How Window Insulation Can Save You Money

Weatherproofing windows yourself can be done quickly and cheaply, but it pays off in cost savings and home comfort.

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Tips for preparing your home for winter.

Glass has no insulating value, so windows are one of the biggest areas of heat and cooling loss in a house. Insulating them can save money and make your house more comfortable, and if you choose certain types, can also cut harmful UV exposure.

If replacing windows is out of the equation, insulate the ones you have. Insulation comes in these basic types:

·         Window seals

·         Rope caulk

·         Window film

Window Seals

Weather-strip seals are used to fill gaps around doors and windows. Window seals come in foam, silicone and vinyl and are either nailed into place or have self-adhesive backing that sticks to the perimeter of the window. They’re made to withstand temperature changes and are great draft-killers, reducing your energy bills and making your house more comfortable all year long.

When installing them, clean and dry the area where they’ll be applied carefully; they won’t stick to a dirty surface. Use a putty knife or other flat instrument to work them gently into corners.

Rope Caulk

When weatherproofing windows, consider rope caulk. Rope caulk is non-hardening putty that comes in a roll, and can be cut to the right size and pressed into place. Pack it into any cracks or holes that are too small for window seals.

Press the caulk cord into place with your fingertips – no tools needed. You can seal the window shut in the winter and pull the caulk out in the summer. Coil it up, save it in a plastic bag, and reuse it next year. Use this to seal leaky sashes, too.

Window Film

Take a hint from auto detailers and use window film as a window insulator. Residential window film comes in a variety of thicknesses, the thinnest for decorative purposes and the thickest as security/storm insulation. All thicknesses have insular properties, though the thicker the film, the better it insulates.

Window film is easily applied. Clean the glass, cut the film to size, and adhere it to the window with the self-adhesive backing.

Use window film only on windows that are not broken or loose, and don’t use it on double-paned glass because it will cause the windows to fog.

Hacks

One cheap way to insulate is to use bubble wrap. Spray water on the bubble wrap and use it to adhere the bubbles on the glass. Tape along the sides for extra hold. This gives the glass a little more insulating value, but isn’t good for windows you need to see out of.

Another is to use a thin piece of plastic, like a clear garbage bag. Cut the plastic to size then tape around the edges with painter’s tape.

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