What To Do When Your Garage Door Has Air Leaks And Lacks Insulation

Posted on: 29 October 2015

An attached garage helps to serve as a buffer between the interior of your home and the elements. You want to make sure that it is an energy-efficient space that keeps out cold air during winter and is not vulnerable to bad weather and unwanted critters. When you live in an older home with a garage door that has not been replaced in over a decade and feel the structure does not offer enough all-around protection, you should consider performing some of the following upgrades.

Seal Gaps Around the Door

The gaps and cracks around an older garage door let out the warm air generated by your home's HVAC system. These openings can also let in dirt, bugs, rodents and water. In fact, mice can enter holes as small as the circumference of a nickel.

Excess water seeping into the garage can lead to mold growth and damage items you have stored on the floor.

Conduct a thorough examination of the garage door to uncover these open spaces. If you are on a tight budget and want to make sealing the gaps a DIY project, you can purchase weather strips, rubber threshold material for the bottom, caulking and steel wool to seal the holes.

However, it is in your best interest to hire a garage repair tech to inspect your door and seal the openings so you do not have to worry about missing spots or installing the repair materials incorrectly.

Insulate the Door

If you spend a lot of time in your garage, you want to make sure that it stays comfortable, even during the height of winter, as you work on home improvement projects or tinker with your car. Adding insulation to the garage door can seal in heat from a space heater and vents from central heating.

You can purchase garage insulation kits made of out soft spun fiberglass or polystyrene sheets. However, you must cut the sheets to size and use a putty knife to insert the material securely in between the garage door panels and door braces.

If you use fiberglass, you need to also protect your respiratory system during insulation by wearing a protective face covering that keeps the insulating particles from entering your nose and mouth.

Garage door installers can also retrofit a garage door by installing insulation.

Replace the Garage Door

In some cases, it is more sensible to just get rid of a dated garage door instead of trying to upgrade it, especially if the costs of improvements begin to escalate into hundreds of dollars.

Since the garage door will be your first line of defense against storms and freezing temperatures, you should purchase a weatherproof model made of heavy duty steel.

Weatherproof garage doors with steel frames come with a host of features that enable the structure to last for many years while providing insulation and soundproofing. When you shop for a new garage door, make sure it includes the following features:

  • Insulation that is invisible and injected into the garage door panels

  • Thermal seals between the joints of the garage door panels

  • Rustproof exterior to help keep the door's surface maintenance-free

  • Corrosion resistant weather seals to prevent moisture and air from entering the garage

While a weatherproof garage door may not match the aesthetics of custom structures made of wood, you can still choose from a wide selection of colors and designs. Weatherproof doors come in a variety of panel designs. In addition, you can add elements around the door opening, like wood trim as well as decorative eaves and corbels.

Before you give permission to a garage door technician to install a new door, make sure to find out if your town requires a permit for the structure. You may be required to submit details about the new door to the city and pay for a permit. Some local governments consider installing a garage door a type of home improvement and want to make sure the new structure adheres to municipal building codes and noise regulations.

For more information,  go to websites of local garage door companies or contact them in person.