Weather Sealing Protects Your Garage Door… and Your Garage
Three ways to keep out the wind, rain and temperature extremes
Garage doors are all made with a bottom seal which, if properly installed and maintained, will help keep out water, wind, dust, and rodent pests out of your garage. Even the best seals and weatherstripping will break down over time, though regular inspection along with simple upkeep will extend that lifespan. When the bottom seal cracks, splits or is pulled out of alignment, don’t wait for things to get worse before repairing or replacing. The same goes for any threshold seal or stripping across the sides and top of your garage door and door windows. As the rainy season approaches, take the time to carefully inspect any wear or damage to this vital protection for your garage door, or better yet, call Automatic Door Specialists for a complete garage door inspection and tune-up. Just one breach during a heavy storm can cause damage not only to your door but the garage and its contents. Here are four basic things to think about when either repairing or upgrading your garage weather-protection system:
Bottom First: The Garage Door Bottom Seal
The bottom edge of your garage door comes, in most cases, comes with a standard door bottom seal. It’s basically a strip of rubber or vinyl that attaches along the width of the garage door. This seals the bottom interface between the cement floor and wood or steel frame of the door. If it fits tightly, without any daylight between the seal and the floor (easily viewed from the inside on a sunny day), that’s good. But watch for places where the seal is cracking or splitting, or is pulled away from the seal. That can get out of control quickly, often at a time when it makes the most difference.
Steel or aluminum garage doors will generally have an aluminum channel that holds a U-shaped astragal seal. This metal gasket channel system can also be used on a wood garage door, though they will characteristically have a simple strip-style seal nailed in place with galvanized or aluminum nails. An additional advantage of U-channel seals is the flexibility in the height of the seal for variations in gap between floor and door.
Don’t Skip the Threshold: Garage Door Threshold Seal
A garage door threshold seal in some ways mirrors and supports the bottom seal discussed above, but, as the name indicates, is attached to the floor. Threshold seals are designed to help keep out surface water and mud, especially where a driveway slopes down toward a garage. They may also effectively patch a gap or irregularity in the floor. These seals can in some cases be used as an alternative to the bottom seal, though the are best used together. A high-quality vinyl threshold seal is often more durable than the seal attached to the door frame, so it may be a good idea to see it as the foundation of your weather sealing system. Just remember, though, that the same threshold that keeps water from getting in makes it harder to sweep water or dirt out.
Look Sideways: Consider Door Stop Weatherstripping
Wind and rain will of course come through any gap or crevice that exists – including the sides of the door, where it overlays the wooden door jamb. Rubber or vinyl weatherstripping secured to the door stop molding (attached to the door jamb) will “kiss” the front face of the door and help provide protection from the elements.
It’s real simple: install door stop weatherstripping if you don’t already have it, or replace if it does not seal well. The door-side flange of the weatherstripping should press against the door to create a good seal. For doors that have damaged or badly weathered door stops in need of replacing there is specialty door stop vinyl molding with a wood-look finish.
Automatic Door Specialists wants your garage door to stay in optimal condition for its full expected lifetime, and protect your garage from water, wind and temperature extremes. Sealing and weatherstripping your garage door also helps to keep mice or other unwanted creatures from setting up house in your garage. It can, in many instances, be an energy-saver as well. We have a team of specialists who will answer all your questions and provide quick, economical installation of all these weather-proofing needs. Call us today for a tune-up, and we’ll get your garage door ready for winter – and far beyond.