Top Garage Door Seal Types - and How to Make Them Last

White concrete garage with bright pink steel rolling garage door

Garage door seals are an almost invisible yet very important part of your overhead garage door. It is these small rubber, vinyl and aluminum components known as seals that make your garage door weatherproof and help to ensure it performs well in terms of energy efficiency and insulation. In order for a new garage door installation to be a complete success, the door in question needs to have a full complement of seals, all expertly fitted and in Grade-A condition. If not, the door will allow wind, rain, sleet, and snow into your garage, making it an unpleasant place in which to spend any length of time.

In addition to making it difficult to maintain a comfortable interior temperature inside your garage, poorly fitted or poor quality seals will allow dust, bugs, and other irritants to make their way inside your home. But where are these seals, what are they called and how do you inspect them to see whether or not they need to be replaced? Continue reading below for the answers to all of these questions and many more besides.

Garage Door Seal Identification, Inspection and Maintenance

To help you take care of your seals, our technicians have put together a guide to the different types that should be fitted to your garage door, together with some basic inspection and maintenance tips. As our team of technicians is responsible for garage door repair in Loveland and adjacent areas, each member of the team has a great deal of experience with the full range of seals to be found on modern garage doors.

Threshold Seals

These seals are actually attached to the floor of your garage rather than the door itself but they perform the same function as all the other seals and are one of the easiest to spot, which is why we are starting our journey of discovery with them. Threshold seals are designed to fit flush with the bottom of the door, and the bottom seal as we discuss below, providing additional weather protection in all conditions.

A quick visual inspection for obvious signs of wear and tear should be performed every few months or whenever you notice water making its way inside your garage. If you suspect your threshold seal needs to be replaced but you are not sure, wait until the next time there is a storm in your area. Inspect the floor of your garage at the height of the storm to see if rainwater is making its way inside. If the seal is worn or damaged, you will almost certainly notice some degree of water ingress.

Bottom Seals

As far as the seals that are directly attached to your garage door are concerned, this is widely considered to be the most important. There are a number of different types of bottom seals on the market today but all of them are designed to perform the same function: keep rainwater and other precipitation from entering your garage. As they begin to perish or suffer damage over time, they become less effective and eventually need to be replaced. All garage door repair experts should be able to replace bottom seals with ease. Among the most common types of bottom seals available today are:

  • Bulb Seals – These are in the shape of long tubes, which are narrower at the top than the bottom. They are designed to be fitted to single-channel retainers and are a good choice for uneven floors due to the way in which they work.
  • Beaded Seals – These seals are, in direct contrast to bulb seals, only meant to be fitted to double-channel retainers. Their design makes them particularly effective at stopping water from running under your garage door and into the garage itself.
  • T-Type Seals – As the name suggests, this type of seal is manufactured in the shape of the letter T (inverted). It is designed to be fitted to single-channel retainers and can be found on many different makes and models of garage door.
  • J-Type Seals – You will not be surprised to learn that these seals are made in the shape of the letter J, one on each side of your garage door. In common with T-type seals, J-type seals are designed to be fitted to single-channel retainers on the bottom of garage doors.
  • Whichever type you have, you can find them by looking at the bottom of your garage door when it is half open. Pay careful attention to any signs of wear and damage, and replace the seal if you are in any doubt as to its ability to keep out rain, sleet and snow in the future. If you have recently paid for a new garage door installation, don’t let this stop you from inspecting the bottom seal on your door. It may have been damaged during the installation, or not fitted correctly in the first place.

    Vinyl Stops

    These durable stops are an important part of the system of seals that help to ensure your garage door forms an effective barrier against the elements. When properly fitted, they should form a watertight seal from the top to the bottom of the door, on both sides, as well as from one side to the other, across the top of the door. Even though they are durable, they will eventually deteriorate over time, which means you need to pay attention to them during your regular seal inspections. As with the bottom seal, a close visual inspection should reveal any serious signs of wear and tear that may merit further investigation.

    Brush Seals

    Frequently used as an alternative to standard vinyl stops and bottom seals on commercial garage doors, brush seals are particularly effective at eliminating drafts, which makes them a good choice if you often use your garage as a workspace. However, they are much less effective at preventing water ingress. With this in mind, vinyl seals are normally preferred by most homeowners, both here in Loveland and across the USA.

    If you decide to go ahead with a garage door installation using brush seals, perhaps because of their draft-eliminating properties, you can inspect them in much the same way you inspect any other type of seal. A visual inspection, looking closely for signs of damage or wear & tear, will quickly reveal if there is anything to be concerned about as far as your brush seals are concerned.

    Reverse Angle Mount Seals

    Another alternative to fitting vinyl stops along each side of your door, reverse angle mount seals are manufactured from a durable thermoplastic rubber (TPR). They are designed to fit closely against the sides of a garage door, both inside and out, in order to prevent wind and precipitation from making its way inside. In common with brush seals, reverse angle mount seals (or reverse angle jamb seals as they are also known) are more commonly found on commercial garage doors than residential ones. However, they are still worth considering in some cases.

    Professional Assistance

    If you live in Loveland and you’re looking for a team that specializes in garage door repair and installation work, please don’t hesitate to call or message us if you need any professional assistance with your door seals.

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