I have a drafty door and attempted to install a door sweep like this. When I try to drill holes for the screws, nothing happens. I mean, I started with my power drill and a general purpose bit, but it barely made a small divot in the door surface, then the bit broke. I tried getting a nail and hammer and punching through the door, but I didn't even cause it any damage. I tried various other drill bits and self tapping screws, no effect, even after running the drill for several minutes.

Any insight?

I'm not a pro but I've done a good bit of building and diy before and have never not been able to put a hole in something before.

Here is the door, and the attempted screw location. the door all the damage I did with drill, hammer, etc in an hour The drill bits, by request drill bit set I tried for a close up close up

  • Harden steel security door?
    – Tyson
    Commented Dec 15, 2016 at 23:52
  • I wouldn't have thought so, is a fairly cheap residential rental unit. I'll add some pictures.
    – nexus_2006
    Commented Dec 16, 2016 at 0:03
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    Old, dull drill bit, originally manufactured for wood? Commented Dec 16, 2016 at 0:16
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    A picture of your drill bit would help. But start by making sure the drill is in forward (I forget sometimes to check), a new bit, preferred is carbide tip, start a pilot hole with a smaller bit (about a 1/3 size of bit your using). The hole looks like your trying to wear your way through, not actually cutting metal. Commented Dec 16, 2016 at 0:22
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    What metal are your drill bits made out of? Hardened tool steel? or Chinesium pot metal? The holder looks like something from a dollar store. They may only be good for drilling through light woods and dairy products. Cheese-grade. Commented Dec 16, 2016 at 2:21

3 Answers 3


For drilling into steel, use Cobalt drill bits (usually a dark black or gold) have a blunt tip with a "nub" instead of a point.

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    Yes, worked like a charm, my old bits were definitely bad.
    – nexus_2006
    Commented Dec 20, 2016 at 21:07

I think it's definitely your drill bits. I got a special bit for metal when I drilled a gigantic hole in our metal front door to install a viewing port.

While you could install the kind of door sweep you're attempting to install, I'd suggest you go with an alternative. We installed this on the same door recently: http://www.homedepot.com/p/Frost-King-Slide-On-Door-Sweep-Stop-UDB77/203231840 It does not require holes, and as one formed piece that you slap on, you will be less likely to have issues with whether it's on straight, whether the screws or door holes strip, etc.

While it was hard to close/open the door for the first 1.5-2 weeks or so, it eventually broke in and has been working like a charm. Your door-threshold gap looks pretty tight though. Luckily many home improvement stores have generous return policies. We bought several types and screwed around until we decided which was likely to work best.

  • Thank you for the suggestions, but I already had bought the other sweep, and was mostly concerned with the drilling aspect. I'll look for that kind of sweep next time.
    – nexus_2006
    Commented Dec 20, 2016 at 21:09

My first time attempting to drill a 3/32 hole. My drill wouldn't work, wouldn't drill a small hole in my wooden double door. I discovered I hadn't turned the red knob on the drill to the right. It was drilling the wrong way. I found this site to try and figure out why the hole wasn't working. It is interesting reading all your comments. Who knew? lol

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