How to Replace a Door Saddle

Lead Image
  • 2-4 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 100-200
What You'll Need
Measuring tape
New door saddle
Wood sealer
Metal saw

A door saddle is recommended for improving the overall durability and insulation properties of a door. Door saddles are sturdy materials and tend to last for many years before needing a replacement. They are specifically manufactured to endure daily wear and tear and need a moderate amount of maintenance. Door saddles are also called door bottoms. However, unlike the conventional door thresholds, or weathering stripping, door saddles are located only along the undersurface of the door. In this way, they protect the bottom of the door from daily scuffing induced by foot traffic and maintenance issues, such as moisture and chemical vapors from household cleaners.

Getting Started

A door saddle should be cut to exact measurements. The slightest of overhang can disrupt the function of the door. Measure the distance between the bottom of the door and the underlying floor. Use a measuring tape for this. Also, measure the width of the door. The new door saddle strip has to be cut using these measurements. Be sure to take three measurements before you cut.

Preparing Door Saddle Installation Surface

Remove the old door saddle strip with care. They are often installed using deeply-hammered nails. Check for any wooden staples that might be securing the door saddle. Remove the nails using a screwdriver. The nails can be removed with a hammer. If there are screws holding the worn-out door saddle, this becomes easy.

Some older door saddles were retailed with a thick rubber lining. In hot climates, the rubber is subjected to a bit of melting. Thus, you are likely to find rubber bits stuck to the door’s undersurface. Use a chisel to scrape off the rubber residues from the installation surface.

Removing the older door saddle strip carefully is important so be careful to use precise guides to check your measurements. However, you can also be stuck with an aged door saddle that may not respond to either of these methods. Pry the old strip and then saw off some of the door’s bottom to create a new surface.

Purchasing a New Door Saddle Strip

Be careful when you purchase the new door saddle. They are sold in home improvement stores in standard measurements. Most door saddle strips are sold within the 36 to 72 inches range. The 48-inch saddle strip is very common. Ensure that you buy a door saddle that is a few inches larger than your measurements to protect against damage during installation.

Installing & Securing New Door Saddle

Wooden door saddles will need to be protected against warping and rotting. Finish the surface of the door saddle with a wood sealer. Then, secure the door saddle with corrosion-resistant nails. Start by nailing one end of the door saddle strip. Then, unroll the strip along the underside of the door. Hammer the nails at an equal distance, maintaining a distance of at least 1 inch between them. Cut-off the remaining saddle strip when you reach the opposite edge of the door. Secure the nails with caulk or putty.