One of the most popular posts here at SuperNoVAwife is our tutorial for using Ikea Pax Wardrobe doors as sliding closet doors for our kitchen pantry.
There have been a lot of follow-up questions on that post (and it makes me realize I left out a lot of details from the post, so please forgive me!), so I thought I’d compile the answers in one, consolidated post in the hopes that it helps other folks trying out this project.
(Thanks to all the folks that have submitted questions, whether in the comments of the original post or by email).
Scott asks “Did you drill extra holes for more screws into your top rail or did you just use the two screws that come with the pax doors to hold everything up?”
Answer: We definitely drilled more holes in the top rail. We drilled seven additional holes in the top track and used seven of these 10 by 3-1/8-Inch Structural Screws
As I mentioned in the original post, these doors are, by far, the heaviest Ikea furnishings we’ve ever purchased. We wanted to make sure that these doors weren’t going anywhere! So, we purchased some very heavy duty screws.
PaxFan, KimandKreg, and Guillaume all had questions about the bottom track: Did you use a floor guide or bottom track? Do the doors swing without these?
Long story short: At first, we did not install the bottom track (also referred to as the floor guide in the question). The doors DID function mostly fine without the bottom track. But ultimately, we ended up installing the bottom track.
Okay, now for the longer version. The doors, without the bottom track, slid fairly well without the bottom track. The two doors did occasionally bump into each or into the wall, but we just kind of “lifted” the doors away from the wall when we would open or close the sliding door. As I write that, it probably sounds like an annoying process to handle the doors, but it really wasn’t that bad.
But after a week or so, we did end up installing the bottom track that came with the Pax doors.
We mostly followed the installation directions in the Pax instructions book provided by Ikea. However, we ran into a small problem. The bottom track has to be at a precise distance away from the top track (since the bottom of the door has to glide directly on the track). When we went to install the bottom track, it ended up sitting directly on our floor baseboard trim. Since the trim is a curved surface, and not exactly a strong piece of wood, we opted for a minor modification.
Sorry we don’t have pictures of this process, but we cut out a notch of the baseboard trim, and then we put a thin piece of scrap wood where the notch cutout was, and then screwed the scrap wood to the wall. We then attached the bottom track to those scrap pieces of wood. We affixed the track to the wood with two screws on each end of the track. We also used a small piece of scrap wood in the middle of the track, mostly just to support the track. We didn’t use any screws in the middle. Just the ends.
I’m attaching some pictures I recently took that I hope helps illustrate the process.
I also had two questions related to whether we used the “fuzzy strips” or “bumper pads.”
Yes to both. We installed the fuzzy strips along the length of each door. (Forgive the terrible photos in this section, but it’s difficult to photograph some of these things after it’s already been installed. Apologies for leaving this out of the original post!
We also used the included “bumper pads.” We used most of them as intended, which is in between the doors to prevent the doors from scratching each other or bumping each other. Again, forgive the blurry pictures, it was difficult to photograph the space in between the doors, where the bumper pads reside. We put bumper pads on each door at the top, middle, and bottom of each door.
We also used bumper pads for an alternative use. Although it’s not the prettiest solution, we also put some bumper pads on the one side of each door. We put them there because the one edge of our doors is flush against the top of our doorway into our kitchen (You can see what I mean by looking at the last photo in this post). After a few too many bumps of the doors into the top of the doorway, we were experiencing some paint scrapes and chipped paint. So, we put the bumper pads on the edges, but this wouldn’t be necessary for everybody.
Anni asks: Looks like you have a surveillance camera pointing at the pantry – is that to catch late night snackers? LOL
Ha, good eye! We do have surveillance cameras in our home, and this one is typically pointed in another direction, toward one of the doors in our home. The camera probably got bumped during the installation and was pointing toward the pantry! Although maybe I could rig some solution so that if the camera DOES catch me snacking from the pantry, it would sound some sort of alarm. That might help with my diet! 🙂
I hope that everybody finds this follow-up post helpful! Keep the questions coming if you still have more!