When you’re trying to keep your home warm in winter, sometimes nothing can seem more annoying than to feel a draft of cold air coming in from under the door. When your doors aren’t fully sealed, cold air can enter your home or, conversely, warm air can escape it. With 45% of your energy bill going to heat, that’s money out the window.
What causes drafts in the first place? Gaps in the construction of your home or an opening that has been left unsealed. That’s why you’ll commonly experience drafts around windows, doors, pipes, and ceiling-to-wall joints. And, not only does cold air enter through these spaces, but pests and moisture can, too. In this guide, we’ll explain how to stop cold-air drafts around your doors.
The first option we suggest you try is weather stripping. These strips of material are the most cost-effective way to go, and it doesn’t require you to be a DIY expert. Your home likely already has weather stripping, but it can get damaged over time. When this happens, you’ll need to replace it by first pulling up the old stripping and then putting down new cushion-vinyl or spring-metal stripping.
Weather stripping is effective only if your door has a true and snug fit. If the door is warped or damaged, you’ll need something to help fill in the gaps. Foam tape is an effective way to secure these gaps.
You can pick up a pack of foam tape from any hardware store for just a few dollars. Simply stick strips of it in the holes between the door and the wall and you’ll create a much snugger fit.
If there are windows in your door, you can apply window film to insulate them. Windows are prone to letting in air, so don’t leave them untreated.
To apply window film, place it over the window and heat the plastic-like material with a hair dryer. The film will shrink and seal the windows, thus helping to prevent drafts.
While you might not need to use a door snake all the time, it’s a great help if you know you’ll be experiencing a strong storm in your area. A door snake is a weighted fabric tube that blocks unwanted cold air. You simply press it into the underside of a door to stop air currents from entering through the space there.
You can DIY your own door snake with materials around your home, or you can use a rolled-up towel. Door snakes are an effective way to protect your home’s warm air during periods of harsh weather.
Last but not least, you might need to check the caulking on your doors. After a lot of exposure to the elements, caulk can degrade or even peel away. Replacing this caulk every year will go a long way toward helping to keep out drafts.
Although this project is a big undertaking, you can definitely remove your old caulk and re-caulk your home on your own in one day. It’s the perfect fall project to prepare for winter.
Winterize Your Doors
Preparing your doors for winter takes some time, but it’s well-worth the effort in order to keep comfortable and save energy during the cold months. With the above tips, it’s easier than you might think to get the job done.