At Alamance Insulation and Gutters, we’re a leader in the insulation and home performance industries. Serving customers throughout North Carolina, from Greensboro, Burlington, Elon and Mebane to Chapel Hill, Durham, and Raleigh, we can help with all your insulation and gutter needs. We’re expecting a cold winter this year – whenever that may happen – and your gutters and insulation could be at risk. If you’re in an area that gets lots of snow and colder temperatures, the inside of your house may be colder than usual. This may be because of drafty windows. For all your insulation needs – in winter or otherwise – contact Alamance Insulation and Gutters today. We’d love to help!
Old windows are prone to air leaks; windows can shrink with age and wear, which lets in cold air. Even newer windows may have worn-out weather stripping. Here are a few easy (and cheap!) solutions to fix this issue for now. We’d recommend you with these choices for a temporary fix:
- V-seal weather stripping. Add plastic weather stripping along the sides of the sashes. Windows can open and shut even with the V-seal in place.
- Rope caulk. This soft, sticky stuff can be molded to suit the gap — and removes easily at the end of the season.
- Shrink film. Applied with double-sided tape, this clear plastic sheeting shrinks drum-tight when heated with a hair dryer. The film seals off drafts and captures an insulating buffer of air. Use rubbing alcohol to help release the tape in the spring to avoid pulling off paint.
- Nail polish. If carefully applied, clear polish fills the crack almost invisibly. Once hardened, the polish will stabilize the glass until you can replace it in the spring. Or, apply clear weather-seal tape to the crack.
- Draft snake. If the bottom of your window leaks cold air, buy a foam-and-fabric draft snake kit. Cut the 36-inch foam tube provided to length and slip the washable cover over it. Then place the snake on the sill and shut the window on it to seal the deal.
If you’re looking for more of a long-term fix, we’ve got you covered on that too. Here are three long-term solutions to drafty windows:
Replace loose or missing glazing. The glazing putty that seals window panes can crack and fall out with time. Doing a great job of glazing takes practice, but even a mediocre job will do a lot to eliminate leaks. Best part is it only costs a few bucks. Some quick tips:
Begin by removing all the old putty.
Detach the pane and add a bed of fresh putty.
Gently press the glass into the putty and add glazing points — small metal points that push into the sash to secure the pane.
Push points into place with a flat-bladed screwdriver.
Apply a long thin roll of putty and use a clean putty knife to smooth it in place.
- Rejuvenate storm windows. If you have old storm windows stacked in the garage rafters, reglaze and repaint them, and put them up every fall. Storm windows not only cut drafts, they insulate. Cost: Once they’re fixed up, it only costs an afternoon of washing and installing the storms.
- Replace the window. A worn, rotted, or chronically rattling window is simply past its useful life. Replacing old windows is a job for a pro. You’ll be able to take your pick of low-maintenance frame materials, as well as low-E and insulated glass options. Cost: About $600 per window.