If we were to think of the important features that characterise a well-built home, our mind would instantly jump to things like a stable roof, double glazed windows, open plan spacious setting and plenty of natural light. However, other small features, like skirting boards and architraves, that we may not initially think of, are also as important to the functioning of our home’s structure. One of these is door thresholds - an energy-efficient part of our home that we may not always think about or notice throughout our day to day life. Yet, they are in fact, a key part of the home and we use them every day without even realising.
As a leading wooden moulding company, we decided to write the ultimate guide to door thresholds, to enlighten you with plenty of knowledge as to what they are, their history and why they are an efficient addition to your home.
What Are Door Thresholds?
Simply put, the door threshold is a strip of wood or metal that runs across the bottom of a door frame that moulds into your carpet or wooden flooring, allowing for seamless and easy thoroughfare as well as the opening and closing of your door. Also known colloquially as carpet door bars or carpet door strips, door thresholds can be applied on a variety of surfaces and entryways of both interiors and exteriors.
Though this may not initially seem important, this additional feature or embellishment is actually very practical and handy. They can, for instance, improve your home’s energy efficiency, safety and weather-resistant properties.
Like many architectural features, door thresholds have a varied history and many symbolic attachments, that make us rethink this supposedly modest feature. We look at this in further detail below.
It is believed that the word ‘threshold’ originated from two meanings and translations dating back to Old English and the 17th century. The original Old English term was ‘therscold’ or ‘threscold’ which meant the noisily stamping of feet - which is what we do before entering our home, especially if our shoes are tainted with mud, grass, or snow.
The 17th-century meaning comes from a practice where people used to lay reeds or rushes across an entrance, which were known as ‘threshes’ in this time. This had a utilitarian purpose as it prevented slipping, falls and other accidents. What’s more, linking to the other definition above, ‘thresh’ is also a modern word used in agriculture that means separating grain from husks. This practise is now used by modern agriculture machinery, yet the earliest method of threshing was by people stomping on the grains to separate the wheat grains.
Now, we can easily see why our modern term threshold has originated from this as it is a slip of wood that equally protects us and our home. We have the polite practice of stomping our feet to rid of dirt before entering.
The entering and exit of a home actually have plenty of symbolism and rites attached - and it isn’t surprising that thresholds have a part to play in this. Generally speaking, thresholds are a place of passage, where the outside world and inside world meet. This is why crossing the threshold is associated with rebirth and leaving the past behind.
With this in mind, there are various superstitions and rituals that have arisen because of this. For example, in Poland, Ukraine and Russia, it is considered bad luck to shake hands or kiss across the threshold when meeting someone. What’s more, in many other countries around the world, it is considered good luck for a bridegroom to carry the bride over the threshold into their new home as this symbolises them entering their new life together.
Now that we understand more about why door thresholds are called thresholds, we will take a closer look as to why they are an efficient and popular addition to your home.
It is no secret that we all need to do our bit for the environment, whether that is purchasing less single-use plastic, having an efficient recycling regime, or using the central heating less in the winter. There are a myriad of home improvements as well as individual steps that can reduce your carbon footprint. One of these home improvements is having or maintaining good energy efficiency throughout your home. This can be done by installing double glazed windows, adding thick curtains, or insulating your loft and walls. Another thing that you can do is adding door thresholds or replacing door thresholds if you notice any are broken or worn.
Door thresholds act as an interior air seal, protecting hot air from leaving your home, and consequently, cooler air coming in. This means that they add insulative properties to your home, making your home more energy-efficient, warmer in the winter, and not at the helm of constant increasing heating bills.
We all are familiar with the wet, windy and often grey British weather. Yet, we are also prone to the odd heatwave, no matter how surprising it may seem at the time. This is why your home needs to be protected against all of the elements - and thresholds can help.
Door thresholds are a great way to weatherproof your entrance doors and protect the other rooms of your home. For instance, one of the common weather threats British homes can be susceptible to is flooding which can damage your possessions and increase the chances of damp and mould growing within your home. Door thresholds can help reduce this risk by being a physical barrier that minimises the inflow of water and protects your home from those pesky British showers.
With this in mind, you can see why door thresholds are not only a helpful addition to the entrance of your home, but are also valuable for bathroom doorways. This is because your bathroom can emit plenty of water and any plumbing catastrophe could make your home inhospitable. Though door thresholds won’t completely stop this from happening, they can minimise the overall risk.
Your home is your safe haven and no one wants their house to become ridden with pesky critters like insects, rodents or reptiles as this can bring in harmful bacteria and disease. Though even the smallest bugs can find their way through cracks and crevices, you want to make sure that this risk is minimised - and this can be achieved by the humble door threshold. A door threshold will lessen the gap between the door and door frame, stopping larger pests like rodents and small reptiles from getting into your home and wreaking havoc.
Door thresholds can offer a seamless aesthetic transition from one room to another. When choosing a door threshold, they can come in a variety of wooden grains, metal finishes, as carpet door strips or shapes including both curved and flat thresholds. Curved or flat thresholds are great for homeowners who need to move around large pieces of mobility and childcare equipment like wheelchairs and pushchairs.
Here at Pro-Fit Mouldings, we pride ourselves at providing stunning wooden mouldings and oak flooring for both homes and businesses. Our well-crafted pieces are the perfect fit and embellishment for homes of every style and age. Our door thresholds are not only immaculately made from high-quality wood, but also they are affordable too. Why not add a touch of warmth to your home both aesthetically and literally?
What’s more, our door thresholds alongside our other wooden mouldings are built to last. You can, therefore, be assured that they can sustain plenty of general wear and tear, and won’t need to be replaced or repaired for years.
To find out more about us, or to see our range of wooden mouldings, simply contact us today.