Fix Air Leaks Around Windows | Stopping Door Air Leaks | HouseLogic

An average home loses up to 30% of its heating and cooling energy through air leaks. The most significant air leaks tend to occur around windows and doors. To stop air leaks and prevent your home heating and cooling dollars from vanishing in the wind, it’s important to seal any air leaks around windows and doors.

Check for air leaks

With windows and doors closed, hold a lit stick of incense near window and door frames where drafts might sneak in. Watch for smoke movement. Note what sources need caulk, sealant, and weather-stripping.

Seal air leaks around windows

If you have old windows, caulking and adding new weatherstripping goes a long way toward tightening them up.

Bronze weatherstripping ($12 for 17 feet) lasts for decades but is time-consuming to install.

Self-stick plastic types are easy to put on but don’t last very long.

Adhesive-backed EPDM rubber ($8 for 10 feet) is a good compromise, rated to last at least 10 years.

Nifty gadgets called pulley seals ($9 a pair) block air from streaming though the holes where cords disappear into the frames.

Seal air leaks around doors

Check for air leaks, and replace old door weatherstripping with new.

Foam-type tape has an adhesive backing; it’s inexpensive and easy to install. If it comes loose, reinforce it with staples.

Felt is either adhesive-backed or comes with flexible metal reinforcement. it must be tacked or glued into place. It’s cheap and easy to install, but it has low durability.

Tubular rubber, vinyl, and silicone weatherstripping is relatively expensive and tricky to install, but it provides an excellent seal. Some types come with a flange designed to fit into pre-cut grooves in the jambs of newer doors; check your existing weatherstripping and replace with a similar style.

Check exterior trim for any gaps between the trim and your door frames, and the trim and your siding. Caulk gaps with an exterior latex caulk ($5 for a 10-ounce tube).

Seal door bottoms

If a draft comes in at the bottom, check the condition of the threshold gasket. Replace worn gaskets. If you can see daylight under the door, you may need to install a new threshold with a taller gasket ($25 for a 36-inch door). Or, install a weather-resistant door sweep designed for exterior doors ($9). Door sweeps attach directly to the door and are easy to install.

By: Jeanne Huber

 

Pinning your Way to Pretty, Practical Home Improvements

More than just a place to browse eye-candy, Pinterest can be a handy source for remodel and repair information

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It’s treasure trove of images is an unlimited resource for organizing and planning projects. From picking paint colors to fixing clogged drains, we’ll show you how to put Pinterest to work.

Pinterest Basics

If you’re already on Pinterest, just scroll past this primer to the tips.

If you’re not using Pinterest, here’s the 411: It’s a virtual scrap board that allows users to find, save, and share images. Pinterest calls saved images “pins.”

When you save a pin, you’re asked to pick or create a board. Boards are how you organize pins by topic. For example, if you’re remodeling your kitchen, you can save all of your kitchen ideas on a board titled “kitchen.”

What else can you do?

  • Create collaboration boards that allow other people to pin their ideas to your boards.
  • Make your board secret so only you and the people you invite can see it.
  • Follow other boards created by Pinterest users. When you do, their images show up in your home feed.
  • Use your home feed to find new things to pin to your boards.

Tip: Pinterest is a great way to make sure family members, remodelers, and contractors are on the same page when it comes to projects, products, materials, and your vision.

No Need to Surf Multiple Sites

Although you can pin images from other websites to your board, you can also find all the products, tips, and DIYs you need right on Pinterest. Here’s an example:

When HouseLogic writer Dona DeZube was looking for countertops and floor tile to pair with her new cabinets, she searched Pinterest using the cabinets’ brand and style to find how others were using the cabinets.  She even found a few ideas on how to configure her cabinets.  Check out her board.

Tip: Eliminating pins is just as important as posting new finds. Edit your boards to save only the best combinations of ideas.

Search Tips

Some tricks for browsing through lots of pinboards for ideas:

Be specific when you use the search box. If you’re looking for flooring, search by the type of flooring you want, like wood flooring.

Filter results.
Right under the search box, you can toggle between Pins, Boards, and Pinners to get different views on your search:

  • When you click Pins, you’ll see pins of wood flooring.
  • When you click Boards, you’ll see boards with the words “wood flooring” in the title.
  • When you click Pinners, you”lll see boards created by companies that have “wood flooring” in their name.

Related: Should your Refinish Hardwood Floors Yourself?

Having problems finding something? Change the wording in your search. Let’s use clogged drains as an example:

  • Our search “how to unclog a drain” resulted in a gazillion solutions.
  • When we searched by “unclog a drain DIY,” we whittled the results to a more manageable few dozen.

Tip: When looking for instructions, try separate searches using the terms “DIY” or “tutorial” along with the name of your topic.

Tip: When you find a pin you like, scroll down. You’ll see an option to check out more boards that feature similar pins. Scroll down further, and you’ll see a list of related pins.

 

 

By: Deirdre Sullivan  is an NYC-based writer who’s obsessed with maximizing every inch of her urban dwelling

Image: Liz Foreman for HouseLogic

Copyright NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®.  Reprinted with permission.”

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