Monday, November 21, 2011

Winterizing Our House

Despite some of the 70 degree warm weather days we've been having here Fall is here and Winter is just waiting to strike.  Since our (rental) house is old and drafty I decided to take our warmth (and heating bill dollars) into my own hands.  I was at Lowes and found a window seal kit.  Basically you seal plastic around your window frames so it adds an extra barrier against drafts and heat escaping.  It sounded pretty good and for $7 it claimed to do 5 windows.  All you needed in addition to the kit was a hair dryer (I'm a girl; so check).  

”winterizing
the before is just a regular shot of one of our windows.  This may be the bathroom
window but they all look exactly the same.  

”winterizing


”winterizing

Lay the plastic on the largest surface you can find in your house.  This was our kitchen.  I tried to get the most out of the given plastic and measure smartly.  Unfortunately our windows are taller than the width of the plastic.  I started to get the feeling I'd run of out plastic very quickly.  

”winterizing

You basically stick the provided double sided tape around the inside of your window frame then hang the plastic up.  In this case I encased our blinds inside the plastic.  This was the bathroom so there is no worry of needing to open the blinds - all winter ever.

”winterizing

I trimmed it up and then got the hair dryer out.  There are no photos of me hair drying the plastic since this was a solo project home alone.  Just imagine a hair dryer 1" from the plastic.  It was really cool how it stretched the plastic out and got rid of all the wrinkles.  

”winterizing


See how there is only a hint of a tiny wrinkle?  Done!  We're improving our R-values by 90%!  No clue what that means but hopefully it translates to cheaper heating bills.  I repeated the steps for another window then ran out of plastic.  I know the package said 5 windows!  I manged to piece together a third window by taping some pieces together with regular packaging tape.  I did three windows that are out of the way and we don't use very often.  They are very see through though and you can barely tell there's an extra layer there.  

Any other winterizing tips out there?  I may blog about our fireplace dilemma soon.

3 comments :

  1. Post again in the spring when you take the plastic off. I really appreciated having it on at our old house, but when we took it off in the spring, the adhesive took with it layers of paint. We were living in an old house (built pre-1920) and the only thing which had been done to the windows since then was layer and layer of paint. So perhaps had we stripped the paint, painted one layer and used the plastic, it would have been okay...

    Some of the windows' adhesive also became non-sticky midwinter and the plastic separated from the adhesive. Still better than nothing, but I was disappointed nonetheless.

    Wow, that's a lot to say about window plastic. I hope your experience goes better than mine!

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  2. We used to do this when I was a kid...I keep telling my husband we should do this, but he's more interested in tearing down walls and putting in new insulation. I think this is awesome way to inexpensively save on heating. Good job! You can't even notice it! Happy Thanksgiving!

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  3. @Christen I'll make sure to post this come spring. But I've been thinking that since our windows don't actually open there is no reason to take it down! Painted so many times they don't open. Also some were nailed shut. Seriously I know it's not up to code and hopefully it'll be fixed before then but why not insulate the heat out in summer?!

    Also the packaging says to take a hair dryer to the tape to heat it if it's giving you difficulty when removing.

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