Wardrobe Door Installation

DEAR MIKE: I would like to replace some beat-up wardrobe doors with some new mirrored sliding wardrobe doors. It looks like the new doors mount a little differently than the old doors. Where should I begin? -- Mark B.

DEAR MARK: The first step is to remove the old doors. Simply lift each door up and swing the bottom of the door out to remove them.

Next, get rid of the old top channel and the bottom track. The top channel will be held in place with screws. Remove the screws and pull out the channel. The bottom track will be held in with screws, glue or concrete nails depending on the flooring. Remove the track and set it aside.

You can measure the opening, or you can simply use the old parts as templates to mark where you need to cut the new parts. Use a hacksaw to cut the parts to length.

Hold the top channel at the front of the closet so that the front of it is flush with the outside wall. Use the provided screws to secure the channel.

The bottom track is a little more difficult. If you a have carpet and you do not have a cutout already, you should cut the carpet so that you can mount the bottom track directly on the floor.

Basically, the bottom track is mounted by first securing a wooden strip to the floor. The track sits on top of this wood strip and is attached to it.

The wooden strip will be offset from the closet's opening. Measure and mark the location for the wooden strip according to the manufacturer's instructions. Cut it to the same length as the bottom track.

To secure the wooden strip, you first need to consider the flooring. If you have a wooden floor, you will attach it using nails (supplied in the kit). If you have a concrete floor, use concrete nails (also supplied).

If you have ceramic tiles, you can mount the strip in one of two ways: Use panel adhesive to glue it down, or drill holes with a masonry bit and insert screw anchors (None of these are included.).

Place the bottom track over the wood strip and secure it using the provided screws.

The last step is to install the doors. Push the plastic top guides onto the top of the door. This will minimize the play and friction as the door slides. Lay the door mirrored side down (on a blanket or carpet so you don't scratch the frame). Turn the adjustment screw on each wheel clockwise until the wheel sticks out by about an inch.

Be careful handling the door because they are flimsy. Tilt the top of the door back and insert it in the rear runner of the top channel. Push it up so that it clears the bottom track and insert the wheels in the rear runner of the bottom track. Repeat for the other door, but this time use the front runners.

You may need to adjust the doors so that when they close, they are flush with the wall. Turn the adjusting screws on the wheels clockwise or counterclockwise to adjust the doors.

Now you can get all dressed up and check yourself out before you hit the town.

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