Steel basement door. Original vinyl weatherstripping fit in a slotted metal track deteriorated after 40 years and no longer works. As you can see daylight shines through which I'm guess means cold & hot air do too.

Daylight when door is closed

I tried this stuff but it was so thick the door would not close & latch properly:

Too thick seal Too thick seal side view

What I ended up with was rubber foam tape that is not very good. This is actually the 2nd time I've applied it as the adhesive wears out over time and the foam just dries out and flakes away (white strip next to dark strip): Not very good foam tape Another view of foam tape

The track the original seal was set in is pretty much non-removable. The screws holding it in strip when I try to take it out.


2 Answers 2


I'd suggest you remove the old and put in some nice new stuff.

To remove the existing screws, first scratch any paint out of them (possibly with a sturdy knife). Then, using the right size slot screwdriver, you'll be able to remove them. (Firm pressure while turning is often what you need. Failing that, tap the back of the screwdriver with a hammer while turning. Failing that, get out the vise grips and just grab the head and twist.)

  • Vice grips are a good suggestion, especially if the screws are disposable. Jul 27, 2016 at 3:11

Looks like your door may have two independent seals (white & black). The black possibly was retrofit but the white may have been original.

If the old worn white seal can be removed, then you may have left a type of "rabbetted" jamb. Something like this:

enter image description here

Replacement seals are available for that type of fitting.

Conservation Technology is one source for seals of this type. Their website also has detailed online descriptions of these seals and related products, materials, and installation techniques that would seem appropriate. I'm sure there are probably other suppliers also.

If a good replacement for the white seal is installed, the black one may no longer be needed (though probably is doing no harm).

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