Tips on Sealing a Door Threshold

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  • 1-2 hours
  • Beginner
  • 20-50

Sealing and maintaining a proper door threshold provides many benefits for today’s homeowner. Since most people in the United States live in an area susceptible to cold winters and hot summers there is great value in just a little bit of home maintenance. A properly maintained and sealed door threshold does a great job of keeping the house cool in the summer by preventing cool air-conditioned air from escaping. It also does a great job in the winter of keeping the cold winter air out and the heat inside. The key to this, however, is maintaining a solid seal. Without a solid seal, the air circulates and hundreds of dollars can be wasted in heating and cooling costs.

Aluminum Thresholds

A door threshold can really be sealed in one of two ways. With an aluminum threshold, which is often common with entry doors instead of garage doors, the aluminum is spring-loaded to form a tight seal with the door when it is closed. The door slides easily over it when opening and closing, but the tension of the spring physically pushes the seal closed in order to seal out the air. Unfortunately, if the spring goes bad this system becomes useless. At that point, it is wise for the homeowner to simply make a purchase of a new door threshold as opposed to trying to fix it. The spring mechanism is complex and meant to last, but once it goes, there is little hope of fixing it.

Rubber Thresholds

A more common solution is a rubber door threshold because it forms a tighter seal than most aluminum or spring-loaded thresholds. These types of thresholds are often common underneath garage doors as well. In a garage setting, a rubber gasket is often laid down directly beneath the door and held in place with a strong glue. The pressure and weight of the door itself will help seal the garage when the door is closed. A similar type of seal can be made with a rubber gasket on exterior doors as well. The rubber gasket can be laid down on an existing aluminum door seal and again, the pressure and weight of the door when closed helps to form a tight seal. Most of these products are easy to install for your average homeowner.

A simple Internet search is a great way to find door threshold products. Most products come in a variety of sizes in order to fit your needs. They can fit 32-inch exterior doors up to large garage doors and most do not cost a lot of money. Since these products are meant to be installed by the average homeowner instead of professionals, they come with easy-to-use instructions that can turn even the biggest klutz into a handyman. The important thing to remember, especially with the rubber-sealed doors, is that the rubber does the work of sealing the air out.

Consider the climate you live in as well as the use the threshold will need to stand up to. Sealing the threshold is an easy job and one that saves valuable money in wasted energy costs down the line.