Door Sweep Installation (2024)

Installing Your Door Sweep

A. Slide-On door sweeps:

Open your door and grab the end of your old door sweep with your fingers or needle nose pliers and pull it out. If you have trouble sliding in the new door sweep, try a little liquid soap on the top at the beginning of the track to make it slide in easier.

B. Drive-On door sweeps:

Open your door and pull or pry the sweep downward, removing the barbs on the sweep from the slots on the underside of the door. Install your new sweep by pushing the sweep in. If you have trouble installing with the door on the hinges, you might have to take the door off of the hinges.

C. Wrap-Around door sweeps: (see installation in part 3 ofweatherproofing video)

Open the door and remove the old sweep. If the old sweep is screwed or otherwise tightly fastened to the bottom of your door, you may need to remove the door from hinges. Slide the new sweep on, using a block of wood or a hammer as needed to tap the sweep into place. Trim excess with scissors, shears, or a small hand-saw. Adjust the sweep up/down as needed to tightly seal (overlap about 1/8") against the top of your sill. Install screws on inside of home, drilling pilot holes as needed (especially if you have a steel door).We recommend flat head 1/2" long screws. For wood or fiberglass doors, use pan head wood screws, course thread. For steel doors, use sheet metal pan head screws.

D. Staple-On door sweeps:

To install, first take the door off its hinges and lay flat. Then remove the old sweep from the bottom of your door and clean the bottom of the door. Next apply 2 beads of silicone caulking to the top of the new sweep. Press the new sweep on the door bottom, the alignment lip should rest flush against the interior door face. Wipe free any excess caulking. Secure new sweep in place with ~3-5 staples or tacks. Rehang door on its hinges and you are finished!

Maximizing the Life and Effectiveness of Your Door Sweep

Here are some ideas to extend the life of your door sweep. When installing a new sweep, we recommend you take a look at your door to see if there might be adjustments that you could make to optimize your sweep’s performance.

1) Check that your door is square

A door sagging in its frame will quickly wear out its sweep. So, first, you should make sure your hinge screws are tight. If a hinge jamb has separated at the top from the stud even a small amount (less than 1/8”), your door can lean toward and rub too tightly against the threshold at the bottom lock side of the door, and wear out the sweep prematurely. If this is the case with your door, you should firmly tighten the top hinge screws, and/or replace the outside screws in the top hinge closest to the weather stripping with 2 longer screws (2-1/8" long) to go through the hinge, jamb, and into the stud behind your jamb.

If your door is rubbing too hard against the threshold closer to the hinge jamb, you may need to lower the adjustable top strip on your sill (threshold). You should check to see if your door is hanging square within your jambs. Hopefully tightening your hinge screws helps your door hang square, but if not, then you need to either use hinge shims or rework the jambs to prevent excessive pressure and accelerated wear on the sweep.

2) Adjust your sill

If your sill is adjustable, you should check to see if you need to adjust it down to give the sweeps a little more room. If the sweep fits too tightly against the threshold, it will tear quickly. A good rule of thumb is that you should have room enough for one playing card or dollar bill above your sill but beneath your door and be able to pull the card or bill out from various spots under the closed door with a little back pressure, but it should not be firmly stuck.

4) Remove debris

You should also look to see if you have any debris caught under the door that could be rubbing and wearing the sweep. A rock or even a small pebble can cause a tear. It is a good idea to keep debris swept away from the threshold to prevent anything getting caught under the door and tearing the sweep.

5) Check if your pets are tearing sweep

Last, some people have pets that tear at sweeps. For this situation, usually customers just opt to replace their sweeps more often.

Questions? Email us

Door Sweep Installation (2024)


How tight should a door sweep be? ›

Adjust the sweep up/down as needed to tightly seal (overlap about 1/8") against the top of your sill.

Should a door sweep touch the ground? ›

Ideally, the sweep should be installed so that is comes in contact with the bevel on the threshold but where the sweep will not touch the flooring material (i.e. carpet, tile) as the door swings open and closed.

Is it better to put a door sweep on inside or outside? ›

Door sweeps are installed on the outside face of the door, preventing dust, water, and other elements from building up beneath the door and entering the home. Exterior door sweeps are typically made of vinyl, but they can also be made of brush material.

How to fix a tight door sweep? ›

Solution. With some force you can swing the door open. Look at the brush or vinyl weatherstripping and try to maneuver it so that the door can open easier. Once the door is open, bend the brush or vinyl back into place and slide it inside of the aluminum holder.

How much gap do you leave when fitting a door? ›

There should be a 2mm or 3mm gap between the door and the frame on both sides and the top. If you do need to cut the door down to size, keep in mind that you need to cut all four sides of the door equally whenever possible to retain an accurate shape or pattern if the door is panelled.

How much space do you need for a door sweep? ›

Measure the distance between the sides of the door frame at the bottom of the door. Deduct 1/16” from this measurement and cut the door sweep to that width. Use a hacksaw to cut the metal and use scissors to cut the vinyl sweep.

How to measure for door sweep? ›

To get started, and to make sure you choose the most appropriate door sweep, you need to measure the gap between the door and the threshold. You need to know the door width and the door thickness, as well. This'll help you select and custom fit the best door sweep.

What is the difference between a door bottom and a door sweep? ›

Door Sweeps (also called Door Bottoms) are the quickest and easiest to install. Sweeps are attached to the bottom of entry doors or doors to unheated areas. There are many types to fit different situations and budgets.

Can you put a door sweep on both sides of a door? ›

Some strip-style door sweeps come with an adhesive backing meant to stick directly to either side of your door. Others are mounted in rigid metal or plastic installation guides fastened to the bottom edge of doors.

What is the proper clearance under a door? ›

In general, the gap beneath an interior door will be between three-quarters of an inch and half an inch. This width depends largely on the type of flooring, as door frames are generally installed when the floor is unfinished. A standard door can have varying levels of clearance over different flooring types.

Where to place a door sweep? ›

Even though some types can be installed on interior doors, door sweeps should be applied on the outside face of exterior doors. This is to prevent dirt and debris from collecting underneath your door.

Do door sweeps keep bugs out? ›

Even if unwanted pests decide to come investigating, they won't find easy access around your doors. In addition to helping you keep insects and rodents out, door sweep brushes are also a good way to help you manage your energy costs if you have a climate-controlled warehouse or workshop.

How often do you need to replace a door sweep? ›

The general rule of replacement for door weatherstripping is every few years. How often you use a door can impact this, so entry doors and storm doors will generally require more support than sliding patio doors or hinged patio doors.

How snug should a door be? ›

A well fitted door should have a 2mm gap on either side and at the top. The gap at the bottom will depend on the thickness of your flooring/carpet. Plane the door as required, using an electric plane will help you get an even finish, and sand for a smooth finish.

Why is my door not closing tight against weather stripping? ›

If your door doesn't close, latch, or lock, then loosen the screws of the side that is binding, move the weatherstripping slightly away from the door, and retighten the screws. Conversely, if the door is not snug against the rubber tubing, adjust the weatherstripping so it seals well against the door.

How should a door threshold fit? ›

First, test how well the threshold fits – it should feel secure and not budge once set. When closing the door, it should close comfortably, if it doesn't, you can plane the bottom of the door until it's the right height.

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