Repairing and Maintaining Car Door Weather Stripping

Updated: Oct. 23, 2023

Prevent frozen car doors and torn weather stripping

FH07MAY_WEASTR_01-2 automotive weather strippingFamily Handyman
Repair torn weather stripping on car doors quickly and easily, and treat it with silicone spray to prevent winter freeze-up and further weather stripping damage.

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Repair and maintain car door weather stripping

Photo 1: Repair automotive weather stripping

Apply adhesive to the back of the weather strip and the channel.

Photo 2: Automotive weather stripping maintenance

Prevent door sticking with silicone spray. Move in close to cut down on overspray and create a better seal.

During the winter, water can freeze around the door’s rubber weather strip, locking you out of your car. If you pull hard to break the ice, the weather stripping can tear right off the car door. Here’s how to fix the car weather stripping and prevent it from tearing again.

Buy a tube of weather-strip adhesive, a can of nonflammable spray brake cleaner and a can of spray silicone (all are available at any auto parts store). Then pull the weather strip away from the door and clean it and the metal surface with the brake cleaner. Let that dry completely, then squeeze a bead of the adhesive onto the weather strip and the car door and let that dry. Then apply a second coat to both surfaces and press the weather strip into place. Clean up any adhesive messes with the brake cleaner.

Hold it in place with masking tape until the adhesive dries (about 45 minutes). Then pull the tape free and spray silicone on the weather strip on the other doors and trunk lid. That will prevent ice from sticking to them. It’s good preventive maintenance to treat the rubber weather stripping before winter every year. Next, learn about car trim molding.

Required Materials for this Project

Avoid last-minute shopping trips by having all your materials ready ahead of time. Here’s a list.

  • Brake cleaner (spray can)
  • Masking tape
  • Plastic gloves
  • Spray silicone
  • Weather-strip adhesive