Learn how to save money this winter by winterizing your windows with Duck brand plastic insulation kits – the sponsor of this post.
If there is one thing that I dread each and every winter, it is most definitely the increased cost of our heating bill. It’s even more of a challenge now that heating costs continuing to rise – both gas and wood.
Much of the costs associated with winter heating are due to the fact that homes need winterization. In fact, nearly 2/3 of people in this country live in a home that needs weatherization.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, space heating and cooling accounts for 48% of the energy use in a typical U.S. home, making it the largest energy expense for most homes.
Of course, there are many ways to cut down your heating expenses, and one of the most effective ways to do this is by winterizing your windows. It’s estimated that by winterizing windows, you can reduce your heating expenses by 20-30%, which can really add up!
If you aren’t familiar with the purpose or process of winterizing windows, it’s done to prevent heat loss through your windows, which in turn makes your family more comfortable while saving you money.
Here are some things you can do to winterize your windows this winter.
1. Know Your Windows
Before you get started with the task of winterizing windows, first you need to figure out what types of windows you have in your home. Doing so will enable you to find the right items to winterize your windows.
There are a variety of different types of windows: single-hung, double-hung, horizontal sliding, swing out and slat piece, among others.
Also, consider how old your windows are, because if they are rather old and function quite unfavorably, perhaps what you need to do is replace them. Though this move may cost you more, it is more practical in the long run.
2. Check Your Windows for Leaks
There are a lot of ways for you to check your windows for leaks. One of the easiest ways to check them is by using a candle. Hold a lit candle at least four inches from the window, and notice whether or not the flame flickers. If it does, chances are that you’ve discovered a leak.
You can also use an incense stick. Watch the smoke trail as it moves with the air flow – it will lead you to a leak, if there is one to be found.
3. Install Weatherstripping to Block Leaks
The type of weatherstripping to use and how to install it depends on the type of your window. You can buy a weatherstripping kit or buy the materials separately.
Some of the materials that are often used are felt, aluminum and vinyl. You’ll need to install weatherstripping along frames, sashes and sides, depending on the type of your window.
4. Caulk your Windows.
Caulking is done to seal any cracks and gaps that may have formed on your windows. These cracks happen quite frequently in earthquake prone states like California as the house settles.
Apply caulk around the frame, sash or anywhere there is a crack that encourages heat loss. Interior caulking is better, although exterior caulking is also done for weatherproofing. Caulk wears out over time, so it is important to replace and re-apply when winterizing.
5. Install Updated Window Treatments
Another way to keep cold out and heat in is by using good window treatments. Look for descriptions that say the window treatments are designed for the purpose of temperature regulation.
Multi-layered treatments such as vinyl-backed curtains and draperies are often a good choice. Shoot for as many layers as you can to keep more warm air inside.
6. Cover Your Windows with Plastic
While covering your windows in plastic doesn’t sound aesthetically pleasing, it is one of the easiest solutions to the problem of leaky windows. You can choose to cover either the outside or the inside of your windows.
We typically cover the inside of our windows since we live in the mountains where we get regular snowfall and we want the plastic to last the whole season. It really works!
Most winters, we use a Duck® brand Roll-On® Window Insulation Kit. I find that this one easy step of covering our windows in plastic each winter makes our home much more comfortable and reduces how much we spend on heating.
Duck brand Roll-On Window Insulation Kits function by forming an extra barrier between the chilly outdoor air and your house’s warm air. This barrier helps block drafts and air leaks that cause high heating costs.
The patented Roll-On film includes a pre-taped edge for easy roll-on application. I love that they require no measuring and fit snugly to our indoor window frames to form an airtight seal. Plus, they are made with clear shrink film for good visibility.
They’re easy to install too. Watch this short video to see how:
To install them, you’ll want to clean your window frame with alcohol. Once that’s dry, you can follow the directions that comes with the package.
The first step is to adhere the double sided tape to the window frame. Once you’re happy with that, you remove the tape backing.
Next, you’ll spread the plastic across your window, ensuring it’s smoothly adhered to the double sided tape all around.
Once you’re happy with how it looks, you’ll blow dry the plastic to allow it to fit more tightly to your window. Then you can trim the excess plastic. You’d be surprised by how well the plastic blends in because it’s super clear!
Can you tell that this window is covered in plastic?
And don’t worry, they’re not only easy-to-install, but also to remove once the warmer weather returns. Use together with other Duck® brand weatherization products to make your home more comfortable and energy efficient all year long.