Ever notice that when you close your garage door, you can still see some light peeking through the bottom? No, this doesn’t mean something is “wrong” with the door – garage doors are actually designed like this so that they don’t get scraped, cracked or otherwise damaged every time you lower the door to the floor.
And while this is great for the condition of the door itself, it’d not so great for keeping your garage space free from unwanted intruders. Though small, the space under your garage door can make way for:
• Hot air
• Cold air
• Mice and other small pests
• Rain and moisture
Obviously, you don’t want to find rodents, ant infestations and so on in your garage space, and you definitely don’t want particularly hot or cold air making its way into your garage, and, eventually, your home itself, where it can jack up heating and cooling costs considerably. So, what’s the solution?
Weather-Stripping With Garage Door Thresholds & Door Sweeps
Today’s homeowners who want to lower their electric bills and keep intruders at bay have two highly effective weather-stripping options: garage door thresholds and garage door sweeps.
Thresholds are rubber barriers that adhere directly to your garage floor. When you lower your garage door, the threshold assumes the pressure, creating an airtight seal that prevents pests, moisture and particularly hot or cold from coming through.
Should you go this route, though, make sure you thoroughly clean and dry your garage floor before installing it. This is also one of those areas where paying a little more upfront pays off in the long run. A threshold is not an expensive piece, but you still want to opt for the thickest, most durable model you can find. Please note, however, that thresholds don’t always work well with tilt-up style doors, so if your home has this model, consider instead using a door sweep, or doubling up and using both.
A door sweep differs from a threshold for several reasons, among them the fact that, rather than attach to the garage floor, like a threshold, door sweeps affix directly to the garage door. In most cases, the door sweep is comprised of rubber. If your door is wooden, you can attach the door sweep using nails or staples. You may also be able to affix it using an aluminum track along the bottom of the door.
Weather-Stripping Maintenance Tips
Like your other garage door components, weather stripping can wear down and decrease its functionality over time. When you are performing your garage door maintenance or otherwise getting your home ready for winter, check your weather-stripping for signs of cracking, tearing or other obvious damage. You may need to lubricate or replace it on occasion to ensure it continues to get the job done.
We’ve updated a previous version of this article that was published in January 2014.