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Question DetailsAsked on 2/11/2018

Is there a special door that you can purchase to place upstairs where it leads out to the attic-possibly insulated?

I have one of those doors that leads out directly into our attic upstairs. I have tried for years to find a door that is insulated to SOMETHING to block the heat in the summer and cold in the winter. It's my son's bedroom. Can anyone tell me if you know of anything that can be done to replace this regular door and to block this door??

Thank you for your help!

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1 Answer


Check if the problem is the door itself, or air getting around the frame - may be, if airflow around the frame, you just need to pull the trim (or it may not even have any) and use the round foam cord insulation (come in different diameters for different size gaps) pushed in between the doorframe and rough framing to block airflow. Non-expanding foam-in-a-can also works but messier and more expensive.

If the door itself is the issue, this is one of the few places where I would recommend a insulated fiberglass exterior door. If utilities are in the attic (furnace, water heate, A/C, etc then for fire safety and rating I would use an insulated steel door. Commonly about $500-600 installed, assuming what is there now is a standard sized rough opening.

For that location, a Handyman could probably handle the job - or if at all home handy, with a bit of help from the internet like Youtube or instruction videos from Home Depot or Lowes or door manufacturer, you might install it yourself. Prehung door (frame and door alreayd assembled, ready for installation except for swapping doorknob, itself is typically, for economy door, around $250 plus or minus about $50, from a box store.

Another option you could try cheaply to see if it works - seal around the frame per above, then (assuming this is rarely used) staple 4-6 inches of fiberglass insulation batting on the attic side of the door. Overlap seriously on the hinge side, trim other 3 sides so it does not snag when door is opened. (I said 4-8 inches - more, like 18-24", would be better, but without some sort of frame around it will not stay in place when door is opened). Box stores commonly sell small quantities of fiberglass insulation batting - as small as 25LF in 16 or 24 inch widths.

Foam board insulation glued or nailed to it is generally easier to apply but against fire code in most areas, and probably in all areas if any appliances like HVAC mentioned before are in the attic.

Another quick and dirty solution - hang one or two heavy blankets or quilts over the doorway on the inside (or if door opens inward, off the top of the door itself). That assuming this is not a required emergency egress from the room. If room has a door into the house and an exterior window for emergency escape, then hanging blankets or quilts over the door should be OK - if you don't have any, lots cheap at thrift stores - get ones a good bit wider than the opening if possible which will reach to and overlap on the floor for a better airtight seal. Secure at top with a wood strip with screws through it and the blankets into studs or door rough opening. Be sure there is an airgap between blanket/quilt and the door if it gets below maybe 15 degrees or so in your area, otherwise condensation may form on the door and cause mildew/mold in the blanket.

Answered 2 years ago by LCD

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