A week ago I explained how to measure your existing moving glass door so you can order the plastic replacement door. This week My goal is to go over the steps required to eliminate the old moving door before installing the new door.
First, you have to eliminate the moving panel and the stationary panel. The vast majority of doors out there have the moving panel on the inside half of the track, and the stationary panel is on the exterior. Whatever the case in your particular door, the exterior panel has to come out first. To remove the fixed panel, you need to eliminate the sill cap that button snaps into the bottom track and runs from the fixed panel aside jamb where the moving panel locks. Force a screwdriver into the anti-wrinkle and pry the cap up. Then, look for screws on the inside side jamb holding the fixed panel in place. These screws prevent someone from spying in the sill cap and pulling out the fixed panel in order to gain entry into the home. In addition to the side jamb, be sure to check across the top header and bottom track for screws there as well. Once all the screws have been removed, you need to pull the fixed panel away from the medial side jamb. You can start by simply getting the medial side railroad of the fixed panel and pulling as hard as you can. If you’re lucky, the panel will pop free. Then you can lift the panel up as far as it will type in the top funnel and swing the bottom away from the track, and eliminate the panel.
Now, I said “if you’re lucky”, because in most cases the panel will be stuck in the side jamb, the bottom track, or both. Usually, you’re going to have to use a pry bar to ease the fixed panel before it will slide out of the side jamb. Once the fixed panel is out, removal of the moving panel is usually easier. Just lift up and swing the bottom away from the track, then eliminate the panel. Sometimes the bottom rollers will stop the bottom from dogging out of the track. If you do, you will need to find the roller adjustment hole in the bottom corners of the moving panel. Put a screwdriver into this hole and turn the prop counterclockwise to bring the roller as far up into the bottom of the moving panel as possible. This should allow the slider to come out.
Now, you want to remove all the screws from the side jambs, top header, and bottom track. Then, take a pry bar and get it under the bottom track about in the center. Pry up until the track is separated from the floor. The next step will depend on whether your old frame is nailed to the house frame, or simply screwed in. Whether it’s screwed in, then the frame should now be loose in the opening, since you removed all of the screws. You just need to remove whatever inside Jamb expo trim there can be around the door frame. This type of frame should come out. If your door is nailed to the house frame, you will have to do a bit more work. Use a hacksaw to cut the track in half, approximately in the center. Start with either half and improve the cut piece up towards the side jamb prior to the track piece stands between from the side jamb. Do the same principle to the partner.
So, now you have to eliminate the side jambs. For you to do this without damaging the exterior material that is all around the entranceway frame. Take a heavy chisel and pound it into the crack between the frame and exterior material, whether it’s stucco, siding, etc. Start towards the bottom 6 in . first. What you want to do is pull the nail termin away from the nails holding it in place. So, once the chisel is pounded through the metal frame, pry away from the medial side wall. The heavier and longer the chisel, the more leverage you will have. You will hear the frame “pop” without any the nail. There will be several nails holding each jamb in place, so you want to start towards the bottom and work your way to the top corner. Once you get the bottom third loose, many times you can grab the jamb with your hands and pull all of those other nails free as you increase. When you get to the top corner, work the jamb free. Do both jambs, then do the top. Sometimes the top has no nails, or just one in the center, so it will come down pretty easily. Be sure to wear safety glasses and a dust mask when doing this job, particularly when removing the top header.
At this point you are ready to install the new door. The installation procedure is slightly different, depending on whether you’re installing a retrofit style frame or a replacement frame. We will discuss both procedures next week.