How to Winterize a Patio Door
You may not use your patio door as much in the winter, but that doesn’t mean cold air can’t seep through it. In fact, patio door frames and windows are some of the most common sources of cold drafts in the winter time. Not only does this decrease the temperature of your building, but it also increases your energy bills. Thankfully, there are some cheap and simple fixes to prevent that.
This guide explains how to winterize a patio door so your building can stay warm all winter long.
Check the Weather Stripping
Weather stripping is the soft seal that goes around your sliding door frame. Weather stripping comes in a variety of types including full threshold, door sweeps, tubular, and magnetic strips. It closes the gap between the door and the frame itself, so air and bugs cannot get in. Over time, the stripping will lose its elasticity, which means that it cannot expand to fill the entire gap. If the stripping is made of foam, chunks of it may come off and leave sizable gaps in the seal.
Weather stripping is very inexpensive, and it is easy to install. Simply remove the nails or adhesive holding the old stripping in place. Then follow the instructions on the new stripping to secure it to the door frame. You can get just about any color and style you need for your stripping, so it will blend seamlessly with the door and protect your building in the winter.
Replace Broken Parts
Sliding doors have a lot of moving parts. After extensive wear and tear, those parts may need to be replaced. A broken patio door lock may prevent the door from shutting fully or staying shut, which will let in cold air. This also puts your home’s security at risk, so it is important to take care of patio door repairs as soon as you notice them. Worn or broken rollers are another area to inspect.
WR Hardware sells replacement patio door parts for almost every style of door imaginable. If you need help finding the right part for your doors, contact our helpline at 800-225-2517. We have many hard-to-find parts that are not listed on our website, so you can get the perfect piece you need for your patio door to function properly.
Caulk drafty gaps
You should inspect the framing around the patio door for gaps – both inside and outside. Caulk or use foam insulation to any areas that don’t impede the door’s movement.
Remove Pet Doors
If you have a pet door insert for your sliding glass door, you may want to remove it for the winter. The flap on the door will let in a tremendous amount of cold air, and so will your pet every time he comes in and out. Even if you put the locking door over the flap, there will be air coming through the gaps. You can put the insert back once the weather starts to warm up. Alternatively, you can look for a product called draft sealer which is specially made to seal the area between the pet door and close off the gaps.
Clean Debris in the Track of your Patio Door
Leaves, dirt and other debris may get stuck in the track of your patio door. The door will most likely glide over these items with ease, but that doesn’t mean you should let that happen. As the door moves over the debris, it may lift slightly off the track. This creates a thin pocket for air and bugs to get through in the winter. The movement may also damage the door and the track over time, decreasing the lifespan of your sliding patio door. Keep a small broom near the door so you can quickly sweep out the dirt as needed.
Use the right decor
A nicely fitted rug in front of the patio door will help prevent drafts (or a door snake). Likewise; using heavy or insulated drapes will help mitigate the flow of cold air. They will also block the sun, so, you must weigh the advantages of sun versus drafts.