how to take closet doors off track

As someone who’s been around the DIY block a few times, I can tell you that removing closet doors from their tracks isn’t as daunting as it may seem. Whether you’re looking to give your space a quick refresh or need to access the depths of your closet, taking the doors off the tracks is a task you can tackle with a bit of know-how.

There are various types of closet doors, from sliding to bi-fold, each with its unique removal process. But don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. I’ll walk you through the steps for each one, ensuring you can confidently handle this task no matter what type of doors you’re dealing with.

How to Take Closet Doors off Track

Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s dive into the specifics. From enhancing accessibility to creating an open concept, removing a closet door isn’t as formidable as it seems.

Enhancing Accessibility

First things first, why would one want to take a closet door off its track? One reason is to enhance accessibility. Closet doors often obstruct access to the corners of a closet. This can cause difficulty when trying to store or retrieve items.

By taking the door off its track, you can gain easy access to every inch of your space. Here’s a quick guide on how you can do it:

  • Identify your type of door: Knowing exactly what kind of door we are dealing with is paramount. The removal process varies quite significantly between sliding doors, folding doors, and pivot doors.
  • Equip yourself: Ensure you’ve got gloves (trust me, they can help prevent unpleasant splinters) and a sturdy step ladder for those hard-to-reach top tracks.
  • Unhinge the door: This usually involves lifting and tilting the door, then pulling it off its track. Just be careful – you don’t want the door to fall on you!
  • Store the door safely: Once the door’s off, remember to store it in a safe place where it won’t get damaged or become an obstruction.

Tools and Materials Needed

Achieving a sleek and modern look for your closet relies heavily not just on creativity but also the right set of tools. Without them, taking your closet doors off their tracks could turn from a simple task into a tough ordeal. Here’s a list of the common tools and materials you’ll need in most cases.


A screwdriver is your best friend when it comes to removing closet doors. This versatile tool is useful for detaching screws that hold the door hardware in place. Do not forget to match the screwdriver head with the type of screw used in your closet door. For instance, for a Phillips head screw, you’ll need a Phillips head screwdriver. It’s always wise to have both flat-head and Phillips-head screwdrivers handy.



Next up, a lightweight hammer could come in handy. Its use might not be obvious at first, but you’ll be glad you had it around. Hammers are mainly used to gently tap the pins out of the hinges. Remember, when using a hammer, start light, and increase force gradually if necessary. We’re removing a closet door, not demolishing it!

Pry Bar

The next device on your must-have list is a pry bar. Removing closet doors, especially those stubbornly stuck in their tracks, can be frustrating. The pry bar is here to save your day. It’s a sturdy hand tool that can help you lift the doors and remove them from the tracks. This way, it maintains both your patience and the door’s integrity.

Allen Wrench

An allen wrench, also known as an allen key or a hex key, might not seem vital, but you’ll be surprised how often it’s needed. Some closet doors or their hardware are assembled using hex screws, and your regular screwdriver will not do. That’s where the Allen wrench comes in. It fits right into these hexagonal inlets and allows you to unscrew easily.

Drop Cloth

Finally, always remember to protect your workspace. A drop cloth or an old sheet can do the job. Put it under and around the area you’re working on. Renovations and improvements can get messy real quick and old paint chips, dust and metal slivers are things you don’t want lodged in your carpet or wooden floors.

Always maintain safety and remember, you’re enhancing your space, not wrecking it. Now, with everything in place, you’re all set to successfully take your closet doors off track.