My 10-minute install guide for the Model 3 door seal kits (e.g. Basenor, or P & Z seals, etc).
I’m sick of all the awful videos and guides out there. I’m no genius but couldn’t help noticing half of them did it wrong (cutting holes in the seals, taping the seals at the wrong angle, etc). To be fair, the guides out there don’t explain well enough (either too long or too short) and there isn’t even official instructions from the manufacturers themselves.
But the install is super-easy anyway and shouldn’t take you more than 10-15 minutes. All you need is the kit and some scissors.
(I’ll add photos/videos eventually.)
STEP 1 – buy a door seal kit
I use the “BASENOR Tesla Model 3 Door Seal Kit”…they have a crap ton of keywords…the official name is “BASENOR Tesla Model 3 Door Seal Kit Soundproof Rubber Weather Draft Seal Strip Wind Noise Reduction Kit”.
Why did I use BASENOR and not other kits?
BASENOR had good reviews at the time I researched. Almost all of those Amazon sellers are selling the same copycat stuff anyway. I think any would be fine. I’m sure you can save a good $10-20 going with a smaller one and still get same quality/functionality. Heck, many will give you the kit for free if you leave them a 5-star review.
But did I take a chance on a smaller one? No, I did not. I don’t have time to order something that turns out to be really bad crap.
Why did I use BASENOR instead of buying P-seals and Z-seals separately on eBay?
What about getting seals on eBay? Well, the thing is you would need 3 different kinds of seals, and also the adhesive promoter wipes. And if you buy each one for $7-10, the price comes out to about the same BUT you get a lot more material (probably enough to do 2-3 cars).
The kits already have exactly the amount of material you need, pre-cut, and labelled for where they go (left/right, front/rear, A/B pillars), and also the adhesive promoter wipes. They’ll save you lots of time and worth the cost IMO.
STEP 2 – install preparation
- Clean doors/doorways trim – using microfiber cloth, towels, or wet wipes. Then dry off. Using microfiber cloth is best to avoid scratching any paint but those areas aren’t exposed much anyway. Just be gentle.
- Lay seals by their location – open up the package and lay the pieces nearby the areas where they’re installed.
STEP 3 – install door seals
Ignore whatever the instructions tell you and just listen to me. Start with REAR RIGHT, then REAR LEFT, then FRONT RIGHT, and finally FRONT LEFT. Why? Because it makes more sense for you to “learn” on the job starting with the doors farthest from you.
REAR DOORS (go from right-to-left):
- IMPORTANT NOTE before removing P-seal backing: 1) place P-seal on outside edge below the drain holes, and 2) aim the P-seal flap down and outwards!!! The P-seal should be on the outside edge extending the flap past the edge; this helps to create an actual air seal. Some people do it wrong here and aim it inwards, then cut into the flap to avoid blocking drain holes and then make Youtube videos teaching others how to do it wrong. ARGH!!!
- Wipe door edge with adhesive promoter strip (one or two quick wipes is enough) just before you lay the seal.
- Using the CLOSED end of the seal (so no water gets in)…start from the top, with the seal reaching the top trim of the door (leaving no air gaps). Remove P-seal adhesive backing (few inches at a time) and lay it. Make sure not to stretch it as you’re laying it.
- Once you reach the bottom…my tip is to poke the seal past the front edge of the door, close the door, and then trim (with your scissors) from the OUTSIDE of the door. I don’t recommend trimming from the INSIDE of the door as you’d likely mis-cut it to be shorter than you wanted. 🙂
- Repeat for REAR LEFT door.
FRONT DOORS (go from right-to-left):
- Same thing like before (P-seal on the edge, flap facing outwards) but this time you start from the corner, then go up.
- Then go from the corner to the inside.
- Do the same for FRONT LEFT door.
STEP 4 – install pillar seals
Again, we go from RIGHT-to-LEFT so you practice with the far side. We start with pillar B first because it’s much easier than pillar A (which is the toughest part of the job).
Pillar B (go from right-to-left):
- Easy as heck but lots of variation here from all the Youtube videos I’ve seen. Some do it with the seal facing outwards (stopping partially where the metal flap ends), others have the seal facing sideways towards front of car (allowing it to go all the way down the door edge.
- I recommend recommend a combination of both. Start at the top with the seal facing OUTWARDS (towards you), and as you reach the bottom, you can start twisting it to go sideways and into the inside angled-edge of the door. This provides the best coverage IMO, looks better since it hides as much of the adhesive sides as possible. I think it’s better protection for the adhesive and avoids dirt from getting visibly stuck in there.
- Trim when you reach the bottom.
Pillar A (go from right-to-left):
- This is the hardest part of the install because you have to fit your hand through the wiring and door joints and somehow lay the seal neatly. IMO, people have such a hard time because they’re trying to look at their hand. It’s much easier if you just turn your head away and feel your way through with your fingers. You really don’t have to see it as you’re working.
- Start by fishing the strip through the opening.
- Then slowly peel off the adhesive backing as you work from top-to-bottom.
- Do the other side.
CONGRATULATIONS! YOU’RE DONE! Now go tell everybody and the internet how you did it so easily and that it’s totally worth the effort!
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
Does it really reduce noise?
- Yes. I definitely hear less wind and road noise. But to really REALLY reduce noise, you’ll need more measures than only this (although some people are satisfied with this already).
Is this door seal better than other noise reduction methods?
- Depends on how your car was made, what kind of noises you’re having (wind vs road), and how your car was made (different cars have different “defects”).
- This kit is probably better than the RPMTesla wind reduction rubber tube that goes on your sunroof. But I do recommend using that one as well.
- This kit is not better than installing sound dampening material (CLD like Dynamat, CCF separators) or soundproofing material (acoustic foam, MLV).
Are all other door seal kits installed the same way?
- Yes, I think they’re all the same.
Does it make your doors harder to close?
- Yes. Requires slightly more pressure but not annoying at all. They definitely sound nicer and more solid (“premium”). I think the seal will probably soften slightly over time and then will be perfect.
Do I recommend doubling up on seals?
- No. It would make your doors even harder to close and doesn’t block more noise, IMO.
- I’m also not sure how the logic would work as I think to some degree the extra “seals” would only widen the gaps. There are some areas however that do look like you could add more material at a different angle but really I don’t think this is the way to do it. If you want to do extra, put actual soundproofing material.