Have you ever noticed a burst of cold air when you walk by a window? Or a room in your home that won’t get warm, no matter what you do? If so, you may have drafty windows. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, drafty windows can be responsible for up to one-third of a home’s heat loss in the winter. This leads to homeowners cranking up the thermostat in an attempt to keep warm, which can increase their energy bill. To save you money and get your home to a comfortable temperature, here are five quick and easy fixes for drafty windows.
1. Weather stripping
Weather stripping can stop cold air from entering your home, especially if there are visible cracks or gaps in your windows. Weather stripping can be installed easily on your own, or installed by professionals as part of a window repair job.
There are several types of weather stripping available, and each one has its own pros and cons.
Tension seals are made of vinyl or aluminum and come in a folded V-shape. When applied to the sides of windows, tension seals stop drafts by squeezing against the edges of the window.
Tension seals may increase the resistance when opening a window, but it is notably durable and nearly invisible once it’s in place.
Foam tape is applied to the top and bottom of a window sash and is easy to install because of its sticky base. Foam tape will not interfere with the regular operation of a window, but it’s visible and can cause wear and tear over time. Because its sold in varying widths and thicknesses, foam tape is best for irregularly-sized cracks.
Felt weather stripping is meant to be stapled or nailed around a window’s sash and is generally easy to install. Felt weather stripping is inexpensive, however, it typically lasts one to two years—meaning you’ll have to reinstall it.
Felt weather stripping can easily be damaged by moisture, friction, and operating the window. This makes felt weather stripping best for windows that aren’t opened very frequently.
2. Window caulking
When windows are installed, caulking is applied to reduce drafts and heat loss. However, over time this caulking can develop cracks or gaps, especially if the window is several decades old. Use a caulking gun to seal small cracks in your windows and prevent drafts. Window caulking guns can be found at any home repair store and resemble large hot glue guns.
For larger cracks and gaps in caulking, it’s best to call a professional. As part of our window repair services, we can repair your window’s caulking and seal them against even the toughest drafts.
3. Window film
For increased window insulation and protection against drafts at a cheap price, window film is an ideal solution. Installing window film can help your home retain up to 55% of its heat during the winter and is almost completely invisible once it is applied. As a downside, you will not be able to open the window once the film is applied.
To apply window film to your windows, follow these easy steps:
- Prepare the window by cleaning both the window and the frame.
- Record the dimensions of your window using a tape measure and add one inch to each side to allow for shrinkage.
- Using scissors or a straight edge, cut the plastic film into the dimensions you recorded.
- Starting at the top corners of the window, attach the film to the window using adhesive tape. Use your hands to smooth any wrinkles and to reinforce the seal.
- Seal the film using a blow dryer. Hold the dryer over the border of the window frame. Be careful not to touch the dryer to the plastic as that can cause it to melt.
4. Shades and curtains
If you want to address your drafty windows without having to install anything, consider shades and curtains. Cellular shades have the ability to prevent warm air from escaping, and cold air from coming in, because of their unique honeycomb shaped cells that trap air between the window and the room.
Layered curtains can help keep drafts at bay by reducing the amount of cold air that enters the room. As a bonus, layered curtains can help a room feel cozy and inviting while also being an easy way to accent and accessorize any room in your home. With a wide variety of colors and styles available, it’s easy to find layered curtains that fit your individual tastes.
5. Draft blockers
Draft blockers, also known as draft snakes or draft pillows, function exactly how they sound—by physically blocking air from entering your home. Simply place the draft blocker at the base of your window and enjoy a warmer room.
For a DIY solution, you can easily make draft blockers using household materials. Draft blockers are usually made of fabric, such as polyester, and filled with sand, dried beans, or anything that will add weight. Rolled up towels or blankets are also used as draft blockers.
Long term solutions
A quick fix for your drafty windows will get you through the winter, but to get to the root of the problem, a long-term solution may be needed. Replacing old, drafty windows with modern energy-efficient ones is one of the best investments you can make for your home. Not only will new windows lower your energy bill and save you money in the long run, they’ll also enhance the look and feel of your home.
At True View, we have more than a decade of experience in window replacement and repairs. From beginning to end, our skilled technicians perform quality work and ensure the job is done right every step of the way. We understand that new windows can be an investment, which is why we offer flexible financing options.
How True View can help
Tired of drafty windows? Don’t know where to start with scheduling repairs, or buying replacement windows? For anything and everything window or glass related, True View is your best source. Contact us today to get started with a free over-the-phone quote.