it had become so filthy over the years.
To clean a lock, I used a graphite pen to enter the lock and dislodge any debris; if you need to hit a broader area, you may also use WD40.
Changing the lock
I only need a screwdriver to change the lock on my sliding glass door. After doing some research, I believe most doors are the same.
With a Phillips head screwdriver, remove the lock and take it with you to the home improvement store to select a replacement. Instead of struggling to memorize all the dimensions, this will make everything lot easier and faster.
Return home once you have the new part in your hands and are certain it fits the previous one’s specifications. I’d be happy to walk you through the installation instructions for the door lock, but each brand and model has its own set of instructions.
So simply follow the directions till your new lock is installed.
You should discover that locking and unlocking the door is considerably easier now that you have your new lock installed. However, most individuals have trouble moving their sliding doors, so let me offer some guidance on that as well.
How to smoothly glide your sliding door
The following are the tools required for the job:
- Toothbrush (Wire brush)
- Silicone lubricant
Scrape the dirt and other debris from the track with a toothbrush or wire brush. After that, vacuum everything up.
I don’t recommend using WD40 for this because it attracts a lot of dust and debris. Using any form of silicone lubrication, on the other hand, does not attract dust and will last considerably longer on heavy-use items like your door.
Make sure you have some paper towels or old rags on hand before you start spraying the oil on your track. This keeps the lubricant from making your floor slick and reduces the amount of clean-up time. It’s slick, believe me.
Now that you’ve laid out your towels, go ahead and spray the full length of the track. I wouldn’t go overboard with it because too much will merely collect grit.
Keep your door in tip-top shape with these helpful hints.
When it comes to sliding glass doors, how long do they usually last?
Sliding glass doors typically last around 30 years, but some manufacturers have designed doors that last even longer. Sliding doors, on the other hand, last 30 years no matter how you look at it.
Remember to clean and lubricate the track on a regular basis, as well as maintaining the lock on your sliding door clean and working.
How often should you clean your door’s track?
Cleaning the tracks (both top and bottom) on your sliding glass door should be done every time you sweep, mop, or vacuum your house. You don’t need to use any lube; just remove the dirt out of there.
However, I do recommend reapplying the silicone lubricant once a year.
Why shouldn’t I use WD40 to clean the tracks on my sliding door?
WD40 is a petroleum-based lubricant that attracts dirt and dust. If you wipe your door frequently, WD40 or another petroleum-based product will suffice. In addition, WD40 has a better “glide” to it.
However, I never pay close enough attention to the door’s track. That is why I advocate silicone-based products. While silicone lacks the same “glide,” it compensates by remaining cleaned for longer periods of time without assistance.
Because we use the sliding door frequently, its ability to stay on longer between cleanings makes it the best choice for us. Because we let our two dogs in and out all day, they bring in a lot of dirt and debris, which settles in the track.