Anita's quilts and quilting

A professional longarm machine quilter for hire and some of the work I've done.

Door snakes

I’ve made myself some door snakes for the doors inside my house.  Some people call these draft dodgers.  Grandma Mama had door snakes made from burlap bags and filled with dried beans.  It was such a bother to pick them up and replace them each time a door was opened.

I saw these things on tv a couple of years ago.  It’s an updated version of the old door snakes.  Being the thrifty me, I decided they were easy to make myself instead of buying them.  I bought the materials, set it aside, and forgot all about it.  When cleaning out stuff the last few days, I came across it again.  Well, I decided it’s finally time to make those snakes.  Here’s what I did.

My doors are 31 1/2″ wide X 1 1/2″ thick.  I allowed 1/2″ for the door jam where it meets the door which means my door snakes should finish at 31 inches.  I cut a piece of scrap fabric for each door.

Scrap fabriI cut a piece of fabric 12 1/2″ X 32″ for each interior door.

I sewed a small hem on each end then folded in half lengthwise.  The hem is not doubled.  It won’t show when these are done. Unless, of course, you have someone who will get down on the floor to inspect your work.

Ends hemmed, folded in half

I pressed it with the pretty side out then sewed a seam down the edge side to make it a tube.

Sewn into a tube

I re-pressed it with the new sewn seam going down the center.

Centered seam

I marked a line five inches from each side.  You can see it next to the sewn seam.  I sewed on those lines.  The part in between the sewn lines is the part that goes under the door.

Sewing line marked

The sections  on the sides of the sewn seams are where the foam pipe insulation tubes go.

Pipe insulation

This photo shows the pipe insulation put into the tube.  Time to try it out on a door.

Door snakes finished

See.  It fits!

Door snakes in place

The thickness of the door pushed out the slack of the sides to make them real snug against the door.

Moves with the door

This is how it looks on the other side of the door when it’s closed.  Ooo… perfect.

Perfect fit

What’s really neat about these door snakes is that they are washable.  I can remove to wash and put back in place.   Hmm…. How’s that for a fabric stash busting idea?

You may be wondering why I want door snakes on interior doors?  It’s to stop airflow under the door from a heated room into an unheated room.  Heat moves to the cold.  I can’t shut off the vents to the rooms because my furnace would be damaged.  But, I can turn down the heat to a low setting and use a space heater to heat only the room I’m actually in.  For example at night.  I don’t need to heat the studio or the kitchen when I’m not in there.  I have a really small space heater for each room.  The energy used by a small ceramic space heater in one room is far less than using a big furnace to heat the whole house.  Make sense now?

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4 comments on “Door snakes

  1. Joyful
    September 13, 2011

    That’s a great idea! I’ve never seen these before. I’ve been meaning to buy some weather proofing for the bottom of the door or a rubber flap but I may instead look at what you’ve done and do it myself. Only problem is finding places here that sell materials to use (like those foamie pices you used).

    • Na Na
      September 13, 2011

      The foam things are water pipe insulation that can be bought at most any hardware store. They are used to cover water pipes that go through unheated spaces under a house. It helps keep the pipes from freezing in cold weather and also keeps the hot water from loosing heat in it’s travel from the water heater to the faucet. It comes with a slit along the length. You slip it over the pipe, pull the paper from the glue, and it closes up the slit. It’s cut with scissors or a sharp kitchen knife.

      These double snakes only work on interior doors. Outside doors can’t use double snakes because of the door “threshold” on the outside. On my doors I couldn’t get the rubber flap things to “stay” on my doors. They kept coming loose. I’m working on an idea for the outside doors. I need to make a trip to the hardware store first. What I need is something that works, is cheap and easy to make, is easy to keep clean, and doesn’t need replacing every few weeks.

  2. kathi
    September 11, 2011

    THAT is simply AWESOME!!!! hm, i’m already thinking WHAT DOORS i NEED them for. and ok. heah. CHRISTMAS is coming. WHO do i KNOW that would APPRECIATE these?
    I’m LOVING it!!!!

    • Na Na
      September 12, 2011

      I hadn’t thought about making these for Christmas gifts. Hmm….. I know a couple of people that would love them too. Thanks!

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