July 15, 2014

Trimming the New Slider

The night after we installed our new slider, there was a monsoon.  Seriously, no sooner did we get in the door, close it and turn off the light for the night that the rain started coming... and coming.  At one point in the middle of the night I was certain that the pounding rain would drive out our new nails and collapse the door inward.  Luckily, when we woke up the next morning, it was still standing.  

We took inspiration for the trim from the simple, mission style trim the Bath Crashers installed on our new windows and doors. 

I started by adding a piece of trim to the top, underside of the door. I was smart this time around and purchased pre-primed wood.  It wasn't much more expensive, and it saved a ton of time.  Time = Money.

Then we trimmed out the top piece above it.  This a a very "in progress" photo before it was completely nailed in.

Then I just did the same thing to the sides, first the inside trim, and then the outside casing.

I was left with a bunch of nail holes and seams, but they are easy to hide with a little painter's caulk.

And after two coats of paint- it looked like it had always been there.  Except now we could actually see out both windows, and I swear it makes the room look bigger.

We weren't done quite yet though, as there was still the issue of the outside.

I'm not going to lie, at this point I was done with the slider project.  Put a fork in me.  But there was no questioning that it had to get done, so I set up shop out on the deck and tried to enjoy the weather while I worked.

For the exterior I bought white, vinyl brick molding, which worked really slick. (I think I'm becoming my father.)

It took me just shy of an hour to make the cuts and get it installed perfectly, mostly because our opening was slightly bigger again, and I had to work a little magic with additional trim to accommodate.

Once the trim was in I sealed the hell out of it with exterior paintable caulk.  

To ensure I kept the cold air and rain out, I had to smooth caulk onto the siding quite a bit, which meant I would get to paint two colors out here, not just one.  WillItEverQuit?

But in the end, after I painted the trim and touched up the siding, I was pretty happy with our results.

All in it took us 2 full days of work, although much of it was done solo while the other parent kept an eye on the kiddos.  It wasn't that hard really, it just got long at the end.  Installing ourselves saved us at least a thousand dollars though, and made this a pretty quick and affordable project.  Plus, now we can actually see outside, and the whole room looks better now that there isn't this big focal point that made the room look old and worn.  Has anyone else ever installed a slider?  We considered changing this up with french doors, but with this being the only exterior window in this room, keeping it open is really important to us. With all the mosquitoes, screens are a must in Minnesota.  In the end we just didn't like the price and options there. All in, I'm happy with how this one turned out.


  1. Loved your honesty that once you were done with the inside trim, you were done! It's great insight for me as I offer home tips for women ... and now understand you did what you see first. In fact it would have been better to seal up the outside first before any water could get inside the house framing, as water is a huge problem.

    Saw shims on prior post but didn't see in either post, mention of stuffing insulation between the rough opening and the new slider. The space is small & gets overlooked often but when checking for air leaks, I often find that this space is actually colder than the windows ... telling me there are gaps that need to be insulated. Not what you want to hear right now but check for drafts this winter, and you might realize you do need to pop off trim & insulate.

    PS Would love to share this story on my website with link back here for the ... rest of the story. Here's where you can outline key messages, http://www.savvyhomeownerstories.com

    1. You're right Tina- I did completely forget to mention it, but I did fill all my gaps with spray/expandable foam before we placed on the trim. That's a really good tip to share with everyone. And I agree, we would have preferred to trim out the exterior first, but it was still raining. Luckily the clouds broke and we were able to get out there later in the afternoon and enjoy the sun. Thanks!

  2. I saw your post about the sliding not fitting with the right size of the hole and what you guys did to remedy that problem is surely amazing. The end result is pretty gorgeous, considering all things you did in just two days such as the removal, installation and finishing. Kudos to you guys for the wonderful job! Wishing everyone the best of health!

    Lynne Hollaran @ Suburban Glass