Waterproofing for French Doors

Waterproofing leaky French doors help protect the doors and your home from water damage, mold and mildew.

Door Frame

French doors offer less protection from the elements than a solid exterior door.French doors offer less protection from the elements than a solid exterior door.
This project also seals up air leaks that can make the interior temperature difficult to control, resulting in higher energy costs. Protecting French doors against water penetration can include weatherstripping, new threshold seals, and sealing cracks in the doors.

Cracks or gaps in the door frame can allow water penetration during storms or heavy rain. Wood filler or waterproof, shrink/crack-proof silicone caulk can be used to fill cracks or gaps around the edge of the frame. Spray foam insulation should be used to fill larger gaps or holes.

Doors

Broken or water-damaged doors should be repaired or replaced. Wood filler or caulk can be used to fill cracks or gaps where sections of the door have separated. Caulk applied around the edge of glass panels helps seal the gaps. A coat of exterior paint or water sealant adds further protection.

Weatherstripping

Installing new, or replacing worn weatherstripping along the top and sides of the door improves the seal between the door and frame, preventing water penetration. It also prevents air loss and improves the energy efficiency of the door. A self-sealing door threshold provides a water barrier between the bottom of the door and the threshold.

Hardware

Rubber gaskets can be installed in the door handle assembly and locking mechanism to reduce water penetration, and prevent rust or corrosion of working parts. Loose hinges should be tightened to ensure proper alignment of the door. Misaligned doors do not provide a tight seal, and are prone to water leakage.

About the Author

Jeff O'Kelley is a professional photographer and writer, currently based in the Tampa, Florida area. His images and words have been featured by websites and publications such as CNN, Creative Loafing and Tampa Bay Times. O'Kelley holds associate degrees in telecommunications and website design from St. Petersburg College.