how to install flashing around a door

Two people standing in front of a door frame with flashing exposed
Tools Needed
1 Drip Cap
2 Utility Knife
3 Hammer
4 Roofing Nails
Materials Needed
1 Building tape
2 Flashing
3 Safety Glasses
4 Screw Driver
Total Cost
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Estimated Time
2-3 Hours
Skill Level: Advanced
The total cost and duration may vary when hiring a handyman!

Project Overview

two people looking at strip of flashing being installed on a front door

It is important to flash the outer windows and the doors of your home. This protects your home from getting rain water inside. Flashing around a door keeps the area dry and keeps the building in the best shape possible. Without any flashing around the door, water can intrude the home which can lead to damage from the moisture. Mold can get into your home and the air quality indoors will be compromised without the flashing as well. The cost you will have if you don’t have flashing around the door could be quite substantial, especially if you have to start doing structural repairs to your home because of the water damage.

It is quite common for new construction areas to use flashing during the building process. However, many of the homes which are already built may not have this. It is important to remember two main things when doing flashing around a door. You want to use a water-resistant barrier such as house wrap. You should also use shingle-type membranes so the top portion hangs over the bottom part. This helps the water to drain away from your home or building.

Sometimes you can just install wrap and a drip cap. This type of flashing is done often for doors and windows. However, many building and manufacturer codes require more detailed flashing so the studs, sheathing and interior walls stay protected. Keep in mind that you must plan on how you are going to put flashing around the door before you just jump right into it. You need to use the right materials so that your home or building gets the best protection from any moisture.

Step-By-Step Instructions


Knowing the Types of Flashing

strip type of flashing on top of the door frame

The first thing you should do to install flashing around a door is to know a little bit about the types of flashing. Depending on the type of door you may have, there are different types of flashing that you may want or need to use. If you have a metal or vinyl door, you may want to use a drip-cap type flashing above the door or over your upper trim. If you have a wood area, you may want to use the drip cap over your trim (this is called brick molding).

You can also contact the manufacturer of your door and ask which type of flashing they recommend. There are self-adhesive types of flashing as well. These are sort of like sheets that are used on the edges of roofing. However, they are applied to doors and windows instead. If you are putting in a new door, this type of flashing will go over the inner part of your framing. If you already have a door, this type would cover the sheathing only. The self-adhesive type can be placed over building wrap.


Cutting the Drip Cap

person with a safety razor cutting the drip cap

Once you have decided on the type of flashing that you will be using, it is time to cut the drip cap. You should always make sure that you cut the drip cap half an inch larger than the top of your door. It should hang off the edge. This way you can hammer it down to the edge of the door frame. You want to do this so the water rolls off from it and away from your door.


Placing the Nails

person holding a rectangular frame in front of an exposed door opening

Once you have cut your drip cap, you can then place the nails. You will need one on each side of the drip cap where it hung over the edge and you hammered it down. Then, you will also need a few of them on the top area of the drip cap as well. If you have any of the excess building paper or wrap, now would be the time to trim this off. You don’t want to leave it hanging.


Caulking the Edges

Person holding flashing on the edge of the door frame

Once you have trimmed the excess paper, you will want to get the caulk out. You will want to place some of the caulk under your angle cuts at the corners of your drip cap. You should also put some under the edges of the drip cap itself.

Once you have placed a little bit of caulk under the edge of your drip cap and the edge of the angle cuts, you can smooth it out by pushing on top of the paper easily. Now that you have put the caulk on and smoothed it out, you can place the building tape over the angle cuts.


Finally, you can place a line of caulk alongside the door jamb. Once you have done this, you can put some caulk along the outer trim spaces and the inner door jamb as well. Installing flashing around your door does not have to be complicated. By doing this, you are protecting the interior part of your home from getting wet when it rains. This also keeps the air inside of your home fresher as well.

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