Our Draught Proofing Kit has been developed over the last fifteen years of fitting new and restored front doors. Although it’s very simple, we believe it’s the best solution for wooden doors for keeping those howling winter winds out (and creepy crawlies, and leaves, oh, and the noise from the road!).
If you need to buy a Draught Proofing Kit please take a look here…
A joiner is obviously the best person to do this work but if you’re giving a go yourself, here are full instructions and a troubleshooting section at the bottom if you get into any trouble.
Draught Proofing Pack Contents
Your Draught Proofing Kit comes complete with:
What you will need to fit draught proofing
Note: Please check how well your locks work. The night latch needs to be working properly before fitting, that is, the bolt needs to sit in the keep and actually lock the door. If the deadlock doesn’t engage, deal with that after fitting the Draught Proofing Kit, you may have to adjust this anyway.
How to fit your draught proofing kit
Fit the threshold first. The draught beads will hang over the front of this. The two long vertical pieces will usually need shaping at the bottom around the threshold.
Preparing to Fit the threshold
Remove any old threshold or piece of wood that’s down already and clear the area the threshold will sit.
Measure the width of the gap between the recesses in the frame, one side to another, and cut the threshold with your chop saw (or an old school hack saw). Offer it up and check it fits!
Note: If there are tiles or thick wooden flooring inside you may have to raise the thresher up on packers so that the top of the back of the thresher is higher than the floor level. The back of the thresher is 19mm from the level it sits.
You may need to trim something off the bottom of the door to leave a 6mm gap between it and the back of the threshold. A 6mm gap gives you plenty of room so the door doesn’t catch on the threshold and if there’s a wee bit of movement through subsidence or swelling of your door, there will still be some sort of gap.
When you have the threshold in place and to the right height, you’ll need to check the position of the door. The door should just touch up to the rubber on the front of the threshold. The surface of the bottom of the door should be at least a few millimetres below the top lip of the threshold.
You may have to trim a notch in the frame to allow the threshold to sit far enough forward. Mark it with a pencil and chisel the notch out.
Fix the threshold down
Sitting the threshold onto wood (floor boards or a wooden step) is no problem. Simply drive some 30mm screws through the holes in the threshold into the wood. You could run a thin line of silicone along the flat area underneath the threshold. This stops water ingress under the threshold. Be careful as you sit the threshold down that you don’t get silicone in places you don’t want it. Baby wet wipes are handy to have around if you do.
On Packers On Wood
If you have to jack the threshold up on packers (mentioned earlier) you must sit the packers close to the screw holes. A firm fixing like this will stop the threshold from rocking on the packers. Obviously, you may need longer screws to make up for the packer thickness.
When you have the threshold in place, mark the stone by poking a pencil through the screw holes for drilling. If your threshold is jacked up you’ll need to sharpen your pencil so that lots of lead is exposed and it will reach the stone or use a deep hole marker.
Drill the holes with a new good quality masonry bit!
The best drill to use for drilling a stone step is a rotary hammer drill. The hammer setting on an electric screw driver works of course but just like a cheap rotary drill, it’s a bit hungry.
Fill the holes with rawl plugs and screw the thresher in place.
Note: If you fear drilling the stone step, you could stick it down. The stone must be very clean, dust free and dry. The best glue that I’ve found for this job is Everbuild StixAll. There’s a flat, grooved area on the bottom of the threshold where you can apply the adhesive. It is advised to pop a screw into the frame each end of the threshold, just in the corner to keep it secured while the adhesive sets (leave them there though, they’ll do no harm).
PREPARING TO FIT THE draught proofing beads
The three pieces of draught proofing bead need to be touched up to the closed door and pinned onto the frame. To do this, they need to be mitred in the corners.
On the lock side of the frame, measure between the top of the frame where the beads will sit and the floor. Take a few millimetres off this number so the bead doesn’t reach the floor. This will leave a gap so water doesn’t soak up into the wood and rot it. This gap can be filled with silicone to reduce that even further.
Measure the hinge side in the same way.
Measure the gap at the top where the smaller bead will sit. You’re better cutting this bead a little bigger and trimming it down if needed. You can trim some off but you can’t trim some on!
Lay the beads out, work out which way the mitres need to be cut and mark them using your measurements.
Cut the beads at 45 degrees on a chop saw or by using a tenon saw and mitre box. Offer them up one by one to make sure they fit nice.
Fix the draught proofing beads in place
Close the door with the night latch key in the barrel of the lock. You’ll need to test out turning the key whilst pinning the first bead in place.
Knowing that the beads are all the right length, run a thin line of external caulk or glue along the large flat side of the bead (the bit that will be touching the frame) about 5mm from the front edge. Glue will stick the bead but caulk will also fill any irregular gap (Victorian door frames eh?).
Hold the bead on the lock side of the door in place, pushed up to the top of the frame.
Touch the draught proofing rubber up to the door. It should flex just a millimetre, any more than that and the key will be stiff to turn which could lead to breaking the key!
If there is too much pressure from the rubbers pushing on the door there will be too much friction between the lock barrel and the keep.
Bang a nail through the bead into the frame just near the lock.
Test the key turns, you’ll feel some resistance. This is where a pull on the night latch is handy, and one of the reasons we always fit one on a new or restored front door.
Close the door again and touch the top of the bead to the door in the same way, then bang a nail in there as well.
The bead between the lock and top should be touching the door now, if not, apply a little pressure so it does and drive home a nail every 10 or 12 inches in between.
Keep testing the key.
Now, with the door closed again, offer the bead up at the bottom to the door where the threshold is. You may see that the rubber doesn’t reach the door. Determine how much the bead needs to move toward the door (may be 4 or 6mm) and trim the bottom of the bead so it fits around the threshold. For this, we might use a baby hacksaw or a Stanley knife.
When that’s been done successfully, the bead should now touch up to the door and it can be nailed in place, say a few inches from the bottom.
Test and adjust in between there and the first pin, then nail the rest in place. Your first bead is in place and the key turns the lock without fear of breaking the key. If there is pressure on the lock you should use the latch pull whilst turning the key.
The Other Two Beads
Next up is the top bead.
Check it still fits. It may be too tight now the first bead is in place, trim if necessary but it should be a tight fit to close up the mitred corners.
Run another line of caulk along the back of the bead. Line up the corner so it matches up to the first bead on the lock side, roughly line up the other end of the bead.
Drive a nail a few inches from the mitred corner that you’ll lined up and close the door.
Adjust ‘the other end’ of the bead so the rest of the rubber touches up to the door and pin in place.
Now you’re a master, fit the last vertical bead, pushing it up to the mitred corner again. Then trim what you need to off the bottom.
Drive the nails home and sink them with a hammer and nail punch. Fill the holes with an external two-part wood filler.
One of the first things I teach the lads who work for me is to fill a hole with filler. You don’t need to see a load of filler piled up around a hole. This is hard to sand, impossible to sand flat without exposing wood.
Push filler in the hole then, with a thin metal ruler or such, scrape excess filler from the top starting in the middle of the hole, then the opposite way from the middle of the hole again. Leave as little excess as is possible. This will be easier to sand (if you need to at all, I’ve filled a few pin holes!). If you use two part filler, this can be touched with paint before it’s set as the filler doesn’t need air to set.
Depending on how well you’ve done your corners, they may benefit from a little external caulk. Be careful not to get this on the rubbers, it’s a pain to wipe off. If you do, baby wet wipes are handy.
Testing your draught proofing
The draught seal in the beads should be touching the door all around. From inside, you should see no light between the bead and the frame it sits on. The door should shut easily and touch up to the rubber on the front of the threshold. The key should turn reasonably freely when the door is shut and the lock should open easily from inside.
MAke sure your Locks work properly
You may find that a dead lock doesn’t work. The bolt doesn’t engage in the keep.
Adjust the keep so that the lock engages with the keep. I try to have a millimeter between the bolt and the inner edge of the keep hole so the door doesn’t need pushing to lock it.
Joiners are the best tradies to do this work but if you’re reading this bit, hey, you’ve got this.
The Night Latch Key Is Hard To Turn
If there’s too much pressure on the door with all that rubber pressing against it, you can get about a millimetre of movement by knocking the beading carefully with a block of wood and a hammer (obviously away from where the door will be). Try to do this square to the bead and not at an angle as the bead may split where the groove is cut to take the rubber draught proofing seal.
The Door Hits The Thresher When I Close It
There needs to be 6mm between the bottom of the door and the top of the threshold (as mentioned earlier). To achieve this, you may need to trim something off the bottom of the door. This is best done with the door off and on some trestles. I use a Festool Track Saw so the result is a perfect (Old School = hand saw).
Mark the door with your pencil before taking the door off!
The Door Pushes Against The Threshold
The rubber on the front of the threshold stops water and crawlies getting in. The door should just touch up to the rubber.
If the door pushes hard on the threshold, it needs moving forward, away from the door. This is covered above. Pressure here will stop the deadlock engaging.
Hopefully, you’ve fitted your Draught Proofing Kit successfully. Your door should be draught-free, warmer and quieter as well.
If you have any problem just get in touch and I’ll try my best to help out.
Why not read...
There was more to this one than I banked on. This front door restoration at Ladygrove House in Derbyshire had me carrying out more research into the Dakeyne family and their Georgian connections with the beautiful stone house. Finding the family’s coat of arms gave us an idea to recreate it in the leaded fanlight.