How to Effectively Protect Door Thresholds During Construction Projects

During construction or remodeling projects, door thresholds are often destroyed by dirt, mud, paint splatter, and careless spills. In order to avoid replacing or refinishing thresholds, it is recommended that contractors use temporary threshold protection. Following is a brief description of the pros and cons of each type of threshold protection.

UV protective tape is the best kind of adhesive threshold protection. It is a 9 mil. thick white tape that does not flake, even if exposed to bright sunlight. UV protective tape has chemicals in both the tape and adhesive that block UV rays and make the tape resistant to both sunlight and heat. It can be used in both hot and cold climates without the worry of adhesive transfer resulting in a quick and clean removal upon project completion. Although more expensive than other tapes, UV protective tape is very cost effective when the costs of clean up or repainting of entry thresholds are considered.

Blue masking tape and blue sill tapes are the most common tapes for protecting thresholds. These low cost tapes work for short term protection only in areas of low heat or sunlight. They are known to flake and chip when exposed to sunlight and are often cited for creating more work than the protection provided. These low quality 2 or 3 mil. tapes often leave a sticky adhesive residue on thresholds as the adhesive used in the tapes softens in warm temperatures.

Another option is to use fitted threshold protection made from molded plastic. The molded plastic threshold protectors are designed to protect the most common types of thresholds in residential or commercial construction. They are the most durable type of threshold protection and can be used for multiple projects. Several sill manufacturers provide plastic threshold protection that is specific to the model of sill they are selling. Unfortunately, heavy duty plastic protectors are not available for every type of entry threshold so the protection is not easy to obtain. There is one surface protection company on the west coast that does inventory plastic threshold protection for two of the most common sill profiles.

For protecting sliding door tracks, there are two types of threshold protection. The first is a hinged plastic protection that flips over the tracks of sliding doors to keep them clean from debris. This protection screws into a wood subflooring to hold it in place and thus cannot be used on sliding doors installed over cement slabs which are commonly used on the west coast. Another option that does work for protecting sliding doors installed on cement slabs is impact-resistant U-board protection. It is a thick, heavy weight compressed paper protection that is made from recycled material and is completely reusable. The U-board is placed over the tracks while the door is open and protects sliding door tracks from dirt and grime. As with the plastic protector, the Sill Pro keeps the sliding tracks clean and protects the tracks of the door from damage that can interfere with the working operations of the door.

Contact your local surface protection supplier to learn more about the different types of threshold protection available and which is best for your construction or remodeling project.

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