How to hang a closet door

Sep 22, 2010 at 6:57 p.m. ET

Hanging a closet door is a wonderful way to upgrade a bedroom, guestroom, den, or hallway. Not only is it energy efficient, but a closet door improves the decorative appearance of any storage area. Save money by hanging the door yourself, or enlist a helping hand in this home improvement project.

Sliding closet doors

How to hang sliding closet doors

This type of closet door slides on rollers running along a metal track at the top of the closet frame. There are also small guides attached to the floor at the bottom of the doors to keep them in line as they are opened and closed. To replace your existing sliding doors, follow these easy step-by-step instructions.

Step 1: 

Measure your old closet doors and take the measurements to your favorite home improvement store. Find the available sliding closet doors that match your measurements and choose the doors that most closely suit your home's style. Manufactured closet doors come both finished and unfinished, so make certain you select finished if you wish to skip Step 2.

Step 2: 

If you've selected unfinished doors, now is the time to finish them; it is much easier to apply a stain or coat of paint before they're in place. Follow the paint or stain manufacturer's application and drying instructions carefully for the best results.

Step 3:

While your new doors are drying, remove the old closet doors. Detach the floor guides so the doors can swing freely. Keep the floor guides for the new doors, unless they are damaged, then, just lift the doors from the track above and remove.

Although most doors work this way, a few require an extra step. If the doors cannot be removed by simply lifting, feel for a small lever that unlocks the doors from the glide. If there is no locking mechanism, the rollers may need to be aligned with cut-outs in the track before coming free.

Step 4:

Now that the doors are removed, take a screwdriver and detach the track from the top of the closet frame.

Step 5: 

Compare your new track with the old one. If the new track is too long, mark and remove the excess length with a hacksaw. The new track needs to be the same length as the old one to fit the closet's doorframe.

Step 6:

Mount the new track in the same location as the old one with the screws provided with the new door assembly. Firmly tighten the screws so the screw heads are seated flat against the track's upper surface to prevent the heads from interfering with the doors sliding action.

Step 7: 

If the rollers are not pre-mounted on your new doors, attach them to the inside top edge of the doors according to the manufacturer's instructions with the hardware provided.

Step 8:

Hang the finished doors in the new track and replace the floor guides.

Up next: How to hang bifold closet doors >>

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