Single bottom track sliding door system

Wondering how sliding doors work?

Sliding doors are a great addition to your home decor, and their functionality and stylishness make them different from other types of doors. If you are familiar with sliding doors but are wondering how sliding doors work, we are here to explain it to you.

Whether you want a fantastic view of the outside or need to keep your eyes on your kids and pets in the backyard, sliding doors work wonderfully. Sliding doors come with unique features. They save space, allow natural light to enter your home, open and close with ease, and much more. Placing sliding doors in the right area of your home enhances the functionality and elegance of your property with its beautiful designs.


A sliding door consists of a fixed panel with two hangers on a roller that moves along a track. The panel moves back and forth to create a door opening and closing.  

There are multiple types of sliding doors available. It’s not always easy to make a decision as different types of sliding doors are made up of different materials, designs, and functionalities. So we will try to make things easier for you by presenting some general information about some main types of sliding doors. 

Let’s see the different types of sliding doors:

  • Sliding doors with curtain rods – This sliding door is most popular among the different types of sliding doors available in the market. A sliding door with curtain rods made up of two layers of glass, and that does not take up wall space. This door is open by overlapping the other fixed glass window. These sliding doors are the best fit for outdoor kitchen areas, patios, and gardens.
  • Hanging sliding doors – These sliding doors are attached to a track above the door that slides over the wall. Installation of hanging sliding doors requires enough free wall space that has to be at least the size of the door. 
  • Wall sliding doors – This is an excellent solution if you do not have enough wall space but want to achieve that minimalistic look. These doors are also perfect for wardrobes as the doors disappear into the wall when you open them.

We have discussed some of the common types of sliding doors above. Now we need to look at the materials used to make sliding doors as it plays a vital role in durability. The most common sliding doors usually come with glasses installed in wooden aluminum vinyl or fiberglass frames.

  • Wooden frame – Sliding doors with a wooden frame enhance the look of your home. The wood frame comes in different colors, from rustic to dark and light wood. However, wood can crack and warp easily. That’s why a sliding door with a wooden frame is not recommended to install outdoors or in wet areas, as moisture can damage the wood. 
  • Aluminum frame – Sliding doors with aluminum frames also come in different colors and designs that catch people’s attention and are more resistant to damage than wooden frames. Aluminum is a long-lasting material. That is why sliding doors with aluminum frames are the perfect choice for the outdoors. They can withstand all types of weather conditions. 
  • Vinyl – Sliding doors with this material are also durable. The negative point is that it comes in limited colors and may give the impression of a low-quality product.


You might be familiar with traditional door parts, but there are some differences among their components and functionalities when it comes to modern sliding doors. A little idea about the features of a sliding door helps you to understand how sliding doors work. 

Let’s look at the different components that make a sliding door and help it function. 

  • Latches – latches are used to lock the sliding door. It can be locked with keys or with a twist-action of the lock.
  • Tracks – tracks are present in door frames and provide a place for the sliding rollers. The sliding panel moves along the upper and lower trail. 
  • Rollers – These are the wheels attached to the upper and lower track helping in sliding the door back and forth. Many sliding doors do not have rollers, and they simply glide along the trail. 
  • Stopper – Stoppers are metal rods in sliding doors that prevent the door from sliding at either end. They come in different sizes and are easy to use. You need to place the stopper in the door track and tighten it up to secure it in place.


Sliding doors work by moving along the upper and bottom track fitted in the frame. For the easy movement of panels, sliding doors often have rollers attached to the top and bottom. Lightweight sliding doors such as interior closet doors generally have rulers on the upper track, while heavier sliding doors such as exterior patio doors glide along the bottom track. Exterior sliding doors usually have one fixed panel and one movable panel. 

Rollers are adjustable for easy movement of panels, and plastic tracks should be installed so that the doors stay vertical and aligned on their routes. A variety of latches secures sliding doors, and these latches depend upon the manufacturer and the material used, such as metal, vinyl, or wood. 

Out of different kinds of doors, sliding doors add value to your home, and their working mechanism is simple too. They work horizontally and can be a part of your interior or exterior decor. They are also safe, secure, and easy to move. The benefits that come with sliding doors will compel you to make it a part of your home decor.


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