Improving the seal of your garage door will help keep dirt and debris from entering your garage, and can also improve energy use by keeping cold air out--an especially valuable quality in an attached garage. Sealing your garage can even offer certain health benefits by keeping rodents and insects from entering your garage en route to getting into your home.
Here are the three most common products to will help seal your garage door against the elements. Each is relatively inexpensive and easy to... install.
While addressing the weather-sealing needs of the main garage door, don't forget about any side entry doors you may have. Weather-sealing passage doors is done in much the same way as the main garage door--with bottom seals and side and top weather-stripping products.
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Garage Door Bottom Seal
This is a long strip of rubber or vinyl that attaches to the bottom edge of the garage door. The flexible material compresses when the door closes, sealing the gap along the floor to keep water, dirt, cold breezes and mice and insects from getting inside. Some garage doors have an aluminum track on the bottom that holds the seal. The bottom seal for this type usually has a raised flange that slides or snaps into the aluminum track. This style costs $40-$50 for a two-car garage door.
A less... expensive bottom seal (see photo) is just a single rubber strip that can be attached to wood garage doors with small nails or staples.
You'll know it's time to replace the bottom seal when you can see daylight through the bottom of a closed garage door.
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Garage Door Threshold Seal
This type of seal has the same function as the bottom seal described above, except that it is attached to the floor rather than the door. A good-quality vinyl threshold seal can be more durable than a bottom seal. It is installed with adhesive that is usually included in the package.
One potential downside is that the seal will prevent water from flowing out of the garage, and it makes sweeping a bit more challenging.
A two-car garage door threshold seal costs about $70.
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Garage Door Weatherstrip
Wind and rain can also get into the garage around the sides and top of the garage door. That's where a garage door weatherstrip comes in handy. You can buy a 30-ft. strip for about $20. Installation is simple, using the enclosed tacks. Side and top weatherstripping is usually installed at the same time a bottom or threshold seal is installed. In combination, these products create a very secure seal.
You can also find a complete garage door weatherstrip kit, which includes everything you need... to seal all four sides of the garage door. Installation requires a drill bit, screwdriver, and utility knife.
Weatherstrip kits for two-car garages range in price from about $70 to over $100.