Common Errors of Weatherstripping EXTENDED
When it comes to both protecting your door and ensuring it’s performing properly in terms of temperature control and energy efficiency, weatherstripping is a vital material. In charge of sealing the entry of your home or building, weatherstripping is one of your top resources for limiting temperature loss and keeping your building as efficient as possible throughout the year, both during the cold and warm seasons.
At Price’s Guaranteed Doors, we’re happy to offer not only a wide variety of entry doors, security doors and other door options, but also expertise and assistance with weatherstripping and several other related common door components. Why is weatherstripping important, and what are some of the most common errors or misconceptions we see regarding this vital material? Here’s a primer on everything you need to know.
Weatherstripping Basics and Importance
Weatherstripping refers to a material that’s meant to fit in between the door and the door frame, also known a s the threshold of the door. Weatherstripping will be made from a few different common materials, with some of the most popular including felt, rubber, foam, vinyl and even metal in certain cases.
In most situations, weatherstripping will adhere directly to the frame of the door itself. This means that when the door is closed, the weatherstripping creates a tight seal that blocks not only light, but also air from making it through. The weatherstripping materials are put in place specifically to block gaps that might normally form between the door and threshold.
The primary purpose of weatherstripping, and what makes it so important: Blocking temperature loss. Without weatherstripping, there would likely be several small gap spots in your door’s setup when it’s closed – these gaps allow air to constantly seep out, and the result here is massive temperature loss from your HVAC system. During the summer, all the cool air that your air conditioner produces will have a chance to escape through these gaps, forcing the system to work even harder just to keep the area cool; the flip side of this theme will take place during winter with your furnace.
With quality weatherstripping, however, this is no concern whatsoever. Weatherstripping will block this form of temperature loss completely, and often allows for massive improvements in energy efficiency. Not only will your home or building feel more comfortable on a daily basis, you’ll spend less money and place less strain on your HVAC components to achieve this comfort.
Choosing Proper Materials
Ideally speaking, the best weatherstripping materials are those that will withstand not only temperature changes throughout the year, but also the wear-and-tear that comes with frequent opening and closing of the door. The best options here are typically reinforced vinyl, foam and silicone, all of which are extremely durable and will provide excellent protection. If these are not available to you, speak to our door experts about other good options.
Our next several sections will go over some general tips on avoiding common mistake areas and moving in the right direction for weatherstripping and related accessory purchases.
Buying Enough Weatherstripping
It’s better to get a little more than have to run back to the store! For example, with bottom inserts, you may need 1 foot more than the width of your door to have enough to fold over and re-insert into the channel to ensure a snug fit that will not shift from side to side. Also, make sure that you have thick enough product to cover all the potential gaps. Conduct a visual inspection of your door’s sealable area, and take measurements.
Ordering Corresponding Size
For top and side weatherstripping, a standard retainer goes with standard inserts, and large retainer goes with large inserts. Be sure to order the appropriate sizes based on your needs here.
Ordering Non-Matching Inserts
Bottom “T” U-shaped astragals go with bottom retainesr with double, 1/4″ “T” shaped channels. Bead shaped astragals go with bead retainers. Certain door makes, such as Wayne Dalton, have their own “D” shape style ends.
Clopay door often uses a connection where both ends of the insert fit into a single groove, with the insert material shaped like the picture below. Single “T” shaped retainers take a bulb seal, which flattens from an “O” shape to form the seal. And if none of this makes sense, simply call our team for assistance.
Improper Situational Application
The products needed for a commercial versus a residential job can vary quite a bit. Different sizes are used as standards, and it’s very important that you use the correct products for your job. Consult with our team here if you have questions.
Ordering Seal With Inserts
If you order a “bottom seal,” you have the surface for fastening to the door, and the rubber or vinyl seal as well. It is not necessary to order inserts if you have a bottom seal product.
Appropriate Bottom Insert Width
If your door is 2″ thick, you’d be best off with 4″ wide insert. If 1 3/8″ thick, go with 3″. General rule of thumb is at least 2x the door’s width for the insert width.
Weather Sealing and Climate Needs
Synthetic rubber products are generally better for sealing and durability than vinyl. Extremely cold, coastal, and storm-prone regions need special care and high-durability products.
For more on how to choose the ideal weatherstripping for your door and how to avoid mistakes regarding it, or for information on any of our entry doors, garage doors or other services, speak to the staff at Price’s Guaranteed Doors today.