If you want to install a garage door, you have a wealth of styles to choose from, especially if you're going to change up from the common overhead/roll-up doors. Side sliding doors are elegant and work like conventional barn doors – the door hangs from rollers which move sideways along runners or a track to open and close the space. This article discusses some of the benefits, challenges and maintenance requirements of sliding garage doors.
As a simply-structured door, sliding doors can be made from many materials, such as timber, steel, and even glass-reinforced plastic.
Depending on your style or functional requirements, you can create single, double or bi-parting sliding doors. In addition, there are limitless options regarding design and finishes, since you have fewer restrictions on size, thickness, and weight (important with overhead doors)
According to the space you have, you can place the runners/tracks inside or outside the wall of your garage to best suit your function. It is also possible to create sectional portions with hinges, which facilitate bending around corners
Side-sliding doors occupy virtually no space, compared with canopy or sectional doors for instance, and you can open the door as thin as you want, e.g., to create a person's entryway
Additionally, because of the limited movement and no lifting, you can have a larger garage door without affecting its functionality, even when using automatic operation
In harsh weather conditions, if your sliding doors are very heavy, you may have some difficulty operating them. Therefore, create a balance that enables you to easily work the door manually or with a remote all-year-round.
Also, when installing sliding doors, it's imperative to ensure that tracks/runners are placed on the completely level ground. Depending on the state of your garage entrance, this may require additional work. Also, the very nature of sliding doors means you have to do more to ensure weatherproofing and insulation. If you live in places with weather extremes, talk to your contractor before installing sliding doors.
Safe handling and maintenance
Just like other garage doors, regular cleaning, inspection, and maintenance will keep your door in good shape. In addition, like other garage doors, sliding door repairs should always be handled by a professional to avoid the potential for injury. This is important if your doors are heavier than standard size.
Before carrying out any maintenance, ensure that the automatic opener is disconnected from electricity supply to prevent personal injury. In addition, make sure the battery component is deactivated so that it won't automatically engage while you're working.
Lubrication is the most important maintenance task for these garage doors. You need to grease tracks and runners, roller bearings, roller shaft, hinge pins, lock (where applicable) and rubbers. In addition, you can use car wax to protect door panels. Lubrication should be done professionally unless you have good knowledge or mechanics and proper handling. Finally, schedule professional inspections 1-4 times a year (according to the frequency of use) to ensure damage is caught and repaired early.