How to Repair a Door Gasket
It is essential to know how to repair a door gasket because they can be found in so many places throughout your home. These rubber seals are present in refrigerator doors, dishwasher doors, shower doors, and pellet stove doors, to name just a few. Door gaskets save energy and prevent leaks, but will disintegrate or distort over time from the repeated pressure of opening and closing the door. Fortunately, door gasket replacement is a simple and straightforward process.
Step 1 – Order Gasket Replacement Kit
Depending on the type of gasket you are replacing, you may be able to just purchase a generic kit and cut it to size. However, for appliances such as refrigerators or dishwashers, it is recommended to contact the manufacturer or dealer for the correct gasket. Make a note of the appliances make and model number to facilitate this process.
Step 2 – Soak Gasket in Hot Water Overnight
For dishwasher and refrigerator doors, soak the gasket in hot water overnight. This will make the gasket pliable and it will slip over the door and into the retainer more easily.
Step 3 – Disconnect and Pull Out Appliance
If you are replacing the gasket on a dishwasher or refrigerator, you may want more room to work than what’s currently available. Unplug the appliance and shut off supply valves before removing the plumbing connections. Now pull the appliance out into a large open area. For pellet stove doors and shower doors, remove the door from its hinges and set it aside.
Step 3 – Completely Remove Old Gasket Material
Remove the screws holding the gasket in place and lift it up, or peel away the old gasket with a putty knife. Use a wire brush and cleaning rag to completely remove all bits of the old seal if possible. If you are replacing a refrigerator door gasket, you will need to work carefully because the screws you are removing may also hold other parts of the refrigerator door in place.
Step 4 – Install New Gasket
If you are replacing a shower door, lay down a bead of silicone sealant and place the gasket on top of it. Now screw the gasket into place slowly, adjusting the placement if necessary. For pellet stove doors, you will also need to squirt the provided glue or cement into the gasket groove, and then lay the rope gasket around the door without stretching it. For refrigerator doors, it is best to start from the top by removing a few screws and peeling back the old gasket. Now, slip the new gasket into the metal retainer and replace the screws. Continue this process, working from the top of the refrigerator to the bottom. For dishwashers, work from the bottom to the top. Do not stretch or force the gasket.
Step 5 – Allow Glue to Dry and Reassemble Door
If you applied sealant, follow the provided instructions for drying time before using the gasket. Dishwasher and refrigerator gasket seals can be tested immediately.