how to replace door weather seal

door weather seal
Tools Needed
1 Hammer
2 Tape Measure
3 Utility Knife
4 Putty knife
Materials Needed
1 Adhesive remover
2 Hacksaw
3 Screwdriver
Total Cost
Find a handyman
Estimated Time
1-2 Hours
Skill Level: Beginner
The total cost and duration may vary when hiring a handyman!

Project Overview

crosscut of a front door weather seal

A door weather seal is placed between the bottom of an exterior door to seal the gap between the door and the floor. The weather seal stops inside air from escaping into the outside, and air from outdoors coming inside, preventing uncomfortable conditions and increased energy consumption.

On average, weatherstripping lasts 3- 5 years, although some products last much longer and some much less. The type of weatherstripping selected and care of the product both affect the duration of time it’ll last. There’s also a plethora of things that may cause the weatherstripping to deteriorate or otherwise become damaged.  Pets and humans can both cause damage to weatherstripping, as can pests, the age of the material, improper care, and various weather conditions.

Deteriorating or damaged weatherstripping allows air to escape from the home and allows outside air to come inside. It also suffices as an entrance point for pests like ants, spiders, cockroaches, and bees who want nothing more than to make themselves right at home underneath your roof. Inspecting the door weather seal yearly is ideal. As you inspect the weatherstripping, look for signs of deterioration and damage, including:

  • Weather seal that’s bent or otherwise lost shape
  • Dry, brittle, or cracked weather seal
  • Losing adhesive foam, or foam that has pulled away from its fixture
  • Missing adhesive foam
  • Missing nails

If damage is noted, don’t delay learning how to replace door weather seal with the step-by-step guide below. You’re letting heat and air escape your home, costing a considerable amount on your heating costs. Outside air and pests coming indoors create a big nuisance. Temperatures inside your home are likely uncomfortable. You’re suffering without merit, since a DIY weatherstrip replacement is a simple procedure that protects your home, comfort, and peace of mind. Expert door seal replacement isn’t necessary, as any homeowner can complete the task in a matter of hours with a few tools in-hand. Gather the items you’ll need and prepare for a day of DIY weatherstripping fun.

Step-By-Step Instructions


Choose Your New Door Weather Seal Type

door with a weather seal

There are a few types of weatherstripping to choose from. Remember, however, that cheaper door weather seal is usually the least effective and least durable of the choices. Choosing a higher-quality door weather seal might be ideal in this situation. V-Strip is a popular door weather seal. Also called tension stripping, the V-strip is constructed of heavy duty plastic or metal materials that has been folded in a V-shape. This gives the door seal springing action so that it fills all the gaps perfectly.

Felt weatherstripping is another cheap option for homeowners. Do not expect a long lifetime from felt weatherstripping, as it generally has a lifetime no greater than two years. It is easy-to install, however, and preferred by many homeowners. Peel-and-stick weather seal is another option. It's even less expensive than the traditional weatherstripping, costing only about 50 cents per square foot.  It’s simple to install and cheap, but do not expect it to provide much in the way of quality. Opt for copper or bronze peel-and-stick weatherstripping that can last for decades. Average cost is about $2 per square foot.

Tubular Rubber, Silicone, or Vinyl is also an option. Made of  a narrow sponge of rubber or vinyl tubing that attaches to a mounting strip, this weatherstripping is installed at based doors, at the bottom of a door, and between the door and door jamb. Finally, the door sweep is also an option for homeowners looking to create an airtight seal around the door of their home. This flat piece of stainless steel or aluminum material is attached to another strip that contains a sponge brush, plastic, or nylon. It is then placed on the bottom of the door from the inside.


Take Measurements

person measuring the jamb of a door

Measure the width of the horizontal jamb with. Cut a piece of weatherstripping to fit using the utility knife. Push the weatherstripping into the groove of the jamb. Measure the vertical jambs on either side of the door. When cutting weatherstripping for the door sides, cut it slightly longer than measured. The excess weatherstripping is cut off after installation.


Install The New Weather Seal

person installing a new weather seal

Cut the top of the weatherstripping so that it matches the horizontal weatherstripping piece. When both pieces match, an air-tight seal is created at the corners of the horizontal and vertical meeting points. Starting at the top and working your way down, push the weatherstripping into the grooves of the vertical jambs. Use the utility knife to cut off any excess weatherstripping once pushed into the jambs.

Scrap the old foam off of the frame using your putty knife. Use the adhesive residue cleaner to remove any remaining adhesive or residue from the surface. Begin peeling the back from one end of the weather seal, placing it inside the horizontal door jamb. Finish unrolling the weather seal, peeling the backing as you stick it to the jamb. Work your way across the door, using a utility knife to cut the weatherstripping at the opposite end.

Stick the weatherstripping inside the vertical jambs, peeling the backing in the same manner as in step two. Ensure the vertical weatherstripping is tightly affixed to the horizontal weatherstripping and at the bottom of the door.


Install The Sweep For Extra Protection

installing a weather seal door strip

Remove the nails holding the door weather seal to the door jamb. Once the nails are out, remove the weatherstripping using a pry bar. Measure the horizontal jamb. Cut the weatherstripping to right size. Use a utility knife to cut the vinyl. Use the hacksaw to cut the metal flange. Close the door, putting the weatherstripping in the jamb and the vinyl seal on the door. Ensure that it is tightly compressed when you shut the door. Nail the new weatherstripping to the jamb.

Ensure that it is lined up properly before securing the nails into place. Measure the vertical jamb height, cutting the weatherstripping to size. The rounded end shouldn’t be cut, as it is used to overlap the horizontal section of the weather seal. Put the vertical weatherstripping inside the door jambs. The rounded top should be put at the top, overlapping the horizontal section. Use nails to set the flanges on the jambs.


Keep In Mind

door weather seals

Grab all the tools and supplies for the job before you get started so you do not waste any time running back and forth to get the things that you need. The weatherstripping removal method used is determined by the type of weatherstripping already inside the home. As mentioned, several styles of weather door seal exist. Once you determine the type of weatherstripping in your home, learn how to replace the door weather seal with the appropriate instructions below.

Many of the peel-and-stick door weather seal products can be applied only when temperatures are 50 degrees Fahrenheit or warmer. If using V-shaped weatherstripping, face the opening toward the outside to prevent moisture buildup. Step one is vital for each homeowner who wants to learn how to replace door weather seal, since replacement is needed for the old seal. Visit the local hardware or home improvement store of your choice to choose the new weatherstripping you’ll install.

Open the door, tightly grasping the weatherstripping with your fingers. Pull the weatherstripping firmly to dislodge it from the door jamb groove. Once dislodged, remove the weatherstripping. Repeat the process on the upper jamb and jambs on each side.


Now that you know how to replace door weather seal, why not take things to the next level and also learn how to install a threshold if one currently isn’t installed? A threshold further protects the outside/inside barrier to your home, ensuring that you’re always cool, comfortable, and protected.

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