A garage is a place for parking and maintaining vehicles. It is also used to store expensive cars, tools, spares, workbenches, and precious sports accessories. The security and protection of these items are of prime concern.
A well-built garage door helps to secure all these items. Bad weather and bugs can damage expensive vehicles if the garage door has a gap under the bottom.
A bottom seal is the best idea to fill the gap under the garage door. The bottom seals are generally rubber or nylon made and it is attached to the bottom of the door with a retainer.
The bottom seal is handy to protect the bottom surface of the door and it quietly opens and closes the door without damaging the floor surface and door bottom.
Some garage doors are installed on uneven surfaces. These garage door bottom seals also fill the uneven gap under the door and protect the garage.
The garage door bottom seals are also helpful to keep the garage clean and tidy. The garage door seals are prone to wear and tear and need replacement after completing their service life.
Garage bottom seals differ in size and shape. All the garage door bottom seals are not suited with every door. The design of the door is a key factor to decide the type of seal.
You must know the design of your door bottom design before buying a suitable bottom seal for your garage door.
Here will discuss the different types of bottom seal, their advantages, and their replacement method. This will be helpful for you to better understand and determine which one suits best for your garage door.
- Types of the Garage Door Bottom Seals
- Benefits of the Garage Door Bottom Seals
- Alternative of Garage Door Bottom Seals
- Installation and Replacement of Garage Door Bottom Seals
- Maintain the Garage Door Bottom Seal
Types of the Garage Door Bottom Seals
There are different types of garage door bottom seals. The most common types include:-
- J-Type bottom seal
- T-Type bottom seal
- Bulb type bottom seal
- Beaded type seal
- Brush type seal
Let’s try to elaborate on these seals one by one.
These bottom seals are called J-type seals due to the formation of J when the door closes. These types are seals are best suited for single-channel retainers.
These are best to use this kind of garage door. These are also useful for shipping containers and commercial storage units.
This bottom seal forms rubber protection at the bottom of the door and stops the winds, ice, and bugs from entering the garage door. It saves the stored items in the garage from the bad weather.
As the name implies this kind of bottom seal forms a T shape on each side of the door bottom. The T on each side of the door bottom resembles the U shape.
These seals are perfect to use with the double retainer garage door. The seal locks each side of the door bottom into the retainer. This type of garage door bottom seal also suits well the uneven floor surface and fills the bottom gap completely.
These seals tightly close the garage door bottom and don’t allow the passage of rainwater, melted ice, rodents, snakes, and bugs through the garage door.
Bulb Type Bottom Seals
Bulb type bottom seals are circular at the lower part and contracted at the upper side. It forms a P or T shape at the bottom of the garage door.
It fits best on even surfaces and literally tightly seals the gap between the door bottom and floor surface. These seals are normally made of high quality flexible rubber material which resists wear and tear and doesn’t break or deform under load.
These seals don’t have anything to go in or out of the garage. These protect the vehicles stored in the garage and avoid rusting or ducting of vehicles. These are best for weatherproofing the garage.
Beaded Type Bottom Seals
The beaded type bottom seals are particularly designed for the double channel retainer garage doors and doors having circular grooves.
These seals form a T and are ideal for completely flat and even floor surfaces. These are normally 3 inches wide and have ribs at the outer surface.
These seals help to avoid freezing on the floor surface. These seals slide into the door channel to tightly seal the door bottom. These seals are not suitable for uneven and curved surfaces.
Brush Type Bottom Seals
As it is clear from the name, these seals have a brush attached at the bottom. These seals are good for residential garage doors, these seals better suit the commercial garage doors.
Benefits of the Garage Door Bottom Seals
A well maintained garage door bottom seals have plenty of benefits. The main benefits of these seals are summarized below.
Inclement weather conditions are detrimental to the garage and vehicles stored in the garage. The rubber seals installed at the bottom of the door tightly seal the gap under the door.
Weatherproofing is the main reason for opting for these seals, and these seals work wonders and don’t allow the rainwater to pass from the garage door and damage the stored items.
Garage doors are often installed on uneven and curved floor surfaces that allow the seepage of rainwater.
Weather can be really extreme sometimes and you don’t have to worry about the accumulation of rainwater inside the garage if you installed a good quality rubber seal under your garage door.
These rubber seals also protect your garage from the ice and melted snow. The rubber seals installed on the bottom of the garage door also save the garage from the wind driven dust and debris and avoid rusting of the vehicles.
A properly maintained rubber seal also allows you to control a human friendly temperature inside the garage.
Working in the garage during winter is particularly tough if the garage gets cooler. The cold inside the garage will distract your attention from the work and you cannot repair the vehicle comfortably.
A leaked garage door can allow the cool air inside the garage and reduce the heat in the garage. A rubber seal installed at the bottom of the garage door will provide a strong barrier at the bottom of the door and will allow the cool breeze to pass through the door.
At the same time, a tightly sealed door holds the heat inside the garage and doesn’t allow it to escape through the door. This makes the garage energy efficient and you can save a lot of energy and extra money incurred on the energy bills.
Keeps the bugs and Snakes out of Garage
If the garage door is not sealed, bugs, insects, and poisonous snakes can enter the garage at the night and can harm you in the morning when you open the garage door.
A properly installed rubber seal under the garage door fills the thinnest gap under and makes it impossible for the snakes, bugs, rodents, and insects to enter the garage.
You don’t have to worry about dangerous insects while opening the garage door.
Keeps the garage Clean and Tidy
Dust, dirt, and moisture can be detrimental to the vehicles stored in the garage. The moisture and dust can rust the vehicles and damage the expensive vehicles.
A tightly sealed garage door helps to contain the dust and debris out of the garage and virtually saves your vehicles from getting rusted.
This also helps to keep the garage clean and tidy even during the heavy winds.
Alternative of Garage Door Bottom Seals
There are some other seals which can also be installed on the bottom of the garage door depending on your requirements.
The threshold shield is installed on the floor surface instead of the door bottom. These are made high quality rubber materials and can bear the heavy load of the garage door.
These seals also reduce the noise of the garage when fully closed. These seals deliver higher durability and last for a long time. These seals are easy to install as well.
The most common advantage of these seals is these seals retain the dust, dirt, and debris at the door of the garage and don’t allow this crap to enter the garage.
These seals are also useful during heavy winds and storms and keep the wind driven water out of the garage, thus saving the vehicles stored in the garage.
Reverse Angle Mount Seal
These seals are like a big U. These seals are also installed at the bottom of the door. The door bottom fits snuggly in the seal and works a replacement for the brush seal. Generally, these seals are installed on heavy duty commercial garage doors.
Installation and Replacement of Garage Door Bottom Seals
The rubber seals installed at the bottom of the garage door are likely to deteriorate after a useful life mentioned by the manufacturer. The heavy load and friction of the garage door also play an important role in the depreciation of rubber seals.
The continued bad weather can also be detrimental for these rubber seals. Once this rubber gets worse, its replacement is necessary to protect the vehicles stored in the garage, if the damaged rubber seal is not replaced at the time, it can really damage the garage items.
Necessary precautions must be adopted while replacing and installing the old rubber seal. It can be comfortable carried out by two persons.
You must also have the right tool to undertake the job. Following steps must be followed while replacing the damaged and worsen old garage door bottom rubber seal.
First of all, you know which type of bottom seal is already installed on the door. Seal of has different sizes and shapes. To determine the right type of seal, raise the door to a convenient height; take a photo of the rubber seal and retainer.
Cut a few pieces of the rubber seal with a sharp knife. This will enable you to decide the right type of rubber to be replaced.
It will also be helpful to ascertain the condition of the aluminum retainer, whether it should be replaced or left as it is.
Measure the Bottom Seal
Measure the width of a cut piece of bottom seal. Check the style orientation of the seal, generally, T shaped, bulb shaped, J shaped and beaded type seals are used.
Ascertaining the style and the width of the seal will help you to finalize the seal type. Also, check whether the seal slides into the retainer or it is a flat type of seal.
Following this step will make it easy to correctly choose the type of seal to be installed on the bottom of the garage door.
After finalizing the type of the seal measure the width and the length of the garage door bottom. Don’t go with the garage opening as the door can be a little larger than the garage opening.
Also correctly measure the door width. Generally, single car garage is door are 8 feet wide while the 2 car garages are 16-18 feet wide.
It is very important to know the exact dimensions of the door before installing or replacing the old rubber seal.
Remove the old damaged Rubber Seal
Raise the garage door at a convenient height. Put the vise grips on the vertical tracks just below the bottom track.
Untuck or unscrew the end of the seal from one end of the retainer, pull the seal y slide through the track. You can also use a sharp knife to remove the old seal.
Also, check the condition of the retainer, if it is okay, keep it attached to the door bottom, it is damaged or broken, remove the retainer as well.
Clean the Retainer
Use a screwdriver to scrub the entire length of the retainer to remove all the remains of the seals and make the surface smooth. Clean the retainer with a wet cloth.
Check the retainer for any damage or dent. If there is a dent on the retainer, remove the dent with a suitable tool to make it flat and fit for the installation of the new seal.
Lubricate the Retainer
Lubricate the retainer with a soap or detergent. Use a sponge to apply the soapy water on the retainer length. Apply the soapy water in such a way that the water is dripping over the surface of the retainer.
The soapy water quickly adheres to the seal in the retainer channel. Using a lubricant other than soap and detergent can be detrimental for the rubber material.
Install the New Seal
Inert the T ends of the new seal into the retainer and pull the seal with help of a helper. A single person cannot install the seal properly.
One person will insert the seal into the retainer and another person will pull it. Once the pulling of the seal is over, pull a 3-inch extra seal out of the retainer. Now fold this extra seal into itself.
This should be done on both sides. Screws can also be put on the ends of the seal to hold it properly. After the installation process is complete, remove the vise grips from the track and lower the door. Plug the door opener back into the outlet.
Run the door opener and check if the seal is correctly installed on the bottom of the door.
Maintain the Garage Door Bottom Seal
Take good care of the rubber seal installed at the bottom of the garage door. Inspect the seal periodically and replace if any part of the seal is damaged or worn out.
This will extend the life of the bottom seal. The garage door bottom is very important to protect the vehicles stored in the garage.
It also saves your tools, spares, and other equipment. Properly maintained garage door bottoms seal will keep the rodents away from the garage and keep it neat and clean.