From Daniel T on December 30th, 2009 in Window Replacement
Winter is here, and along with the cold weather comes a spike in energy bills. One of the best holiday gifts you can get for yourself and your family is a warm, snug home. Winterizing your windows can do that for you, by both fighting the cold and cutting down on energy costs. Here are some tips for keeping the cold out and the warm in with improved window efficiency which doesn’t require full window replacement.
A fresh application of caulk completely around the window frame will help to plug any drafty holes or gaps. Caulking is quite cheap and relatively easy to do. You will immediately notice a difference, especially if your windows are somewhat old and drafty. Don’t forget to caulk the outside as well.
2. Low-E Film Coating
Available at most home improvement stores, Low-E (low-emissivity) coating is a specially designed transparent covering for your windowpanes that will keep heat inside your house. It’s easy to install and available at a low cost.
3. Storm Windows
Instantly double (or triple) the efficiency of your windows by putting up storm windows. Often, you can buy stock kits for easy installation in a short amount of time. The new layer, plus the air pocket, which gives extra insulation, is an amazing efficiency boost.
4. Plastic Wrap
If you aren’t too concerned about appearance, spread a thick layer of plastic over the exterior of your window. Tacks or staples can secure the plastic to your window frame, and will block out an incredible amount of cold air.
5. Window Treatments
Using heavy cloth or lined curtains as your window treatments during the winter months will also trap heat inside and block out the cold. Layering blinds, draperies and other window treatments are especially good for preventing heat escape.
A little bit of weather stripping goes a long way when insulating your windows. Buy a roll of thick weather stripping and stuff portions of it wherever you can—along the lower sash, at the meeting rails, along the edge—anywhere that cold air might come in or warm air might slip out.
7. Thermal Shades
Although not the cheapest way to winterize your windows, thermal shades are among the best. Thermal shades are designed with a honeycomb pattern of insulating air pockets.
Use some or all of these techniques, and you are guaranteed to have a warmer winter. And then, just maybe, you can replace your old windows with new energy-efficient ones.