Closet doors can be a nuisance, if they aren’t serving any purpose. They get stuck on their tracks. They stick out. And, they limit where you can arrange furniture. If you’re not worried about pets wandering in where they shouldn’t, or about household smells getting into your clothes, you may consider removing the doors entirely.
Once you get the doors off, there are several things you can do with the space.
- Use it as it was intended — A well-organized linen closet or wardrobe can be a highlight in your home design. You can arrange storage and clothes in a way that makes the open scheme attractive. Check out large open shelving units at stores like IKEA to fill and organize the space.
- Open usable floor space — Closet remodels like this can get furniture out of the main square footage. For instance, if you have a wide and narrow closet, you can paint and dimly light the closet before sliding the head of a bed and nightstands inside. You could also move in a dresser, desk or bookshelf.
- Turn it into something else entirely — Lots of homeowners are taking off closet doors to design the space for a new purpose, like a home office or vanity area. Go big. Take out the shelves and transform it into a crafting corner, a reading area, or even a nursery if it’s big enough.
- Replace them with something better — Perhaps you like the utility of a pocket or sliding barn door. These offer attractive options for those who want the function of a door without the hassle of other, out-dated styles. Or, if you’re simply looking for an upgrade, consider glass French doors for a classical look.
Removing closet doors is one of the easiest DIY tasks for many homeowners. The one trick? Handling the awkward size and weight of the door. So, it may be worth enlisting a second pair of hands.
Rolling doors are typically attached to a rail at the top by their wheels. There are two doors in this system, one which slides across the front and the other along the back. The bottom track is simply there to guide the doors smoothly past one another. The removal process involves lifting each door out of the bottom track and angling it so that it comes out of the top track.
- Loosen the screws attaching the wheels to the door, so that the door shifts downward a little and makes more room between the door and upper track
- Slide the front-rolling door so that it is away from the side edge of the door frame.
- Lift the door upward and out of the bottom track, then pull toward you at about a 35-degree angle. At this point, the wheels should dislodge from the upper track and you will be able to remove the door.
- Repeat with second door.
- Remove screws from top and bottom tracks to remove the tracks themselves.
Bifold doors are connected to the top and bottom tracks by pins; the top are spring-loaded for easy removal. Each door is made up of a pair of panels, which are attached by hinges. These doors fold open and stick out into the room area. For larger closets, there will be two doors which fold to either side. Removing them is very similar to removing rolling doors. Here’s what you need to do:
- Fold the door so that the two panels are together. There may be a lever at the top which needs to be unlocked.
- Lift the door, with the panels folded, about ¾ of an inch so that it comes out of the bottom track.
- Angle the door out of the bottom track. It should come out of the top track easily.
- Remove the screws of the top and bottom tracks to remove remaining hardware.
- Repeat with second door if applicable.
Now that the doors are off, it’s time to get organized. If you’re going to have your closet on display, you may need some tips on making it all look cohesive. Start by getting some advice on how to organize your closet. Then, all that’s left to do is enjoy your extra square footage.