How to remove shower doors & tracks

Written by kelly schuler
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How to remove shower doors & tracks
The hardest part about installing a shower door is removing the old one. (View of Hotel Bathroom image by TekinT from Fotolia.com)

Shower doors wear out naturally with years of use and will need replacing. The hardest part about installing new shower doors may be removing the old shower doors and tracks. The tub and tile caulking sealant used to seal the door tracks from water leaks hardens like concrete over time and becomes difficult, though not impossible, to remove. The whole door and track removal process should take only a few hours for the average do-it-yourselfer.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • Screwdriver
  • Plastic putty knife
  • Tile cleaner
  • Scouring pad

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Remove the shower doors from inside the shower. Standing in the shower, grasp the inside shower door with both hands halfway up on the both sides. Lift the door straight up and tilt the base of the door toward you while leaning the top of the door out of its track. Carefully lower the door and remove from the bathroom. Lift the outside door up, tilt the base in and pull the top out at the same time; this will detach the outer door from its track.

  2. 2

    Lift the top shower door track that rests on the two outer wall brackets straight up and off. The top track is general not attached to the side brackets by mechanical means and should easily come right off.

  3. 3

    Unscrew the mounting anchors securing the door wall tracks. A standard shower door has three screws holding each wall track to the shower walls. Use a screwdriver to remove the anchors.

  4. 4

    Separate the wall and bottom tracks from the tile wall and threshold by removing the tub and tile caulk holding them in place. Use a plastic putty knife to scrape all the visible caulk away from the wall and bottom tracks. Pull each rail away from its wall; this may take some effort. Remove the bottom shower track from the threshold in the same manner.

  5. 5

    Clean the old tub and tile caulk off the walls and threshold. Using a plastic putty knife, scrape off the caulking. This can take some time depending on the age of the caulk. Use a high-quality tub and tile cleaning agent and a scouring pad to finish removing any caulk residue.

Tips and warnings

  • Use a blow dryer to soften the caulking for easier removal.
  • Most shower tracks and hardware are made of aluminium and can be recycled.
  • Dispose of the doors responsibly.
  • Shower door glass is sturdy but easily broken.
  • Do not use metal tools to remove the shower door hardware or caulking; you can scar the tile and tub surfaces.

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