Creaking door seals are harmless, but one of the most annoying defects. It does not affect the functionality of the car, but reduces its comfort. In some cases, the squeaking of rubber seals can distract the driver, which has a negative impact on road safety. In this article on Auto without a service station, I will talk about the causes of squeaking and simple ways to eliminate it.
Why do seals squeak?
The most common reason for squeaking car door seals is deterioration in the elasticity of the rubber. Happens after several years of use. If the car is often washed using aggressive chemicals, or is constantly exposed to direct sunlight or frost, the material loses its elasticity much faster.
The next common cause of squeaking door seals is improper installation of the door in the closed position. In many cases, the door sags due to its own weight. Such defects can occur after minor accidents, as a result of which body parts lose their original geometry.
The rubber seals often begin to creak after a professional wash. In some cases, the defect can appear even on relatively new cars. Here, the cause of the squeaking is detergents that make the seal material smooth and hard. As a result, when driving, the rubber rubs against the metal of the body, causing an unpleasant sound.
Before you try to eliminate the creaking rubber seal of a car door using one of the methods described below, you need to make sure that it is the rubber that is creaking. In fact, there are many places in a car where squeaking can occur. For example, plastic interior parts, silent blocks, shock absorber struts, worn brake pads.
How to recognize the creaking of rubber seals? If the creaking occurs at low speed, then it is enough to slightly open the “suspicious” door. If the sound disappears, then its source is the rubber seals.
How to eliminate squeaking door seals?
I suggest eliminating creaking door seals in one of three ways:
- Replacement of seals with new ones.
- Adjusting the door position.
- Treating rubber with silicone grease.
Now more details.
This method should be used if you are sure that the existing seal is unsuitable for further use. To test the material, press it with your finger. If a dent forms at the point of pressure and the rubber does not return to its original form, it has lost its elasticity.
If it does not deform when pressed, then the material has “hardened”, and this may also be the cause of the squeak.
Pay attention to doorways after washing your car or after driving in heavy rain. If water has leaked into the interior in places, this means that the seals are not working.
Inspect the seal in a well-lit area. If you see microscopic cracks, it is recommended to replace the seal with a new one.
Replacing door seals on relatively new cars does not cause problems. Such spare parts can be easily found, for example, from official dealers or in specialized online stores. With cars of the “last century” the situation is worse. New parts cannot be found. It's difficult to find something similar.
Correct door position
How to determine that a squeak is caused by an incorrect door position? When driving at low speed, grab the door handle and forcefully pull the door towards you, pressing it against the car body. If the squeak disappears, the door is not adjusted correctly. Perhaps it sank due to time or an accident.
You can also visually check to see if the door is warped. If uneven gaps are visible along the contour, this means that the door is not adjusted correctly. Misalignment can be determined by the way the door opens and closes. These operations must be performed without the use of force.
Adjusting a car door with your own hands is quite difficult. This requires the right technique and some experience. Additionally, not all vehicles have adjustable hinges.
Lubricating seals with silicone grease
This is the simplest and most effective way. Silicone oil is sold today as a spray, aerosol or liquid. This composition has the remarkable property of eliminating the creaking of door seals, so it is recommended to use it.
Silicone grease not only eliminates squeaking. It also partially restores the elasticity of rubber, prevents doors from freezing in winter, and improves the appearance of parts.
A liberal application of this lubricant is sufficient to eliminate squeaking of the seals. The disadvantage of this method is that after cleaning with a strong detergent, the silicone is washed off from the surface of the rubber and the squeaking periodically appears again. Therefore, although this method of “treatment” is quite effective, it must be repeated regularly.
There are several ways to eliminate noise from door seals. Which one to use depends on the reason. If, as a result of a minor accident, the door has lost its shape, then it is foolish to apply silicone grease to the rubber seal. It is also ineffective if the seal is severely cracked, torn, or becomes too light. If the seals are in good condition, an unpleasant squeak can be eliminated with your own hands in a few minutes.