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How to Prevent Water Coming In Under the Garage Door

If you find that your garage accumulates puddles every time it rains, it’s a clear sign that adjustments are necessary for your garage door. Identifying the problem is the first step toward resolving the issue, but sometimes knowing the issue alone isn’t enough to fix it without professional help.

If you notice water coming in under garage door, here’s what you need to determine:

  1. Assess the Slope of Your Driveway: Begin by examining the gradient of your driveway. A proper slope away from the garage helps prevent water from flowing towards the garage door. If the slope directs water towards the garage, this could be the primary cause of your problem.
  2. Check the Fit of the Garage Door: Inspect how well your garage door seals when closed. Look for any gaps at the bottom or sides where water can seep through. Over time, garage doors can settle or become misaligned, which might cause gaps to appear.
  3. Identify Water Entry Points: Observe exactly where the water enters your garage and how it accumulates or “ponds” on the floor. This can help you pinpoint specific areas that need attention, such as the need for better sealing or drainage.
  4. Determine the Solution: Based on your findings, the next steps might vary:
    • Adjust the Door: If the door itself is the issue, adjusting its alignment or replacing the weather stripping might resolve the problem.
    • Improve Drainage: If driveway slope or poor drainage is the culprit, consider regrading the driveway or installing drainage solutions like a trench drain across the entrance of the garage.
    • Seek Professional Help: Sometimes, the adjustments required might be beyond typical DIY skills, particularly if it involves significant changes to the driveway or garage structure. In such cases, it’s wise to consult with a professional.

Once you know the real problem, you can easily determine what the next step should be.

A Surface Threshold

Installing a surface threshold, particularly a rubber strip, is a straightforward and effective method to prevent water from seeping under a garage door during rainstorms or when snow melts. If your driveway slopes even slightly towards your home, this can cause water to collect and seep under the door, leading to puddles in your garage. Here’s how a rubber threshold can help and how to install one as a DIY project:

  1. Purpose of a Rubber Threshold: A rubber threshold acts as a barrier that blocks the gap under the garage door. It’s a simple yet effective solution to keep the interior of your garage dry by preventing water from entering. This barrier works especially well if the water issue is not severe but still a nuisance during heavy rain or snow.
  2. Choosing the Right Threshold: Select a threshold that is durable and designed for garage doors. These thresholds are typically made from a heavy-duty rubber material that can withstand the wear and tear of vehicles driving over it and resist weather-related degradation.
  3. Installation Process:
    • Clean the Area: Start by thoroughly cleaning the concrete where the threshold will be placed. Remove any dirt, debris, or grease to ensure that the adhesive bonds well.
    • Measure and Cut: Measure the width of your garage door and cut the rubber threshold to fit. Most rubber thresholds can be cut with a utility knife.
    • Apply Heavy-Duty Adhesive: Use a heavy-duty adhesive designed for outdoor use and rubber materials. Apply the adhesive evenly across the bottom of the threshold.
    • Position the Threshold: Carefully place the rubber strip directly under the garage door, ensuring it is centered and straight.
    • Secure and Seal: Close the garage door onto the threshold to press it into place. Allow the adhesive to cure as per the manufacturer’s instructions, usually for 24 hours, to ensure a strong bond.
  4. Benefits of a Rubber Threshold:
    • Effective Water Barrier: Provides a significant reduction in water seepage, keeping your garage dry.
    • Cost-Effective: Generally inexpensive, especially compared to more extensive modifications like regrading the driveway.
    • Easy to Install: Suitable for DIY installation, requiring minimal tools and technical skill.

Adding a rubber threshold is a quick, cost-effective, and reliable solution to keep your garage dry, making it an excellent option for homeowners looking to handle minor water intrusion issues on their own.

Check the Door Seals

Ensuring that your garage door seals are in good condition is essential for keeping water and wind out of your garage under normal weather conditions. Over time, the alignment of the door can shift, or the weatherstripping can become damaged, which compromises the effectiveness of these seals. Here’s a detailed guide on how to check and maintain your garage door seals:

  1. Understanding Garage Door Seals:
    • Top, Bottom, and Side Seals: Garage doors are equipped with seals along the top, bottom, and sides. These seals are designed to block out water, wind, and even pests.
    • Material and Function: The seals typically consist of rubber or vinyl weatherstripping that compresses when the door is closed, creating a tight seal against the elements.
  2. Inspecting the Seals:
    • Visual Inspection: Begin by visually inspecting the seals around the perimeter of your garage door. Look for signs of wear such as rips, tears, or damage.
    • Light Check: Close the garage door and check for light leaking through any gaps around the door. Visible light is a clear indicator that the seal isn’t complete.
    • Check for Damage: Pay particular attention to any areas where you can see light or feel drafts. These are likely spots where the weatherstripping is failing.
  3. Identifying Common Issues:
    • Drying and Cracking: Over time, weatherstripping can dry out and crack, especially in areas with extreme weather conditions. Check for brittleness and cracks that can impair the seal’s effectiveness.
    • Crimps and Bends: Weatherstripping that has been crimped or bent out of shape can fail to provide a proper seal. This often occurs after accidental bumps or adjustments to the door.
  4. Maintenance and Replacement:
    • Cleaning: Regularly clean the seals with mild soap and water to remove debris that could prevent a tight seal.
    • Realigning the Door: If the door is misaligned, it may require adjustment to ensure that the seals can function correctly.
    • Replacing Weatherstripping: If the damage is significant, replacing the weatherstripping is necessary. Most home improvement stores sell garage door seal kits, and replacement is usually a straightforward DIY task.
    • Professional Help: If you’re unsure about how to replace the seals or realign the door, consider hiring a professional. They can provide a thorough inspection and ensure that your garage door is properly sealed.
  5. Understanding Lifespan:
    • Variability: The lifespan of garage door weatherstripping varies depending on material quality, exposure to elements, and frequency of use. Regularly checking and maintaining these seals can help extend their life.

By regularly checking and maintaining your garage door’s seals, you can ensure that your garage remains dry and protected from the elements. This routine maintenance not only helps in weatherproofing but also enhances the overall functionality and lifespan of your garage door.

Consider a Trench Drain

For more serious water problems, an exterior trench drain might be necessary, and is often the best solution for homes with flat driveways. A trench is dug the entire width of the driveway and covered with a surface grate.

The drain prevents exterior ponding, allowing rain and melting snow to drain directly into the dirt below. Ideally, such drains are installed when a home is first built, or in conjunction with a home renovation.

Schedule an Annual Checkup

An annual garage door inspection is a good idea to ensure continued peak performance. Your automatic garage door and opener have many moving parts. Although modern garage doors are designed for performance, they benefit from occasional maintenance.

Overhead Door Company of Oklahoma City has been serving area customers since 1965, and our services include not only installation and replacement, but also repairs and adjustments. By scheduling a routine checkup, homeowners can eliminate most existing problems and look forward to years of trouble-free operation.

If you’d like more information about our services, or if you’re stymied by recurring water ponding in your home’s garage, call on our experts to help identify the problem and mitigate any damage.


FAQs

Why does my garage accumulate puddles when it rains?

Water accumulation in your garage when it rains is typically due to improper driveway slope directing water towards the garage or insufficient sealing of the garage door.

What should I check if water is entering my garage?

Assess the slope of your driveway, check the fit of your garage door for any gaps, and identify specific water entry points to determine the best solution.

How can adjusting the garage door help with water leaks?

Adjusting the alignment of the garage door or replacing the weather stripping can help seal gaps where water is seeping through.

What is the purpose of a rubber threshold for a garage door?

A rubber threshold acts as a barrier to block the gap under the garage door, effectively preventing water from entering and keeping your garage dry.

How do you install a rubber threshold for a garage door?

Clean the concrete area, measure and cut the threshold to fit, apply a heavy-duty adhesive, position the threshold under the door, and then secure it in place to ensure a strong bond.

Why is it important to check the seals on my garage door?

Checking the seals helps ensure that they are intact and effective at keeping out water, wind, and pests, thus maintaining the dryness and security of your garage.

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Kristen Mangum
Kristen Mangum
2022-12-21
Friendly customer service. Bought a hard to find remote for an old garage door opener. Opener has 3 buttons so I can program both doors to it. Easy to find location right off 29th St.
Robert Ballinger
Robert Ballinger
2022-12-12
Great people
Betsy Chronister
Betsy Chronister
2022-09-13
I was given a very fair quote. A week later a tech came and installed. Then came back to install lock. Tech was very professional and polite. Spen time with me making adjustments to my liking. I totally recommend Overhead door to my fellow Okies.
Hendrix Morrow
Hendrix Morrow
2022-06-29
Overhead Door did a great job. They got me on the schedule the next day and fixed my spring in 30 minutes or less. Joe was great, professional, and courteous. Awesome service, and he didn't tell me I needed extra materials like the previous garage door people that quoted me $575. Overhead Door told me a price over the phone and it didn't change. I'd recommend them every time.
Sandy Molleda Molleda
Sandy Molleda Molleda
2022-03-22
A very good place for a new garage door and a new remote.
John Ehrhardt
John Ehrhardt
2022-01-28
Pleased with their services. Coil spring broke and door stopped working. Spoke to Ron, and less than 24 hrs later the technician had us up n running again. These guys did exactly what they promised to do, with no nonsense. I like that.

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