If you’ve just installed a new doorway in your home, then you’ll need to finish the job by installing a threshold. A threshold is usually a solid wood piece of wood that is secured between the bottom of the door frame. It not only reinforces the frame of the door, but it also provides a weatherproof seal for the bottom of an exterior door that helps to keep rainwater and snow, as well as insects, out of your home.
The first step in installing a door threshold is to use a measuring tape to measure the width of the opening of the door at the bottom. You’ll need a piece of wood that fits securely into the space from end to end. The threshold will also need to be just low enough so the door can swing freely and not bind up.
As for the type of wood you should use for the threshold, you should choose one of the hardwoods. It will hold up well and resist rotting and decaying, especially if the door is an exterior one. Dry fit the piece in the doorway to make sure it fits well; trim off any excess wood. Then, use an electric drill with a small sized wood bit to drill four or five holes through the top of the wood threshold. Mark the locations of the holes with a pencil and a measuring tape first, so they will be spaced evenly apart.
The second step in this project is to remove the threshold, then clean out the area at the bottom of the door with a vacuum cleaner. Make sure that you remove any wood chips, sawdust, dirt, et cetera. Then, use a weatherproof caulking to create a tight seal underneath where the threshold will be installed. Follow the manufacturer’s directions on the container in order to achieve the best results.
The third step is to place the wood threshold into place in between the sides of the door frame. Press it down so that it fits snugly against the floor. Before you permanently nail the threshold into place, close and open the door several times.
Does the door open and close easily? There should be a slight drag when you move the door across the threshold. But, the threshold shouldn’t prevent the door from moving. It shouldn’t make it difficult to move across either. Is there a sizable gap between the door and the wood piece? If there is, you’ll need to adjust the height of the threshold by using small wood shims.
Finally, secure the wood piece into place permanently by nailing it. Place long nails into the holes you drilled, and nail them down flush with the wood. Use a weatherproof caulking to seal the edges of the wood piece.
You can paint, stain, or varnish the new threshold according to the decor in the room. If the threshold is on an exterior door, then you should use a weatherproof coating. If the threshold is on the interior, then you don’t need this extra protection. However, no matter where the doorway is located, you should seal the edges of the wood piece with a weatherproof caulking.
Some thresholds are made of aluminum, and they come in premeasured strips. If you are going to install a metal threshold, the installation is basically the same. Except, instead of using an electric saw to cut the piece to its correct width, you need to use a hacksaw.
After you cut the metal, smooth down the cut ends with a file. Then, install the threshold by using the nails or screws that came with it. The aluminum will have manufacturer – drilled holes already in it.