How to Replace a Sliding Glass Window

Sliding glass windows are easy to replace, as far as the actual removal/installation is concerned.

Sliding windows are easily removed, but they can be heavySliding windows are easily removed, but they can be heavy
When it comes to acquiring a a new glass window, look at the make of the window (which usually comes complete with frame also) and contact the manufacturer regarding replacements--if it's a popular brand, some national DIY stores may carry it also. Most older sliding windows (and some new) have little rollers on the bottom side to help with the sliding; others do not but rely more so on a good fit that allows the window to be pushed easily from side to side.

Remove the screen by pulling it out of position from either the side or bottom. Slide the window so that it is halfway between its open and closed position. Hold the window halfway up on both sides, making sure that you have a good grip (wearing a good pair of work gloves will help). One hand will have to slide in between the stationary window and the sliding window.

Lift the sliding window up until its top hits the inside window frame. The bottom of the sliding window will now be free of the window frame. Pull out the bottom of the sliding window until it is free of the frame. Lower the sliding window (it will now be free of the frame) and place it to one side.

Clean any dirt that has accumulated in the frame, using a window cleaner and a rag. Lift up the new window frame with one hand halfway up on both sides. Push the top of the window up into the window frame (halfway between open and closed positions), while pushing the bottom of the window in over the window frame and into place. Lower the window: the bottom of the window will slide down into the window frame, and the sliding window will be in position. Slide the window from left to right, making sure it runs smoothly. Clean the window on both sides and replace the screen.

Things You Will Need

  • Window cleaner and rag


  • Sliding windows are fairly heavy: stand with feet apart and your body weight balanced before removing the window.
  • Removal of the window screen is to ensure that it's not damaged during the removal/installation of the sliding window. It's not imperative that the screen be removed, but it's recommended.

About the Author

Steve Sloane started working as a freelance writer in 2007. He has written articles for various websites, using more than a decade of DIY experience to cover mostly construction-related topics. He also writes movie reviews for Inland SoCal. Sloane holds a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing and film theory from the University of California, Riverside.