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My retractable door seal leaves a gap in the middle.

My retractable door seal leaves a gap in the middle.

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  #1  
Old 03-03-13, 11:43 AM
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My retractable door seal leaves a gap in the middle.

So I bought this automatic retractable door seal (Wind-Ex by Athmer) for my wooden front door in order to effectively prevent insects from getting in. For anyone who might be unaware of these, they use a button mechanism at the hinge side of the door frame allowing a retractable rubber seal to lower and block any opening while you close the door.
Here’s a link showing it in action: Absenkdichtung gegen Zugluft, Windex zum Aufschrauben für den Innen und Aussenbereich - YouTube

I’d try to install it myself but I wanted to make perfectly sure I wouldn’t screw up while cutting it to fit my door and applying it. So I hired a professional but unfortunately things didn’t end up well. The rubber door seal merely touches the floor during the 2/3 of the length of the opening underneath my door, leaving an 1/3 gap in the middle. The guy said that it wasn’t his fault and that my floor seems to be uneven that’s why we got this result. I am not sure whether this is true but without being a specialist myself, I guess he is right since the door seal closes pretty firmly on both opposite sides of the door so that should be an uneven floor case rather a mistake on his part, right?
To make things worse, the gap in the middle is uneven itself. Something less than around 8 mm in the center, progressively fading out while approaching each side where the rubber seals the opening firmly. That would be a rough sketch of how it looks like:

My floor is made of marble by the way. Please tell me there is a way to fix this (somehow have the floor level rise so the rubber firmly presses against it, effectively sealing the gap in the middle too as it is supposed to) because it is completely devastating to see all the money to buy the door seal and pay the technician going to the trash bin without having the job done. Thanks in advance.
 
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  #2  
Old 03-03-13, 01:20 PM
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Welcome to the forums! The unevenness of the floor is most likely the fault of the lay of the tile rather than the installation of the seal. Is there an adjustment on the seal? Lay a level across the opening and see if the floor dips. If so, the only thing you can do is remove the tile and relay new tile and make it level. A lot of work and may be impossible due to the marble not being available for replacement.

It looked to be a straight forward installation, but I don't speak German, so I didn't understand the narrative.
 
  #3  
Old 03-03-13, 02:35 PM
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Thanks for the reply and the welcome.

Is there an adjustment on the seal?
There is. You can adjust the length of the button which results in higher/lower pressure = rubber extending lower, having a tighter seal. By doing that, the gap gets smaller with the far sides "disappearing" but there still a significant opening in the very middle. But even if that would result in the gap disappearing I guess it wouldn't help since the rubber on the knob side gets REALLY tight then and the door simply won't open, not to mention that the rubber would get damaged fast.

Lay a level across the opening and see if the floor dips.
To be honest I am not sure what you mean about that. In any case I don't think removing a tile could be an option, especially since as you put it, it's unlikely to fix things even if I do that.

It looked to be a straight forward installation, but I don't speak German
I don't speak german either, that was the only video I could find to help people understand what this door seal is all about. Pretty forward installation indeed, yet because I didn't have the tool to cut it and because I wanted to be sure that I would get a good result I hired a technician. So as you can imagine I am pretty disappointed now.

What I've been trying to do is to set up a "patchwork" level made of foam tape and regular tape hoping to make the rubber reach it. It didn't really work, it's not easy to even properly align it right underneath the rubber. At some point I thought I managed to do it, it appeared to be too thick and the new resistance caused the rubber on the knob side to get lifted now (!) creating a new gap.

Another idea that crossed my mind was to maybe find a product like this:
http://www.dap.com/images/products/59184.jpg
to dunno, "level" the floor in the middle? I don't know how these things work. But even if there is a product like that god knows how I could level it seeing the gap itself is uneven.

Then, what else? Rubbing the rest of the floor with sandpaper hoping to equalize it with the gap in the middle and reattach Windex? I don't even know if sandpaper would work on marble.

Dunno, I am bit lost I guess...
 
  #4  
Old 03-03-13, 02:41 PM
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Regarding the level across the door opening. A level is a bubble device to detect plumb and level lines. Laid across the door opening would tell you where and by how much the floor is out of level. If you have a dip or rise in the tile, you don't have much alternative. Don't use the flooring leveler. It is meant to be put down prior to tile jobs to level the floor. Such as what "should" have happened prior to your tile being put down.

You don't really need a level. Any straight edge would do. How about a yardstick? Lay it across the opening and snap a picture for us to see. http://www.doityourself.com/forum/el...your-post.html
 
  #5  
Old 03-03-13, 06:03 PM
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.


What is the seal material? (the part that actually drops down against the floor)....is it solid rubber?

If so.......you may be able to sand or carefully cut a gradual taper from the center out towards each end. Basically you would scribe the sealing edge to match the contour of the floor. If you remove the unit it would allow you to work on it as described and you may be able to easily accomplish this.


.
 
  #6  
Old 03-08-13, 04:22 PM
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Do you have a threshold on the door that sticks up higher than the finished floor?
 
  #7  
Old 03-10-13, 11:31 AM
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chandler
If you have a dip or rise in the tile, you don't have much alternative.
You don't really need a level. Any straight edge would do. How about a yardstick? Lay it across the opening and snap a picture for us to see.
I didn't get the chance to effectively do that yet. But it seems you suggest that if the floor is uneven indeed I can't do anything about it which doesn't leave much room for hope.

Halton
What is the seal material? (the part that actually drops down against the floor)....is it solid rubber?
If so.......you may be able to sand or carefully cut a gradual taper from the center out towards each end. Basically you would scribe the sealing edge to match the contour of the floor. If you remove the unit it would allow you to work on it as described and you may be able to easily accomplish this.
Even if I could somehow be robotically precise and cut the rubber exactly where is needed (which is not possible because I can't possibly know how much rubber is extra/lacking in each and every mm), I would simply destroy the whole thing because there are 3 needle-like edges at the bottom of the rubber that serve the exact purpose of sealing.

chip wolff
Do you have a threshold on the door that sticks up higher than the finished floor?
No, it's just the floor.
 
  #8  
Old 03-10-13, 08:43 PM
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Originally Posted by chip wolff
Do you have a threshold on the door that sticks up higher than the finished floor?
No, it's just the floor.
It sounds like adding an adjustable threshold, caulked underneath, might solve your problem. You might have to trim a little off the bottom of the door to clear the threshold and to provide a space to attach the new weatherstrip.
 
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