The process of weatherproofing protects your home both inside and out. According to Ace Hardware, you could have gaps in your home even if you think it’s currently covered. This allows both cold and hot air to get into your house. For the homeowner, this means that you’ll end up blasting your heater far more than necessary to keep all of the chills out of your home and yet you might still feel cold anyway. In the summer, you’ll end up cranking the air conditioner because it will always feel warm. Not only will your energy bills increase, but these gaps act as the perfect entry for small animals and insects to invade your space.
Weatherproofing your home is completely necessary, especially if you’ve never inspected the quality of your weatherproofing.
What Is Weatherproofing?
Weatherproofing is the process of covering those gaps that naturally exist in your home to prevent air and critters from getting in or escaping. This process also keeps out debris and excess water. Weatherproofing maintains the health of your home and prevents the gaps from becoming bigger and causing more of a problem in the future.
You can and should weatherproof any part of your home, but the most important parts are the walls’ foundation, the roof, around any cooling or heating ducts, around any pipes, around any downspouts, around any flashing vents, around any gutters, around all doorframes, and around all windows. You should also weatherproof your chimney and garage door if you have one. If you have any stucco or bricks as a part of your home’s foundation, weatherproofing these benefits you as well.
When you weatherproof your home, you cut down on the steadily rising cost of your energy bills from cold or hot air getting in. You prevent small animals and insects from getting into the home and wreaking havoc, negating the need for an exterminator. You also maintain the structural integrity of the home.
What Materials Do You Need For Weatherproofing?
The most common materials that are used for weatherproofing are caulk and weatherstripping. You have a number of different caulks to choose from. Some of these are more affordable, others more durable, and some stickier than others. Weatherstripping is used to create a seal around surfaces like your garage door, your windows, or your doorframes. This prevents excess air from getting in or out. Like caulk, various types of weatherstripping exist that are intended for different purposes and come in a number of textures.
Caulk or Weatherstripping: The Benefits of Both
Both caulking and weatherstripping have benefits when it comes to weatherproofing your home. You can use one or the other, but it’s best to use both in conjunction with one another. When you go shopping for caulk, as mentioned, you have plenty of options. You can choose:
* Acrylic latex caulk can handle plenty of moisture but cannot handle too much cold. It will last you for about 10 years, it’s rather sticky, you can paint over it, it’s quite elastic, and it goes well over windows and doorframes.
* Oil-based painter’s caulk is a very affordable option. As the name suggests, you can paint over it. However, due to its low cost, it won’t stick well and only lasts for about a year or two.
* Silicone-latex blended caulk combines silicone and latex for optimal stickiness, flexibility, and the ability to endure various weather conditions. It will last for more than 20 years in most instances, but it cannot handle extreme cold and you may not be able to paint over it.
* Butyl rubber caulk can handle plenty of moisture, you can paint over it, and it’s flexible. It will last for about three years and sometimes up to 10 years, but it’s probably the stickiest type of caulk.
* Urethane caulk will last anywhere between 20 and 50 years, making it a wonderful choice. It can adhere to a variety of materials like concrete, wood, asphalt, vinyl, brick, and metal. It also is sticky and flexible and probably some of the easiest caulk to apply. However, it cannot handle cold temperatures and smells as it dries.
* Latex caulk is very easy to use and is very affordable. You can paint over it and it has good flexibility, but you can only use it on porous materials. It will last for about three to 10 years.
* Silicone caulk also has a lifespan of about 20 to 50 years. It’s some of the easiest and best caulk to use since it’s flexible and sticky. It also comes in a number of different colors, but you will need solvent to remove it, you may not be able to paint over it, and it cannot handle extreme cold.
As mentioned, there are also a number of different types of weatherstripping that you can select from for your home maintenance jobs. These include:
* Foam weatherstripping is a soft type of weatherproofing that is intended for sliding doors, windows, and swinging doors. You simply remove the sticky surface on the back and apply this weatherstripping where you need it.
* Door bottom weatherstripping, also known as threshold weatherstripping, is used to cover up any gaps that may exist on your doors. By covering these gaps, drafty air cannot get in or out.
* V-type weatherstripping, also known as v-shaped weatherstripping, goes on the window jambs or the door’s sides. When applied, it fills the gaps on these jambs and sides. You can choose from bronze or vinyl v-type weatherstripping in most instances.