As temperatures drop in winter, it is time to turn up the heat.
If you are like most people, paying more for your energy is a good idea.
It is a great way to reduce your energy bills by winterizing your doors and sealing air leaks around external doors. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, up to 30% of your energy consumption can be lost through unsealed windows and doors. You only need a few inexpensive items to seal and detect air leaks. A professional door replacement might be required if you have an older home, but you can increase your home’s energy efficiency with some DIY winterization.
How to detect air leaks around exterior doors
While you can seal all the doors in your house, it is worth taking the time and looking for the weakest points first. This will allow you to close the gaps quickly and save money. These are the four most common ways to locate leaks around doors.
- When you are not using the outside door, shut it completely. Then, open the doors inside and look around for signs of sunlight. You have air leaks if you can see light.
- You can have someone shine a flashlight on the other side of the doorframe at night and watch for light beams entering the seal.
- Pass an incense stick or lit candle around the door edges. Air leaks can cause the flame to flicker or smoke to move in the opposite direction from the draft.
- To detect a cool breeze, place a damp hand on any suspected leaks.
How to seal air leaks around doors
These techniques can be used to trap warm air in your home if your test shows a leak.
- Caulk can be used to fill any visible cracks or holes. Check for cracks and holes on both the outside and inside of the doorframe. Allow the caulk time to dry and then reapply as necessary.
- Weather stripping should be applied around the doorframe. You should check the door every so often to ensure that it can be closed completely. You may have to add weather stripping to areas where there are more leaks.
- A draft guard should be placed between the threshold and the bottom of your door. You can also wrap a towel in a towel and place it at your door’s base.
- To strengthen the seal, lock the deadbolt when you close the door.
Now that you are familiar with how to winterize doors, make sure to inspect your windows to check for air leaks.