How to Repair a Broken Sliding Drawer

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If your silverware drawer has lost its luster and is starting to shimmy when you pull it open, it's probably in need of a new drawer guide. This little notched plastic piece keeps your drawer on track. You can pick up a replacement at your local hardware store.

Things You'll Need

  • New Plastic Drawer Guide
  • Screwdriver
  • Small Screws

Remove the drawer's contents.

Pull the drawer gently by the handle until it comes all the way off the track (see A). You may need to lift the drawer above the track or press a release lever to release the drawer.

Turn the drawer over and locate the drawer guide. Look for a small semicircular or square plastic piece located at the drawer's rear center.

Examine the condition of the drawer guide. If the guide is in good condition but merely loose, tighten the screws and replace the drawer. If the guide is held into place with metal staples, replace the staples with small screws, which are sturdier. If the guide needs to be replaced, proceed to step 5.

Unscrew the old drawer guide and buy an exact replacement.

Position the new drawer guide in place, matching the existing screw holes in the wood or particleboard drawer with the new guide's holes.

Tighten all the screws to secure the guide firmly in place (see B). Don't tighten the screws excessively--you could crack the drawer.

Gently slide the drawer back onto the drawer track.

If a wooden strip on the bottom of the drawer guides the sliding drawer instead of a steel track, tighten the screws that hold the strip in place. You can buy a replacement strip for the drawer at the hardware store if the old one is worn out.

Tips & Warnings

  • Take care to gently remove the old plastic guide so as not to damage the drawer.
  • Lightweight plastic guides like these are only meant to support a few pounds. For heavy drawers, consider installing roller guides on each side of the drawer.
  • See How to Fix a Drawer That Sticks for more drawer fixes.

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