How to Install a Sliding Glass Dog Door

When it comes to installing a pet door for your dog, you don’t have to cut a hole in your own door! 

Instead, you may want to consider installing a sliding glass dog door, which requires just a few modifications.

In this article, we have a step by step guide on how to install a sliding glass dog door to help you give your dog the freedom they need using simple effort on your part.

What is a Sliding Glass Dog Door?

A sliding glass dog door is basically a regular glass door panel but there’s a pet flap fitted into it.

Sliding glass dog doors are a wonderful solution for renters as they won’t need to punch a hole in a wall or a door. 

You just insert the panel into your door frame, then you can use your slider door normally while leaving room for your dog to walk in and out. It’s a super easy DIY process, so you don’t need to hire a professional.

In addition to being a great option for renters, a sliding glass dog door also looks nice inside your sliding door and won’t increase your energy bill.

How to Install a Sliding Glass Dog Door?

Installing a sliding glass dog door means you’ll be inserting a panel into an existing sliding door track. The new panel features glass on top and a pet door flap at the bottom.

The installed panel acts as a partition that divides the entire sliding door into two parts: one is the stationary panel with a dog flap, and the other is the pre-existing slider panel.

Once you install a sliding glass dog door panel, the slider of the door should slide in its track against the panel without any issues. Keep in mind that the track for the door is shortened because of the added panel.

Here’s a simple step by step guide for installing a glass dog door:

1. Check the Design of Your Existing Door

Your first order of business is to check out the design of your existing sliding door. You need to measure its track and identify whether the track is a monorail or not.

If the track of your door is not a monorail, the installation is going to be a bit simpler because you can easily adjust the panel. But if the track is a monorail, you may need to purchase monorail adaptors.

2. Measure Your Dog

Choosing the correct pet flap size is crucial to properly accommodate your dog. After all, you don’t want to end up with a pet door that’s too big or too small for your canine to walk through.

Here’s how you should measure your pet:

  • Measure how tall your dog is from its shoulder to its feet then add 1 inch to it.
  • Take the measurements of the widest part of your dog’s body then add 2 inches to it.

Correct measurements will ensure that the flap will comfortably fit your dog through while preventing larger animals from entering your home.

3. Position a Tester Flap on the Door

Now, move on to cut a piece of cardboard as a tester according to the measurements you just took. 

This will give you a good idea of how accurate your measurements are and will let you visualize where you’re going to place the flap in the sliding door.

Place the flap in a corner spot so it doesn’t interfere with the functioning of the sliding door. Remember, this spot should be easy to find for your dog.

4. Measure the Sliding Door

Next, you should figure out the height of the dog door panel that’ll match your slider.  

Use a tape measure to take measurements of the door and find suitable measurements for the panel you’ll install. The size of the panel will include the width of the flap you’re going to install in it.

  • Note that after you install an additional panel for the dog door, the total area of your sliding door is going to decrease.

Double-check all the measurements and once you have them ready, you can buy or custom-order a panel with your specifications. Choose a panel that appeals to your style and is appropriate for your barking buddy.

5. Dry Fit the New Panel

After you receive the new panel, don’t jump right into installing it. It’s best if you dry-fit the panel first to see if it needs any tweaking. This will also help you picture the final look of your door after the modification.

6. Insert the Panel

If everything goes according to plan, your new panel should be a perfect size. So now, it’s time to fit the panel in your sliding door. 

  • First, place the panel in the bottom track and position it in the area you want it to. 
  • Then, twist the screws on the bottom part to stabilize the panel so you can position it from the top. 

Sliding glass dog doors typically come with some sort of pressure system towards the top end, from where it expands and fits into the height of the track. 

  • Once you have your panel positioned correctly, tighten the remaining screws so it doesn’t move.

Mostly, the panels do not require any extra tools to install or remove. You can set them up just as easily as you can pop them out of the track.

7. Complete the Installation 

The very last step to finalize the installation process is adding any insulation that may come with the panel, such as weatherstripping. Follow the attached directions and once you’re done, you can step back and admire your work.

Wrap Up

There you have it, a simple step by step guide on how to install a sliding glass dog door. The addition of a dog door panel in your sliding door is an excellent solution for giving your canine the freedom to come and go without the hassle of cutting your walls.