Installing a Dog Door in a Sliding Glass Door
Installing a dog door for your pet doesn't always mean cutting a hole in your door or wall! Dog doors can be easily fitted into existing sliding glass doors with just a few modifications. Sliding door dog doors have many benefits:
- Minimal modification to existing slider
- Great option for renters
- Looks great inside your sliding door
- Won't increase your energy bill
Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about a dog door in a sliding glass door, including installation!
1. What is a Sliding Glass Door Pet Door?
Commonly known as the patio panel pet door, dog doors in sliding glass doors offer a simple yet effective solution. Learning how to install a doggie door in a sliding glass door is a super easy DIY process, no need to hire a professional! These tips for installing a dog door insert in slider tracks should help guide the process. The dog door you wish to install can be any size so it accommodates your pet. You will no longer have to make a hole through your wall or break a door down when you install a pet door insert in sliding glass door.
When installing a pet door in a glass door, a panel is inserted into the sliding door track. The new panel that is inserted has glass on top and a pet door flap at the bottom. Once you install a doggie door in a glass door, the slider of the door slides in its track against the sliding glass pet door panel. The track for the door is shortened because of the additional panel inserted. Screen doors will still function normally with the doggy door panel inserted.
There are a number of custom options for irregular sliding door track heights. The Dragon Custom Single Flap Panel and Dragon Custom Double Flap Panel are two affordable options. For cats, check out the Custom Whiskers & Windows Sliding Glass Cat Door.
Have a vinyl sliding glass door? The Custom Endura Flap Severe Weather Sliding Glass Dog Door is a great option for short vinyl sliding doors.
You can also have a pet door installed directly into the glass of your sliding glass door.
2. Check the Design of Your Door
The first step for sliding glass dog door installation is to check your sliding door and measure the track of your door. You have to see if the track your door is sliding in is a monorail or not. It is a bit easier when the track is not a monorail, as the panel can easily be adjusted. However, if the track of your door is a monorail, you we have monorail adaptors available. The inserted panel forms a partition that divides the whole door into two parts. One being the stationary panel with a pet door, and the other being the pre-existing slider panel of your door.
Sliding glass pet door panels can also be installed in double door sliders. Installation can work the same way. In order for the panel insert to remain secure and stable, you will need to make one of your sliders stationary. In essence, you will only be allowed to slide and walk through 1 of your two sliders.
2. Measure Your Pet
It’s important that you select the correct flap size for your pet! You don’t want to end up with a dog door that is too small or too big for your pet.
To measure your pet, you should take measurements of the widest part of your pet’s body and add about 2″ to it. For the length, measure how tall your pet is from its shoulder to its feet and add about 1″ to it. These measurements will ensure that the flap is large enough to comfortably let your dog through. It will also ensure that no larger animals from the outside can enter into your home through the flap.
3. Position the Flap on the Door
Next, you should cut a piece of cardboard as a tester that will give you a good idea where you are going to place the flap in your sliding door. You should place the flap in a corner area that will not disrupt the functioning of the sliding door. The spot where you place the flap should also be a convenient spot for your pet to find.
4. Measure the Sliding Door
The next step is to find the height of the door that will match your slider. After you install an additional panel for the dog door, the area of your door is going to decrease. Take the measurements of the door with a tape measure and find measurements for the panel you will install. The size of the panel will also incorporate the width of the flap you are going to install in it. Many brands carry sizes small to extra large to fit pets of all sizes.
After you're done taking all the measurements, you can order a panel with your specifications and the panel of your choice. At Pet Doors, there is an extensive collection of sliding door panels that you can use for your sliding door. Choose the one that fits your style and is okay for your pet.
5. Dry Fit the Panel
Soon after you have ordered the panel, you will receive the same one from Petdoors.com. Before installing the panel, dry-fit it to see if any corrections are needed. Dry fitting the panel will help you get a good picture of how your door will look like after the modification.
6. Fit the Panel In
If everything is as planned and the panel you got is perfect, it is time to fit the panel in your sliding door. Place the panel in the bottom track and place it in the spot you want it to. Twist the screws from the bottom part so it is stable and you can position it from the top.
The panel for the sliding door comes with some type of pressure system towards the top end, from where it expands and fits in the height of the track. Mostly, the panels do not require any extra tools to fit. These panels are perfect for vacation home or rentals because they can easily be popped out of the track if you want to remove them! Once you have positioned your panel perfectly, tighten the screws and fix it in the spot so it doesn’t move.
7. Finalize the Installation
Once you fit the panel in your sliding door track, you are almost done with all the work. Install any insulation or any other material that may come with the panel such as weather stripping. Follow the steps carefully and you will have a new patio panel in your sliding glass door.
The addition of a dog door in the sliding glass door is an excellent option for giving your pet outdoor access. Instead of cutting your walls to accomodate a dog door, a patio panel gives your dog the freedom to come and go without all the hassle.
There are many kinds of panels that may be installed in your sliding door, but they all typically follow the same procedure with a few changes. All you need to do is pick the best one for you!
For energy efficiency we highly recommend the Endura Flap Thermo Panel 3e. Manufactured by Patio Pacific, this energy efficient panel features dual pane, low e glass and a high-quality, polyolefin polymer flap. The Endura sliding patio door comes in a wide range of sizes to function as anything from a cat flap in patio doors to a large dog door, depending on which size you select.
Visit PetDoors.com to our view our full selection of sliding glass pet doors to choose the option that works best for you and your pet!