Small gaps and cracks in your home’s outer envelope let cold winter air inside, negatively impacting your comfort and raising your heating bills. This simple how-to guide to caulking and weatherstripping can help you seal air leaks and save on your utility bills this winter.
Guide to caulking and weatherstripping: Uses for caulk
Caulk is a flexible compound that usually comes in a canister and is applied with a caulk gun. The most common uses for caulk include:
- Around window and door frames
- Around faucets, water pipes, ceiling fixtures and drains to prevent water damage
- Over gaps between stationary building materials measuring less than a quarter-inch wide
Guide to caulking and weatherstripping: Applying caulk
- Before you apply caulk to a window frame, door frame or other surface, practice on a disposable surface to get a feel for the caulk gun. Then, move on to the actual application.
- Clean the area to be sealed. Remove old paint and caulk, and dry the area thoroughly.
- Apply the caulk at a consistent 45-degree angle. Avoid stopping and starting for the best application possible.
- Apply enough caulk so the compound sticks to both sides of the gap and seals it thoroughly.
- Clean up oozing caulk before it dries.
- Finish the application by running a dampened finger over the caulk and smoothing it out.
Guide to caulking and weatherstripping: Uses for weatherstripping
This material is most commonly used in movable joints of windows and doors. When installed correctly, it compresses and seals the air out completely.
Guide to caulking and weatherstripping: Applying weatherstripping
- Always measure twice, cut once to avoid errors.
- Apply weatherstripping to clean, dry surfaces generally when it’s above 20 degrees outside (check the manufacturer's recommendation when unsure).
- Press the weatherstripping firmly in place in the window or door jamb along the frame’s entire length.
- Test the material’s compression by closing the window or door on it to ensure you have installed it correctly.
With this guide to caulking and weatherstripping, you’re ready to seal the air leaks in your home. For more information, please contact P.K. Wadsworth Heating & Cooling today. We serve residents in the greater Cleveland area.
Paul Wadsworth is the President and Owner of P.K. Wadsworth Heating and Cooling. For 37 years, Paul has been providing heating and cooling services to the Greater Cleveland area. P.K. Wadsworth has been a trusted Cleveland HVAC service company for 75 years. The company understand the area's construction and local heating and air conditioning needs. Paul has an MBA from the University of Michigan and a B.S., Industrial Engineering from Purdue University. He's been President of the Cleveland Air Conditioning Contractors of America and a founding member of the local chapter. Paul was born and raised in Cleveland and has been active in the local community. He resides in Cleveland, Ohio with his wife and two sons.
The opinions and statements contained in this article are for general informational purposes only and are not instructions. Only trained, licensed and experienced personnel should attempt installation/repair. The author assumes no liability for the opinions/statements made in this article. Any individual attempting a repair or installation based on this article does so at their own risk of loss.