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How to apply exterior caulking

Proper exterior caulking around your home seals out moisture and outside air while reducing energy costs and preventing costly repairs. It will also help keep out insects and small creatures seeking food, shelter and warmth.  With some basic tools, supplies and a little work, your windows will be airtight and ready for the season.

ct howto 2016 Tools Apply Exterior Caulking ct howto 2016 Tools Apply Exterior Caulking

STEP 1

Check for drafts.

Check to see if any air flows through your closed windows. Also look at the caulk on the outside of the window. If there are visible gaps and cracks, it's time to re-caulk.

How to apply exterior caulking Step 1 How to apply exterior caulking Step 1

STEP 2

Remove old caulking.

Be careful not to damage the door or window frame.

How to apply exterior caulking Step 2 How to apply exterior caulking Step 2

STEP 3

Cut the nozzle.

Although this seems trivial, the proper cut will have significant impact on how thick and wide your caulk will be applied.

How to apply exterior caulking Step 3 How to apply exterior caulking Step 3

STEP 4

Puncture the seal at the bottom of the nozzle using the caulking gun.

How to apply exterior caulking Step 4 How to apply exterior caulking Step 4

STEP 5

Insert tube of caulking in applicator.

...and you are ready to go.

How to apply exterior caulking Step 5 How to apply exterior caulking Step 5

STEP 6

Apply new caulking.

Use a step ladder if needed.

How to apply exterior caulking Step 6 How to apply exterior caulking Step 6

STEP 7

Use your finger to add a finishing touch.

To get a really smooth finish, wet your finger and drag it along the bead of caulking compound.

How to apply exterior caulking Step 7 How to apply exterior caulking Step 7

STEP 8

Clean up around the window or door with a wet rag.

How to apply exterior caulking Step 8 How to apply exterior caulking Step 8

STEP 9

Wipe the nozzle of the caulking tube and replace the cap.

STEP 10

Final tip!

If you're using paintable caulk, let the compound set for the recommended drying time before painting.