Why do My Sliding Glass Doors Have Condensation: A Serious Problem

You can’t help noticing because it’s annoying. When your sliding glass doors have condensation, it makes it hard to see. Moreover, it can run down and pool on the wood or vinyl, causing warping or wet your carpet. It’s normal enough, especially in winter, or if you have high humidity. Can it cause damage? What can you do to fix it? Don’t worry. There are several ways to remedy the issue, so you don’t have a problem. I’ll show you multiple methods for resolving your sweaty glass door issues. Then you can choose the one that works best for your situation. Don’t wait until you have a mess on your hands, take action now.

Why do my sliding glass doors have condensation? Your sliding glass doors have condensation because the surface of the glass is cold, and humidity is high. Whether you live in a very wet climate, or you’re using a humidifier too much, sweaty windows can be more than annoying. You don’t want mold or damages around the door. Luckily fixing it is simple.

What Causes Condensation on Sliding Glass Doors

If this is the first time you’re noticing the condensation on your sliding glass doors, it may seem strange. However, it’s natural. Moreover, you’ve seen this effect in action before. Cold drinks in summer and dew on blades of grass in the morning are both forms of visible condensation. So why does it happen?

When water that has evaporated into the air meets a colder surface, it collects into droplets there. Essentially, this is the same thing as forming a cloud in the sky before raindrops fall. The water begins as a fine mist, and as the minuscule beads come together, they grow in size.

The water cycle is playing out on your door before your eyes. Unfortunately, without streambeds, or soil, that water has nowhere to go. Hence it dribbles down to your doorsill or onto the floor. Outside, falling water becomes part of nature and eventually runs to the ocean or replenishes your local water table.

Alternately, inside your house, it has nowhere safe to go. You can towel off the doors a hundred times, but it won’t stop the problem. Luckily, with a little effort on your part, preventing this process from happening on your sliding glass doors is easy enough.

Does Condensation Only Happen on Your Glass Door

It may seem easy to blame the door, but it’s not the culprit. You see condensation on bathroom mirrors as well. Whenever you have a warm shower, some of the water escapes into the air.

The sweat on your door is more visible because glass is one of the most accessible surfaces for drops to congregate onto. The smoothness and cold temperature of a single pane of glass help to make it visible. Unfortunately, there’s already excess water in the air, and on other surfaces when you notice the door fogging up. You just don’t see it.

Because glass is clear, it doesn’t hold heat. That keeps it cool and lets larger droplets flow together. That doesn’t mean it’s the only place there’s water, but it’s like a special collection vessel aiding the process. More liquid collects on the glass.

An excellent hanging moisture remover like DampRid from Amazon is enough for minor condensation issues. Especially if you have a small space, a couple of these pouches will help remove the excess moisture from the air. Additionally, it can help get rid of nasty odors. You’ll be pleasantly surprised by how well a small pouch can work. Click here to find out more about DampRid. 

Can Condensation on Sliding Glass Doors Cause Damage

Should you worry that the condensation on your sliding glass door will cause damage? In a word, yes. Water comes together, and gravity pulls it downward. As the drops run, they pool on the track. From there, they drip out onto your floor.

For those with wooden floors, warping is ugly and expensive to replace. With luck, that’s all the damage that it will do. Alternately, if you have vinyl, that water can quickly get between the seams. Underneath it will destroy your subfloor. Like carpet and padding, moisture in the subflooring layer may result in mold.

Some molds aren’t too bad. They smell a little funky. However, there’s one common mold that comes from water damage that is a significant concern.

Your Door Condensation Can Cause Black Mold

Stachybotrys chartarum, commonly known as black mold, is no laughing matter. Among many other possible effects, it’s associated with acute idiopathic hemorrhages in infants. Though not enough studies have happened to prove all the effects conclusively, there’s plenty of evidence that black mold exposure harms people of all ages.

If you see blackish-green mold forming anywhere around your sliding glass door, you need to kill it right away. In extreme cases, that means replacing the floor or walls nearby. However, when you catch it early, a good bleach or mold killer may be enough to solve the issue. Make sure you also fix the condensation issue, or it will be a recurring problem.

How To Stop Condensation on Sliding Glass Doors

If you have a larger space or multiple sliding glass doors with condensation issues, then you need a big solution. Fortunately, I can give you ten easy ways to resolve the problem. All of the following methods work. However, some are more permanent than others. Use what works best for you, but also keep in mind that you need to avoid mold and other issues to stay healthy.

  1. Move Plants Away- Indoor plants put off excess moisture.
  2. Use Vent Fans- Whenever you have a shower or run an indoor washing machine or dishwasher, you create extra moisture in the house. Vent fans will help remove that water.
  3. Air to Air Exchangers- Although they’re expensive to install and maintain, air-to-air exchangers bring in outdoor air and swap it for the moist air inside your home. If you live somewhere excessively humid, then this isn’t your best bet.
  4. Raise the Temperature- Warm up your glass by using a small heater nearby to prevent surface cooling. Heat on glass can cause breakage, so avoid pointing the heater directly at any one spot on the doors. Instead, opt for placing the heat source beside the glass, facing away from it to warm the room. Naturally, this isn’t a great fix in summer.
  5. Open the Windows- By making the indoor and outside temps equal, you can prevent condensation. This technique won’t work if it’s mid-summer or cold wintertime. However, in moderate weather, it’s an ideal temporary fix.
  6. Use a Fan- Windows are not the only way to move air around. A small fan, unlike a heater, works just fine if you point it right at the sliding glass doors.
  7. Moisture Eliminators- The DampRid I mentioned before is a highly effective form of moisture removal. However, in a pinch, you can also use bamboo charcoal or even baking soda nearby. Both will help absorb that excess moisture.
  8. Humidifier Issues- If you regularly use a humidifier, then you’ve likely gone overboard. Turn it down, or off. Doing this will help remove some of the moisture in the air.
  9. Add Weather Stripping- When the moisture is coming in from outside, you may need to seal off the doors better than they have been. A good silicone or foam weather stripping material can help resolve the moisture leak.
  10. Get a Dehumidifier- The opposite of a humidifier, a dehumidifier, is self-explanatory. They remove moisture from the air. Like a fan, you can use one safely near your sliding glass door. Although I added it last on this list, a dehumidifier may be the best option.

I recommend the Alrocket 35 Ounce Portable Dehumidifier from Amazon. This model doesn’t take up much space, and it works within a limited radius of a hundred and sixty square feet. Luckily, that means you don’t need to suck all the moisture out of the air in your home to prevent issues with the sliding glass doors. Get the Alrocket by clicking here. 

Exterior Condensation

If the moisture is collecting on the outside of the sliding door, you have less to worry about. Unless it’s leaking back inside and wetting your floors, a little water isn’t such a big deal. Most of the time, you can just let nature take its course, and the water will run off into the ground.

In extreme cases, you can help control outside condensation as well. Use some Rain X on the outdoor portion of the glass. In addition to helping keep moisture off your car windshield, it can help solve this household issue. Plus, Rain X also helps you keep ice and frost off of your sliding glass door. Click here for Amazon prices and availability.

Final Thoughts

A little condensation on your sliding glass doors may not seem like a serious concern. However, the problems a little moisture can cause go beyond what you can see. It’s essential to find a permanent solution to the fog issue.

Sometimes doors have a different issue entirely. Improperly capped sliding glass doors can leak around the edges, causing condensation and other leaks. Check out this video to fix capping problems.

It’s more than merely annoying or frustrating to have a sweaty door. Make sure you don’t wait too long when you notice indoor condensation, or you’ll pay for it in the long run.

Aron Blake

I am the lead copywriter on Homezesty and the Webmaster. I have a lot of experience in home renovations and the creation of style. I enjoy writing and sharing my tips on how to create the best living environment. My Linkedin Profile, My Twitter Account

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