Repairing a Sliding Glass Door Lock

A bedroom with a sliding glass door.

A sliding glass door lock can be damaged over time but replacing or repairing it can be a very simple task. All you need to do is take the broken sliding glass door lock to your local hardware store to get a replacement lock and handle.

Although there are a lot of varieties for sliding door locks in the market, it will be easy to find one that matches your old locks since all of are very similar to each other. Sliding glass door locks come in two categories: surface mount locks and mortise lock systems.

Surface Mount Locks

Surface mount handles and locks are types of locks that mount on the face of the glass door frame. You can find different models for these glass door locks and one advantage is that most of them all have the same dimensions for mounting so it is easy to find a replacement.

Even if you don’t find the exact same model, chances are that you will find one with the same dimensions meaning you do not have to create a new hole and the new lock can simply be bolted or screwed over the old lock’s hole.

The most common sizing for surface mount locks are 4-15/16" apart. New sizes are coming out in the market and if the dimensions of your damaged surface mount lock are not 4-15/16", you will need to make a new hole for your new lock.

Mortise Lock System

Another variety is the mortise lock system. These types of locks for sliding glass doors are built in the door frame. Most often than not, they are used for glass doors that have aluminum, vinyl, or wooden frames.

Replacement or repair for mortise lock systems are quite difficult to find but common models are used by most manufacturers so they should also be available in your hardware store. Just remember to take note of the exact description and dimensions so that you will get one that will fit your glass door lock system.

Some people find it easier to find a replacement by taking a photograph and taking it to the store to get a new one.

When getting a new mortise lock replacement for your sliding glass door, always take note of the width of the lock, end faceplate, if it is round or square, screw hole size, which is the distance between the centers of the mounting screws, and the manufacturer of your old mortise lock.

These descriptions are important for getting the right type of mortise lock system to replace your damaged ones. There are times that it would just be the cylinder that has to be replaced for the purpose of rekeying your mortise lock so know the extent of the damage of your glass door locks.