Weatherstripping Doors And Windows: Overview

Homes whether new or old often have cracks and openings around doors and windows.

These gaps are a major source of heat loss and can account for up to one-third have your home\’s overall heating cost.

That’s why they should apply caulk and weatherstripping all-rounder doors and windows.

After all, heating and cooling costs account for nearly half your home’s utility expenses and poor sealing is a contributing factor to those costs.

Other factors include insulation the number of stories in a house. The number one issue is  air conditioning units in windows and more.

When you consider even a tiny one, a permanent gap around a typical entry door is the equivalent drilling a five and a half inch diameter hole through an outside wall.

Closing that gap is well worth the effort when checking for leaks. Some are pretty easy to detect like the crack of light beneath the front door on a sunny day or the rush of cool air coming from a window on a blustery day. But there may be far less obviously ones and may take some creativity to discover.

Here’s an easy way to detect leaks around doors and windows in your home, on a windy day turn off your AC unit and close all the doors and windows. Turn on any bath fans and stove ends in your home, then light a stick of incense and pass it along the edges of your doors and windows. Wherever the smoke is blown into the room, there’s a leak.


Caulking the seal gaps around doors and windows is an easy energy-saving DIY project any homeowner can take on to lower their utility bill.

There are several basic types of caulking compounds available including latex silicone polyurethane and hybrids products. Which for me was making it possible to tackle a variety of sealing jobs.

Latex caulk is a cost-efficient option that is easy to work with and can be painted if needed. Latex is versatile and can be used on a variety of surfaces including doors and windows. It cleans up nicely with soap and water.

Silicone caulk offers good flexibility, durability and adhesion, providing an excellent seal against the outside elements.

Silicone caulk is perfect for use around doors and windows in areas exposed to moisture or direct sunlight.

Silicone products cannot be painted as they are engineered to not have anything stick to the surface.

Polyurethane caulk provides outstanding adhesion and is also very durable but can be a little more difficult to work with.

Most polyurethane products are engineered for exterior use and can also be applied to a damp or wet surface if needed.

Hybrid products offer you the best of each technologies without the drawbacks. These products can be applied to a damp surface; painted in a relatively short period of time; applied to any surface hybrid products; and provide a durable long-lasting seal regardless of where they’re used.

Most caulking products come in a 10-ounce cartridge and applied with the caulking gun.

You can also find latex and silicone products in smaller squeeze tube sizes if you don\’t want to use a caulking gun or if a smaller amount of product is needed for your job.

Before applying a new layer of caulk, you’ll need to remove any old caulking with the utility knife or scraper. Carefully clean away any dirt and debris from the area and allow the surface to dry.

When you’re ready to start caulking, first load the caulk gun by pulling back the plunger and placing the tube of caulk into the chamber bottom in first. Squeeze the trigger until it makes contact with the tube.

Cut the tip to your desired bead size at an angle using the wire on the caulk gun to puncture the seal. If needed, apply pressure by squeezing the gun till the product makes its way to the end of the nozzle.

Holding the gun at a 45 degree angle to ensure the gap is covered, squeeze the trigger as you push the gun away from your body to ensure that you’re using enough caulk to fill your gap.

When finished, release the trigger at the end of the same pushing the tip of the nozzle into the corner to cut off the flow of caulk slightly. As you lift the nozzle, make sure to cap the top of the nozzle as most caulks can be stored and reused at a future time.

There are a variety of methods that can be used to smooth the caulk ranging from just run your wet finger along the bead to using a professional caulk tool for optimal results. The type of caulk you use may impact the method used to smooth the product out.

Caulking doors and windows is a really quick and simple process leaving your home warmer more comfortable, and more energy efficient when you finish.

Weatherstripping doors and windows is another cost effective way to reduce energy waste.

Weatherstripping products come in many different forms and can be made up other combination of materials such as wood, rubber, vinyl, metal and foam.

To determine the type of weather stripping that will be the most effective in the area you’re trying to seal, you want to consider factors like the amount of friction it will have to withstand exposure to weather and any cosmetic concerns you may have with it being seen.

Weatherstripping adhesive-backed foam tape is sold in rolls and in various thicknesses.

With the sticky back, just cut it to the desired length and apply it to the top in bottom of the window sashes or inside door frames.

The strip also known as tension seal is a durable plastic or metal strip folded into a V-shape that springs open to bridge gaps.

You can cut it to lengths then either peel and stick it or nail it along the sides.

Have double hung or sliding windows? Felt is another great choice for weatherstripping around a door or window sash, or in a door jamb. Felt is easily nailed or stapled in place and it compresses to allow smooth movement of doors and windows.

For the base of doors, and windows, the top or bottom. At a window sash, or between a door and it\’s jamb.

Tubular rubber is an effective air barrier, made of veneer sponge rubber or vinyl tubing. Sometimes attached to a wood or metal mounting strip, tubular rubber comes peel-and-stick, or can be fastened with screws through slot holes.

And lastly, any well sealed door requires door sweeps!

Door sweeps are flat pieces or U shaped pieces of plastic aluminum or stainless steel fitted with the stripper nylon plastic or vinyl or a sponge brush.

To fill the space between the door and the threshold, cut it to your doors with and install it along the bottom up the interior side of the door with screws.

Door sweeps keep cool air and heat in, insects and other unwelcome visitors out.

Altogether you can save up to two hundred dollars a year in heating and cooling costs or about 10 percent of your energy bill by sealing and insulating your home with energy star-rated products.

If you feel like you’d rather have a handyman pro complete this or other projects for you, Pretty Handy Guys Handyman Services has local handyman pro ready to partner with you in your home improvement projects.

Book Us Online or call us now for a FREE In-Home Estimate at 404-465-3414.

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