I recently bought/renovated a house that has an ugly front entry door unit. The frame is in fine shape, I just don't like the style and want to update it to match the rest of the house. My question is can I just pop the sidelight units out and replace them? I want to remove the whole sidelight unit (glass and surrounding frame) not just the glass. I plan to have some insulated/tempered glass panels made and will construct the new sidelights myself to fit the opening.
The frame surrounding the sidelight glass appears to be fiberglass and held in place by a little quarter round molding. If I pull off the molding and cut the seal from the outside, will I be able to pull it out or is it attached some other way? Will removing the sidelights damage the rest of the unit?
When I inspect the unit, there doesn't appear to be any way to remove the glass in case of breakage other than removing the whole sidelight unit. The profile around the glass seems to be just molded into the fiberglass frame. This leads me to believe you must be able to remove/replace the whole unit, but I'd love to have some opinions. I've never done this before and I'd appreciate some advice. I have pics if that would help, but I can't figure out how to attach them. I think the file size is too large and I don't know how to resize. Thanks!
P.S. If or when I put the new sidelight units into the opening, what sealant should I use?