How to Install a Door Sweep for Noise Reduction
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One of the good ways to get some quiet and a nice rest with your faulty doors is to install a sweep at the bottom of it.
These sweeps are easy to put and have a few more benefits besides noise reduction itself.
Why Would You Need a Door Sweep?
Even though most of the people use it for improving heating efficiency by installing it on their front door, it is perfect if you have a 3-month-old screamer in the room next to yours.
The thing is, my baby used to wake up every 4 hours until the age of one and that was driving us crazy.
My husband and I realized that we have to switch on the position of a guardian every few days so that the other one can get some rest.
But boy, did she have some vocal cords. You could hear her on the next floor, let alone next room!
It was a true nightmare until we found out about door sweeps and that they can actually help a lot with noise reduction, and not only thermal isolation.
And on top of that, they are very easy to install, no matter the type you are using.
How Do You Choose The Best One For Yourself?
We were quite worried at first because the nursery doors were old and wooden, and that we would have to drill too much to attach the sweep.
After searching a bit on the internet, our investigation showed us that drilling it is, by far, overdoing.
No matter if you use a rubber sweep, a spongy one or the one with a brush; these magnificent products are easily adjustable to any type of door.
The sweeps are can be installed in one of the two following ways: by attaching it on the inside of the door or by fitting it on the bottom side with a U-shaped metal adapter.
The idea behind these two types is the same – insulation of the room from any and all of the outside noise, pests or cold. The difference is in the aesthetics.
Another benefit is that these products are sold in many forms and lengths, even long enough that you can fit them on your largest door.
Even if you accidentally buy a longer one, you can cut it right to the size you need.
Since these sweeps can be found in many different shapes and colors, it would be the best to choose the right one smartly so that it doesn’t ruin the aesthetics of your room.
However, if your door is white, the sweep will be easily visible, no matter its color.
There is a possible solution to that problem, though. There are under door seal sweeps that are not visible from a walking viewpoint.
They are arc-shaped and can come with some additional materials. They are perfect for rooms where you usually see a lot of people, like living rooms.
There is just one problem with them: they are likely to fall off if you glue them – so watch out for your choices of materials!
Another problem could be the usage of silicon sweeps on floors with carpets or plastic carpet-like flooring.
In that case, the best solution would be to use a sweep with the brush instead of the silicon one. They won’t stop your doors and still be equally as useful.
How to Install a Door Sweep for Noise Reduction
The U-Shaped Installation
The U-Shaped door sweeps are usually made out of silicon and aluminum, because of their durability.
Silicon is the main insulator there and the aluminum is the carrier for the silicon.
Their shape enables them to just slide onto the door from the door's free side (the one not attached to the wall).
So the first thing you need to do is slide them onto the door so that they completely adhere to the bottom of the door.
The second step is the cutting. You will certainly have a little bit too much on the sides, so you can just use a jab saw, as I did, or a sharp, big, kitchen knife (yes, they can cut through aluminum) and cut off the part that is out of place.
After you successfully tailored your door sweep to the door, you are ready to end the installation with the finishing touch – the third part. The carrier is a little deeper than it is needed for the adhesion.
That is because of the different sizes of the gaps various doors can have between them and the threshold.
So in order to adjust them, you just take a piece of plastic or metal and gently slide it between the U-shaped sweep and the door side, and press down until they touch the floor.
It served absolutely perfectly for our problem with the noisy baby. Besides that, with the help of these door sweeps, we managed to cover up the imperfections.
The sweeps covered up the imperfections from old doors and years of using perfectly well and my husband or I, depending on our turn on the place of a guardian, could sleep peacefully in the night.
The One-Sided Sweeps
These are the sweeps I only ever saw on the internet until one of my friends told me that he was using it.
He has them in his restaurant, on his kitchen double doors. They keep the noise and heat away from the eating lounge and are not too visible from the outside because they are attached to the door on the kitchen side.
That friend of mine used door sweeps with the aluminum backbone that needed to be drilled to the door. The screws usually come with the product, because they depend on the size of the hole on the metal plates.
The main insulator is silicon foam that adheres to the floor perfectly.
Another kind of sweeps is a flexible silicon tape. They are just as good heat insulators as the previous ones, but not as good at noise insulation.
The installment of this kind of sweeps is a bit different from the U-shaped ones, although they are still quite easy to put on your door.
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The first thing to do is to measure the doors and cut them in the same way I explained earlier in the text – with a saw or a very sharp kitchen knife.
The second step is figuring out the height where you need to screw the sweeps. If you put them too high, they will not adhere as good as they should.
If you put them too low, they are going to block the doors which will make them hard to open as the sweeps slide on the floor.
The third and final part requires an electrical screwdriver because nobody wants to hand screw through the door – it would take ages.
If you don't have it, you can try it from your next door neighbor or just buy one of these handy bad boys that you will 100% need if you want to get some work done around the house.
A little tip for the beginners: if you want to position the sweeps or anything else, you might want to label the holes before you fix them.
That way you will have your item nice and aligned with the floor or something else and achieve a professional aesthetic look that DIY housework usually doesn't have.
Other Types of Sweeps and Their Use
When it comes to the invisible sweeps I mentioned before, they are by far the easiest ones to install.
The only thing is you would have to take the doors out of the frames and glue and/or drill them, depending on the model and specifications of the sweep.
The sweeps with the brushy-like bottoms are usually drilled into the doors from one side as I explained in the section above.
But, you can find the U-shaped–like door sweeps, in which case the installation is the same as with the silicon ones – maybe even easier to slide on the flooring.
In both cases, you just need to watch out you don't put them too low for maximum effect on the soundproofing.
On Installing Door Sweeps for Noise Reduction
In the light of everything that I mentioned above, let’s conclude that the way you install a door sweep closely depends on their type.
The U-shaped door sweeps are, in my experience, the most efficient ones to keep the loud noises out if you don’t want to drill your doors.
One-side sweeps are better for tiles on the floors, like those in a kitchen. Both have similar 3-step installments that are very practical and easy for an average homeowner.
When it comes to the ones that need to keep the design of the room untouched, there are invisible yet less durable under door sweeps that are even simpler to put on your door than the other two.
The only thing is they usually require gluing – a solution that is not so permanent.
Therefore, all you have to do is decide, install it, and enjoy the silence.