How to Add a Draft Barrier to a Door

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Poorly fitting doors can be a major source of drafts that keep your house uncomfortable, allowing hot air in in the summer and cold air in in the winter. Weatherproofing can keep your house more comfortable and save you money on your heating and cooling bills. Draft barriers help seal your door by covering the gap between the bottom of the door and the sill. They're an effective and simple way to start weatherproofing your house.

  • Measure your door's bottom edge. Then head to your local home improvement or hardware store to get a draft barrier. The barriers come in standard sizes; you may find one that is the correct size, or you may have to buy a large one and cut it down.

  • Position your draft barrier on the door and mark where it should go. Refer to the diagram, and notice how the draft barrier is constructed. Typically, there will be a metal or plastic upper portion with several screw holes, and a rubber edge, or "skirt," extending below. Position the upper edge against the door so the skirt extends down over the gap between the door and the sill. If it's too low it may interfere with the door's operation, and if it's too high it won't seal the gap effectively. When you have it in a good position, mark the screw hole positions on the door with a pencil.

  • Drill pilot holes on the pencil marks for the screws that will attach the draft barrier. The holes should be smaller than the screws you'll be using.

  • Screw the draft barrier into the door. Test the door to ensure that it opens, swings and closes smoothly.

Tips & Warnings

  • To get an even more weather-tight fit, attach a strip of insulation onto the back of the rubber skirting, where it comes into contact with the door and sill. Don't use insulation that's too thick, or the door may not close all the way.
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