Signs That Your Sliding Doors Need to Be Replaced

Sliding door installations at home can revitalise your living space, offering natural light, air and an ability to extend your property so that it’s entirely connected with the outdoors. Sliding patio doors can open straight into your garden space and put you back in touch with nature!

Sliding doors

Sliding Doors | When To Replace Them?

As suggested, sliding patio doors can make a wonderful addition to your home, connecting the indoors with the outdoors. But what happens when they need replacing? In this helpful guide, we provide a list of key signs you may need to replace your sliding doors, as well as offer vital maintenance tips to aid durability and ensure they remain clean, safe and in working order for the long term.

Sticky Doors

The smooth operation of your sliding doors should be a given; but in some cases, you may begin to notice a decline in speed, smoothness and the ease in which you can open your sliding patio doors over time. If you’re struggling to open, close or correctly latch your sliding doors so that they lock effectively, this could be a sign they need replacing. Sticky doors are typically a result of dirt and debris build-up in your tracks, which can be easily rectified with simple maintenance or cleaning, but it may also be a sign of a more serious issue.

Sliding doors that are sticking may be a result of improper installation, issues with your tracks, or excess weathering. In this case, it’s highly likely you will need to replace your sliding doors.

Excess Condensation

For the most part, a build-up of condensation appearing on the exterior of your windows is a fairly normal, mundane eventuality, but should you begin to notice trapped moisture occurring between the door panes, this could be a sign of a more troubling issue. This is caused by your sliding door's seal, which is likely to have deteriorated over time, or potentially broken completely.

Should this happen, your door will no longer be insulated which will therefore lead to a build-up of moisture and condensation between your glazing, causing the glass to appear foggy. In the event this occurs, you should consider glass replacement as soon as possible, or else risk the expense of completely replacing your sliding door system.

Strange Noises

A fully operational sliding patio door should be smooth, slick and most of all, quiet. Should you begin to notice unusual noises emanating from your sliding doors, this could be a sign of a potentially serious issue. Sliding doors that squeak or emit loud noises when opening or shutting may be related to an issue with your track, typically as a result of dirt and debris build-up, which can be easily amended with simple cleaning and maintenance carried out regularly.

However, should you clean your tracks and the strange noises persist, this could be a more pressing concern which may even be related to a mechanical issue with your tracks, roller misalignment or damage to your interior/exterior frame. Damage to your sliding door frame can leave you exposed to all sorts of issues, from excess condensation to increased energy bills, due to a downturn in efficiency. In this case, you will likely need to have your sliding doors replaced.

Visible Damage

As suggested, damage to your sliding door frame, ranging from minor scratches and marks to more serious issues such as roller misalignment is one of the main reasons why people choose to replace their sliding patio doors. Roller misalignment is typically caused by sliding your doors open on a warped or obstructed track, leading to your doors coming out of alignment with the track itself. Though this may often be a result of dirt and debris build-up, warped or extremely damaged tracks are serious and will inevitably lead to a replacement of your sliding doors.

Increased Drafts

As expected, damage and deterioration play a part in the downfall of our sliding doors' insulation and efficiency levels leading to both a build-up of excess condensation and an increase in both hot and cold drafts entering your property. A draft entering your home could be a result of a loose seal somewhere in the system, which will make your property less efficient than it ordinarily would be. In this case, it will take much more energy to adequately heat your home, increasing your energy bills, whilst in hot conditions, air conditioning will find its way out of your property and lead to the same financial problem.

Sliding Doors | Essential Maintenance

An issue with your sliding patio doors needn’t always result in a complete replacement, instead, it’s important you first carry out inspections and maintenance works on your sliding doors, to ensure they are clean and fully operational. Below, we outline some simple maintenance tips for prolonging the life of your sliding doors.


A simple and highly effective maintenance measure you can enforce to prolong the life of your sliding patio doors is regular cleaning. Wiping down marks, condensation build-up, dust and grime from your windows will have them looking their best without much effort. Simply grab a cloth and a generic glass cleaner and wipe down your windows!

Equally, you should aim to wipe down your exterior patio doors at least on a bi-monthly basis, to keep them looking clean and to prevent damage caused by weathering on the exterior side. This can be easily carried out with a duster, followed by a wipe-down with warm soapy water. You should avoid using harsh chemicals when wiping down your sliding doors, as this may damage the finish.

Finally, you should inspect your sliding door tracks, as these can be prone to a build-up of a whole host of debris, dust and dirt. Sliding patio tracks are prone to this issue, if not maintained regularly, so be sure to wipe them down with soapy water when required. We recommend using a hoover to remove excess debris, before using a butter knife to clean grooves or an old toothbrush for tight areas; don’t be afraid to get on your knees to dig out any debris stuck in these hard-to-reach places!


Unless made from aluminium, lubricating your tracks is a necessary maintenance measure in preventing your sliding doors from sticking and becoming difficult to open. You should always clean your tracks first before you lubricate them, as this may cause greater issues. In fact, should your tracks be particularly dirty or difficult to open, you may wish to remove the sliding doors first before you clean and subsequently lubricate your tracks.

As suggested, you should avoid lubricating aluminium sliding door tracks, as this will likely lead to a build-up of gunk that will block your rollers and lead to mobility issues.


No matter the maintenance work you carry out, (or how regularly you do so), a time will eventually come when you will need to replace your sliding doors. This can be carried out in several different ways, from replacing worn-out rollers on your sliding door tracks, to replacing worn-out weatherstripping, which will ensure your property is properly insulated all year round. In many cases, you may need a simple commercial glass replacement for your sliding doors, should they be damaged or look past their best.

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