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How to Draught Proof Doors

Knowing how to draught proof doors will prevent cold air from getting into your home. Blocking these draughts will help to increase the thermal efficiency of your home which will, in turn, improve comfort and potentially lower your energy bills.

However, going one step further and replacing old doors with modern doors would be the best long term solution and could potentially save you even more money on heating your home.


 
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Why should you draught proof doors?

If a draught is making its way into your home through the doors or windows, your heating system will have to work harder to keep your home warm. As a result, you could see your heating bills go up.

Draught proofing your doors has the potential to save you as much as £10-£50 a year on your energy bills – which makes it a worthwhile investment. Not only that but your home will be a much more comfortable place to live.

How to stop drafts around doors

It might sound obvious but doors that lead outdoors should be your main focus when it comes to draught proofing as this is where a draught is most likely to come from. Internal doors can also be draught proofed but there isn’t much point in working on doors between rooms that you heat regularly. Instead, turn your attention to doors that lead to rooms that aren’t heated so often.

There are a number of options when it comes to draught proofing doors that are all worth considering:

  • Get a keyhole cover: Even the smallest of gaps will be letting a draught into your home.
  • Cover your letterbox: A letterbox should have a flap on the inside and outside with a brush in between. If your letterbox is missing one of these then they’re well worth the investment.
  • Fit a draught excluder at the foot: There can often be a gap between the bottom of the door and the floor so a draught excluder (a brush or flap) can help to prevent cold air making its way inside.
  • Cover the sides of the doors: The space around the side of the door can let just as much of a draught into the home as the bottom so, again, a brush or some kind of foam can be used.
  • Fit double or triple glazing: For doors with a single-glazed window, an additional pane of glass will act as an extra form of insulation.

You can either draught proof doors yourself or hire a professional. While draught proofing doors yourself is likely to be the cheaper option, hiring a professional will give you the confidence that the work has been done to the highest possible standard.

How to fit a draught excluder around a door

Draught excluders are available in most DIY shops and resemble a long brush that stretches the width of the bottom of the door. This brush fills the gap between the door and the floor and brushes along the floor when it’s opened and closed.

Before you can fit the excluder to the bottom of your door, you’ll need:

  • Tape measure
  • Marker pen
  • Hacksaw
  • Pliers
  • Screwdriver

With all of these in hand, you can begin to fit the draught excluder to your door:

  1. Start by measuring the width of your door. Take the measurement right at the bottom of the door as this is where you will need to fit the draught excluder.
  2. The brush will be housed in a seal which can slide on and off. Take the measurement and mark it on the brush seal using the marker pen before removing the brush.
  3. With the brush removed from the seal you can now use the hacksaw to cut the seal down to the same width as your door (you should take precautions at this stage by wearing gloves and protective eyewear).
  4. Fit the brush back into the seal and mark where the excess brush appears from the seal before removing the brush again.
  5. Now you need to get the brush down to size too – don’t use the saw for this bit, instead use the pliers.
  6. Most draught excluders have a sticky side so you can stick it to the door, make sure the brush is touching the floor.
  7. There will be screw holes in the seal for you to screw nails into the door.

These are general instructions on how to fit a draught excluder to a door so please consult the instructions that will come with your draught excluder to ensure it’s done correctly.

Could it be time for new doors?

Draught proofing will only go so far when it comes to increasing the thermal efficiency of your home. The most effective and long term solution would be to replace your door.

Should you have recently noticed a draught coming through a door, that a certain room is colder than it used to be or if your heating bills are on the rise then these are signs that it’s time to replace the door. Further signs that you need replacement doors include:

  • Material broken or splitting
  • Warping (timber doors)
  • Opening, closing and locking your doors has become challenging
  • There’s light coming in through the bottom, sides or top of the door (will indicate draught)

There are a number of different door materials to choose from that all come with their own pros and cons:

Aluminium
Aluminium is most commonly used for sliding doors, used as the frame around large panes of glass. This is an incredibly strong material that’s also incredibly durable through even the most severe weather. Plus, if you’re conscious about the environment, aluminium is considered one of the most sustainable materials for new doors as it can be recycled using only 5% of the energy used to make it.

Composite
Composite doors are made up of a number of other materials, including uPVC, timber and insulating foam to form a single structure. Thanks to this, they take on many benefits and the insulating foam makes them a great option when finding a door that will prevent heat from escaping.

uPVC
uPVC is the most popular choice for UK homeowners, mainly because it’s the cheapest option. Short for Unplasticised Polyvinyl Chloride, uPVC is a strong and inflexible form of plastic and modern versions have a galvanized steel core which makes them incredibly difficult to break. In addition to being secure, uPVC doors are great insulators which will help to keep the heat in and could see your heating bills drop as a result.

Timber
Arguably the most coveted material for doors, timber has been a tried and trusted choice for years and offer a traditional charm. Not only are they nice to look at, wooden doors are energy efficient, will help to keep noise out and can last a considerable number of years. The only downside is the potential cost.

As well as the material, the potential cost of your new door will depend on the size and style too.

Door Material Potential Cost (without installation)
Aluminium £600 – £5,000+
Composite £550 – £2,000+
Timber £600 – £4,000+
uPVC £400 – £1,500+

If it’s time for you to replace the doors around your home then you can get free quotes from local door installers using Windows Guide. It only takes a few moments to complete our form – letting us know about the job you need doing – and we’ll be able to use that information to match you with qualified installers.


 
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