The housing market is hot right now, but you know what is even hotter? Sliding doors. Research shows that at least one door in every new home built will be a sliding door, and it’s easy to see why.
A sliding door on average saves 10 square feet of valuable space that a hinged door takes up. Another benefit to sliding doors (other than just saving space) is the upgraded interior design look it gives to the room it’s installed in. You go from your plain, flat panel white interior doors to a wide range of style options: wood barn doors, steel doors, live edge panels, etc. If it can hang, we can add closet door hardware to it to make it work in your space.
3 Things to Consider When Choosing Your Sliding Closet Door Hardware
- Take Measurements
- Determine Finish and Style
3 Things to Consider When Choosing Your Sliding Closet Door Hardware
1. Take MeasurementsTo begin, you’ll need to measure where you want to install or replace a traditional hinge door with a sliding door. This step will require the following tools:
- Tape measure
- Step stool
Begin by measuring the width of your door frame. If the door doesn’t have trim, measure the width inside the door frame and add two to four inches to this measurement. If your door does have trim, measure from the outer edge of the trim to the other outer edge of the trim, again adding two to four inches. Adding these extra inches will give you the proper dimensions you will need for the overhang on your interior door when closed.
How to Measure Closet Door Height
Typically, you will want six inches of clearance above the door to install the sliding door hardware, However, you can buy low clearance sliding door hardware if you don’t have the six inches of clearance. This can provide a minimalistic look while still providing the sliding door function.
Many barn doors are mounted between the frame and the ceiling, but you can mount it right above the door frame if that is more your style. Personal preference will play a part in what door you go with and how high you can mount it. Whatever you choose, be sure to measure one-inch off the floor for the height you want to mount the hardware to determine the door length you will need.
How to Measure Sliding Closet Door Track
Once you have your door measurements, it’s time to measure for the track. This measurement is easy—all you need to do is take your door width and double it for a single sliding door. If you have double sliding doors, you will need to times the width of one door by four.
It’s also worth mentioning that it’s important to measure the area against the wall where the door will rest to make sure you have enough space. Barn doors need enough room against the wall (or inside the wall for a pocket door) to “hide” when fully open. You’ll want to make sure there are no obstructions in the way, like light switches for barn doors, or plumbing and electrical for pocket doors.
You can also make your track longer than the minimum requirement if you’d like more space for the door to slide open or just for aesthetic purposes.
2. Select Finish and StyleOnce you’ve measured to determine what size door you need and selected the door you are going to buy, it’s time to think about the finish and style of your hanging closet door hardware.
There are surprisingly more options than you would think. Of course, you can always go with the classic flat track hardware, which is what most people envision when they imagine the door hardware kit. It’s a style so versatile it will work with any color, finish, or material of door you choose to install it with.
If you want something more eye-catching, modern hardware made of stainless steel definitely gives a door a bit of wow factor. You can select something with smooth clean lines, like the Bella stainless steel hardware kit, or spring for something more steampunk and fun, like the Chronos sliding door hardware kit. There is even the possibility of hardware like the Odin glass mount if you are installing a sliding glass door.
Choosing a finish and style will be something that is unique to your personal preferences and budget, but we can assure you there is no shortage of styles and options to choose from.
Function will be based on what type of door you select for your closet. For a single, sliding track closet door, you can buy pretty much any type of hardware. But if you want a bifold door, double wardrobe doors, or a glass panel closet door, you will need to make sure the hardware is made to support the door properly while providing the function you need.
For example, glass sliding door hardware and bifold closet door hardware are two entirely different sliding door systems. There is also bypass closet door hardware, which is a dual track built so that the doors can slide past one another. Be sure to do your research to make you are buying the proper hardware for the door or doors you have selected.
Do Sliding Closet Doors Need a Bottom Track?While not required, there are benefits to adding a bottom track to sliding closet doors. Having a bottom track can help ensure smooth movement when opening and closing the door, and depending on the weight of your door, a bottom track can help stabilize any potential wiggling and sound caused when the door is used. It can also be helpful for keeping the door on the main track to avoid derailing.
How to Install Sliding Closet Door HardwareYou don’t necessarily have to hire help to install sliding closet doors. Sliding closet door hardware usually comes with installation instructions. If you are comfortable following tutorials and doing home improvement projects, it is easily something you can install on your own!
Here is a quick overview of the steps you will need to take when installing a sliding closet door hardware kit or sliding door track system. Please bear in mind that this overview is for installing traditional closet barn door hardware only—pocket doors and bypass doors will come with different instructions.
1. Measure the ClosetFirst, you will need to decide if you are mounting your door or doors on the outside of your closet. If you are mounting on the outside, simply use the measurements you determined in the steps above.
If, however, you want to mount your doors inside the closet as bypass doors, you will need to measure the height and width of the inside of the closet to get the track and door dimensions. This track will be mounted on the interior frame of the closet, and will be mostly hidden from view. It is typically very simple in its design, so if you’re wanting something more stylish and Pinterest-worthy, we recommend going with an exterior drywall mount.
2. Buy a Barn Door and Hardware KitThe door and the hardware kit aren’t one-size-fits-all, so you’ll need to use the measurements you took to order a door that fits the space, and the necessary track for the install.
3. Mount the Sliding Door TrackUsing a step stool and drill, mount the sliding door hardware using the predetermined drill holes, screws, and installation steps provided to you with the closet door hardware. If utilizing a bottom track, you will need to install it after the door is hung so you can use it as a guide to measure and mark where the track needs to go.
4. Attach Hardware to Door
Now, take the hardware for the sliding closet door and attach it directly to the door of your choice, using the steps and guidelines given to you with your hardware kit. Depending on the door you purchased, yours may or may not have pre-drilled screw holes for the hardware. If the pre-drilled screw holes are not included, the manual will walk you through how to measure and properly place the hardware in the right spot.
If you are adding decorative elements, like a door knob, the center of the handle should be about 36 inches from the bottom of the door.
5. Hang DoorAsk a buddy for help with this step! Then, lift the door on each side and gently align the wheels with the track. Once it is hanging on the track, test the door for smooth movement and proper alignment of the hardware and track.
This is when you will mark off and install the bottom track for stability. Once that is marked off, screwed it into place and double-check the door movement again. It should easily and smoothly glide along the track and stop at the door stoppers.
One of the most popular areas to use a sliding door in the home is for closet doors. A sliding closet door is a great way to open up space while allowing easier access to commonly used items. It also adds a decorative element to the bedroom. While closet doors don’t typically require security features like a barn door lock, you can definitely add one if needed.
Sliding Closet Doors Save Space While Adding Function
Installing closet sliding doors is the perfect way to update your bedroom while increasing its functionality and style. Whether you're adding a sliding closet door for the aesthetic or for the functionality and added floor space, it's guaranteed to improve the look and feel of your home.
If a sliding closet door sounds like something you’d like to add to your home, consider one of BarnDoorHardware.com’s many sliding closet door hardware systems. We have a sliding closet door for every function and style, and our experts are standing by to help you find the perfect sliding closet door for your space. Call us today at 801-919-3085.