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The track which my screen door slides on has weep holes. One of them finally gave way, leaving a gap ( see photos). I cannot find this track style anywhere that I, as a general consumer, have looked. How can I get this fixed or fix it myself? I prefer to not have to replace the entire assembly if I can help it.

Is there, perhaps, a filler of some sort?

I'm currently searching on "sliding door track rail cover".

full track

broken to scale unbroken to scale

Click for full size image


Repaired

Based on the selected answer, here is the repair using multiple tiny clippings of aluminum from a can of dog food and judicious application of JB Weld. The hold is extremely strong when pushed and the roll-over is fine. There is no longer a weep hole here. While I did coat the piece that lays flat on the surface, the epoxy either came off or receded; I plan to apply more epoxy to complete the seal. Excess JB Weld has flaked off the track.

scale scale

Click for full size image

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Replacing the bottom track will require pulling out the doors and side tracks, then removing the bottom track. At that point, you may want to consider replacing the entire door if it's older. –  BMitch Dec 4 '13 at 15:01
    
Right, so I don't want to do that. –  JoshDM Dec 4 '13 at 16:31
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Nice post by the way, with excellent clear pictures. A+ on the question. –  Bryce Dec 4 '13 at 18:07
    
Thanks, @Bryce - I figured I want this done right, so... –  JoshDM Dec 4 '13 at 19:32
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Drill with a medium size bit, that's probably good enough, and a round hole will be strongest. Else drill two holes and use a screwdriver as a punch, or a coping saw. –  Bryce Dec 16 '13 at 5:58

4 Answers 4

up vote 2 down vote accepted

This is a tough one, as the aluminum is hard to weld. And replacing the sill plate is tantamount to replacing the door (strike one for planned obsolescence).

I'd first try trimming a small scrap of aluminum slightly wider than the hole. Roll the top edge so it takes the weight of the door. Then clean the heck out of the area, and epoxy it into place.

This has a chance of working. Don't bother trying to restore the weep function, you need all the strength you can get. Don't worry about making the track slightly wider, the roller wheel is pretty sloppy.


Not used to working with folding metal? The top edge of an aluminum sardine can might give you a head start. The top edge of a tin can would be even stronger at the slight risk of galvanic corrosion. Sheet aluminum is available at any hardware store in the roofing area. JB weld is a fine epoxy. I'd stay away from fast epoxy and make sure to clamp really well. Remember you want the metal to take the weight of the door wheel, the epoxy is just to keep it from falling out. Feather the edges of the epoxy to reduce catching.

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As someone who doesn't normally have scrap aluminum lying around, can you recommend something of appropriate thickness to sacrifice for the project? The top edge of a soup can, perhaps? For epoxy, should I use something like JB Weld? –  JoshDM Dec 4 '13 at 17:08
    
Response added to answer. Post pictures when U are done please! –  Bryce Dec 4 '13 at 17:27
    
Most certainly. Looks like it's tuna for dinner tonight! –  JoshDM Dec 4 '13 at 20:24
    
Photos added to question. –  JoshDM Dec 11 '13 at 15:25

And for a completely different answer try adding 'repair' to your google search and up pops: http://slidingdoortrackrepair.com/

Sliding door track repair kit

Where you can find a cap to restore the track:

Sliding door track rail cover for repair

Also available for screens from http://www.slide-ezzz.com/catalog/sliding-screen-door-repair/

Screen door Track Rail Cover

But do note that will stuff up your remaining weep holes.

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I was looking at track covers via the search I was using above, but forgot to update on that. They covered the length of the track though, which was ridiculous for a screen slider. This seems specific for heavy glass sliders and bit overkill for a screen slider. Not your fault they don't have photos, but you'd think a place like that would use photo examples. –  JoshDM Dec 4 '13 at 20:24
    
If you want the screen door to roll properly, then covering the entire track is the way to go. If you only do a small patch, the door is likely to catch on the patch, or knockout the patch in short time. –  BMitch Dec 4 '13 at 20:26
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The SlidingDoorTrackRepair website is bad for dimensions also: it's not clear it would fit tightly on the smaller screen door track. But perhaps this answer will help someone else. –  Bryce Dec 4 '13 at 20:26
    
I spoke with someone and you have to replace the wheels if you use the screen track cover. –  JoshDM Dec 12 '13 at 21:06

Steel reinforced epoxy might do the trick, if you buff the area well enough first. But I'd go with the metal patch plus epoxy mentioned elsewhere.

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Do an Internet search for "Sliding Screen Door Rail". I found several that might work from 30-60$. I am not certain yours is replaceable, but look at the images and see.

Other option is to improve the door by replacing the sliding screen with a "retractable" roll up style screen. They are a little expensive but are available at most home centers and tuck neatly out of the way in a container mounted to the edge of the door when not in use.

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I have a dog door embedded in the screen door (gray plastic in top left of larger photo), so I can't go retractable. –  JoshDM Dec 4 '13 at 16:32

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