5 Ways to Insulate Your Windows for Winter

5 Ways to Insulate Your Windows for Winter

Sarah Coffey
Dec 6, 2007

While looking into the best way to insulate our drafty windows this winter (apart from replacing them), we put together this mini-guide of solutions we found so far. For the pros and cons of everything from layered curtains to shrink-wrap film, click below.

posted originally from: AT:Chicago

Left to Right, Top to Bottom:

1) Rubber Weather Sealing:
You can buy strips of self-stick rubber weather sealing at a hardware store. Cut long strips down to fit your window dimensions, then peel and stick to the frame to close any gaps and keep out drafts. Pros: Cheap, effective, minimal alterations to appearance of windows. Cons: When you peel away the rubber strips, they can damage paint or leave a sticky residue. Image via Amazon.

2) Window Insulation Film:
You can buy window insulation kits from a hardware store. Kits usually include plastic shrink film that is applied to the indoor window frame with double-stick tape, then heated with a hair dryer to shrink the film and remove any wrinkles. Pros: Cheap and effective. Cons: Gives windows a cloudy, shrink-wrapped look. Image: 3M Indoor Window Insulation Kit, $16.78 at Amazon.

3) Cellular Shades:
Cellular Shades insulate while still letting in light through the windows. They can be ordered and custom cut from home and design centers. We found a good set of step-by-step instructions for installation here. Pros: They let in light and can be custom-fitted for doors and windows. Cons: They can be expensive and may not insulate as much as heavier curtains. Image via Levolor.

4) Layered Curtains:
Use heavy fabrics or layered curtains over the windows to keep out drafts. Pros: Looks good, can be matched to your home decor. Cons: Curtains can be expensive and heavy drapes can block out light. Image via Restoration Hardware.

5) Draft Snakes:
Draft snakes are fabric tubes placed on a window sill or under a door to prevent cold air from creeping in. You can make one by sewing a tube of fabric to fit the width of your window and filling it with dried rice. Pros: Cheap, easy to make as a DIY project. Cons: It only insulates the window sill, not the glass or frame. Image and pattern for draft snake via Lotta Jansdotter's Simple Sewing.

Related Links:

  • How To: Stay Warm at Home Without Much Heat
  • Insulating Windows With Curtains
  • Good Questions: Short Shades for Insulation?
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