The Sexier Side of Weather Stripping

New Weatherstripping sealing an exterior door

Leading a more ecologically sustainable life isn't always chock full of new and exciting changes. Sometimes a simple, even mundane, tweak makes a real difference. Weather stripping and weather proofing your home and office is one of those meaningful changes that makes a difference, even if it doesn't seem very 'sexy'. Weather stripping is all about increasing home efficiency and energy conservation which is the easiest way to reduce your heating and cooling bills.

Weatherstripping a house is something you may remember seeing your father doing when you were a kid. You might even remember your dad griping about heating bills as he caulked and sealed around the windows and doors. Well, good old dad was right on the money. Sealing your home against air leaks can save 21.5% in annual heating bills and 9% in cooling bills or more (U.S. Dept. of Energy)! Suddenly, weather stripping just got a little bit sexier.

I started to see the 'sexy' side of weatherstripping at a previous job. Our office was in the basement and had old, rattling, metal frame windows. Those windows were decades old and leaked air like a sieve. It was impossible to keep that office warm in the winter even running a energy-hungry space heater full-blast. After a couple of weeks wearing my coat at my desk and cupping my hands around a hot coffee mug I had enough. I went to the hardware store and bought a window sealing kit that used double-sided tape and plastic film to stop the air leaks. The office was immediately warmer and we could work without shivering at our desks. Shivering is very definitely un-sexy and weatherstripping raised the temperature and morale several degrees. You might think that I would have set off on a campaign of weatherstripping, but getting warm sapped my motivation.

It took a gentle, but persisent, reminder from my significant other that the laundry room was chilly to send me back to the hardware store. While I could easily spend days in a hardware store I had a mission to find weather stripping to seal a door. The exterior door to our laundry room fits poorly in the frame so I chose a metal-backed tubular vinyl gasket weatherstrip. The metal is screwed into the door jamb and seals against the face of the door compensating for the uneven gap between the door and frame. Now even with the wind blowing outside our laundry room is as warm as the rest of the house. Having a warm house leads to a warm housemate and that can be very sexy.

Follow the links below to find comparisons of weatherstripping and caulking compounds and other materials to seal your home and office against air leaks. The folks at your local hardware store can help you choose the best weatherstripping for your doors and windows and show you how to install it. Try not to get sidetracked by all fun tools they have, you may have a sexy someone waiting to be warmed up.

More Info

Weatherize Your Home ­ Caulk and Weather Strip

U.S. Dept. of Energy - Air Sealing Your Home