DIY Project: Here's how to build sliding barn doors and save hundreds!

Posted at 7:58 PM, Aug 01, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-02 09:49:28-04

Sliding barn doors are the craze right now, and so are DIY projects! If you're looking to add a unique piece to your home, you can do it yourself for less. You just have to be willing to spend the time.

My husband and I built two barn doors to cover the Arcadia doors leading to our backyard. The barn doors add a more rustic and decorative approach to provide shade instead of blinds. The floor plan of our home called for a more complicated track, a double bypass sliding barn door track.


For two doors, the screws, pieces of wood, stain and paint brushes, we paid $170 total. The double bypass sliding barn door track cost us $250. Add the two together, and the grand total comes to $420. Having someone build the doors for us and order the track would have cost $850, without installation.

If you want to build one door, costing $120 and buy a track, starting at $158, your grand total would come to $278. Home Depotsells kits with a completed door and track for $369, and Lowe's sells kits with a completed door and track for $379. So, overall you would saving about $100 doing it on your own.


For track installation instructions and requirements, be sure to research measurements before ordering.

If you want to build a sliding barn door, follow our instructions below:

  1. Measure your door frame, and know there needs to be about 6-12 inches from the top of the door to the ceiling for the track (specific measurements will be given for your track). This will help you determine what size your door should be.

  2. Measure your wall space to make sure you order a track that's not too long, but also long enough.

  3. We got eight pieces of Pine Wood that were eight feet long and have grooves so you can hammer them into each other. This will be the base of your barn door (This cost about $42) We chose Pine Wood because it's sturdy and has a lot of character that will show through when you stain it.

  4. You will also need four of the 1X4X8 (costs about $14) pieces of Pine Wood to line up the sides, and you'll use them for the decorative pieces across the base. (We made "X's")

  5. Measure the depth of the boards to know what size screw to use. We used 1 1/4-inch screws to drill the 1X4X8 piece onto the sides, keeping the screws in line. (We liked that the screws were exposed because it looked more rustic) Do about 5 rows on each side.

  6. You'll also need two 1X6X8 (costs about $18) boards to make the top, bottom and middle panels.

  7. Lay one piece down horizontally across the top of the door, line it up, take a pencil and draw a line across where you're going to saw it.

  8. Safety first! Get your goggles and mask ready. You will need a jigsaw. It will help keep your line straight.

  9. Then, you'll place the piece, screwing it in place.

  10. Repeat steps 7-9 for the bottom panel.

  11. Measure your door to find the center, set the piece in the center and mark a pencil line to match it up, and where to cut.

  12. Cut on the line, place it, and screw it down.

  13. For the remaining two 1X4X8 pieces, decide what design you're going for. We did a zig-zag-shaped "X".

  14. Lay your piece across, stand over top and draw your pencil lines for where to cut.

  15. After you cut, make sure it fits, place it, and put two screws in each panel.

  16. Repeat steps 14-15 for the other site of the design.

  17. Celebrate that the barn door bones are complete!

  18. Before you stain it, sand it in the direction of the grain.

  19. We chose the Jacobean stain. It cost just under $8 and our paint brushes cost about $4.

  20. Get a 3-inch sponge brush because if you use a regular brush with bristles, it soaks up the stain, doesn't cover as much and shows more brush strokes.

  21. Watch the video for painting techniques for staining.

  22. Celebrate your finished product!

  23. Add any other finishing touches.

  24. Get the track and follow the installation instructions.

For one door, you will spend close to $120. The cheapest track at Home Depot is $169, and the most expensive is over $700. The cheapest track at Lowe's is $158, and the prices go up from there. You can also find tracks and save on Amazon if you're a Prime Member.

Let us know if you try to build a sliding barn door. We would love to see your projects! Good luck!