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  • Writer's pictureDarrin Card

How To Replace Door Weather-Stripping

Updated: Mar 7, 2019

Do you feel cold drafts coming through your entry door? Do you see light around the edges when the door is shut and latched? If that is the case you may be loosing a large amount of energy through those cracks and replacement of your weather-stripping may be necessary. Weather-stripping can become cracked, deformed, or torn. The weather-stripping is the small piece of rubber or foam that runs around the jamb of the door and seals the door when it is closed. In order to replace the weather-stripping you must first decide which kind you have.

Sunlight Through Door = Big Drafts

New Style Doors

Newer style doors have a slot that runs around the jamb for the weather-stripping to lock into. You should first remove the weather-stripping and take a piece to your local home center or hardware store to match up the sizes. To replace simply push the new weather-seal into the slot. I have found using a putty knife to very carefully push in the weather-stripping and cleaning out the channel with a flat head screwdriver make the installation very easy. If your weather-stripping is not available please follow the directions below.

Older Style Doors

Some doors, especially those that are older, do not have slots for installing weather-stripping. In that case there are four main options of retrofit weather-stripping: vinyl bulb or flap with a metal flange, wrapped foam on a wood flange, and wrapped foam on a metal flange. I recommend installing the vinyl wrapped wood option as they will last longer, hold their shape better, and cover larger gaps. They are also easier to install than some of the other options that are available.

Installation of Vinyl Wrapped Wood Flange Weather-stripping


Tape Measure

Coping Saw

Speed Square


1-1/2 Stainless Steel Finish Nails (if not included with the weather-stripping)


Weather Stripping (Be sure to buy enough to do two sides and the top)

Step 1: Measure Jamb

Start by closing the door and measuring the jamb from the outside of the home. Be sure to measure tight into the corners. Transfer the measurement for the top onto your weather-stripping using a sharp pencil.

Step 2: Install Top Piece of Weather-stripping

Cut your top piece of weather-stripping using a coping saw on the wood and scissors or a sharp utility knife on the wrapped foam. Install the weather-stripping making sure the foam makes a complete seal across the whole top of the door. You may have to push the seal a little in the middle if your door is warped. Nail about 2” in on both sides of the door and about every 12” after leaving the nails sticking up just a little in case adjustment is needed.

Step 3: Install Side Pieces

Next cut your side pieces using a coping saw, matching the profile of the top weather-strip. Coping can be a little hard to do the first few times so practicing on a scrap piece may be best. You may have to file or sand you cuts to get the best fit. I like to use spray glue to glue a piece of sandpaper to a length of dowel with a diameter close to the radius of my cut to make sanding easier. Make your miter at the top of the door and nail about 2” from the end. Be sure to check that the weather-stripping is sealing the entire length of the door and tack every 12” using the finish nails, again leaving them sticking up just a little.

Step 4: Testing and Finishing

Replacing your weather-stripping as part of a whole house weather sealing project can help save you significant amounts of money on your energy bills and keep you home more comfortable and enjoyable. If you would like to know more or have questions feel free to email me at

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