Cheap Ways To Make Your Windows More Energy Efficient

By: Noah Pickett

We all know that utilities are rising and that this trend is destined to continue. Making your home more energy efficient is one of the smartest home improvements as it saves you money while you live there and you can sell your home for more when you leave. Read on for ways to increase your home's energy efficiency by improving your windows.

Stop The Draughts!

The concept of stopping draughts applies to your whole home, not just the windows. An energy efficient home would, without being airtight, minimize the flow of air out of the home. The cheapest thing you can do without replacing or modifying your existing windows is to install better draught-seals around the window frames. This will save you a little money on heating and cooling as less air will be escaping or entering, even if you have single-pane windows.

Buy A Window Insulator Kit

Companies like 3M offer these interior or exterior window insulator kits that are basically double-sides tape and a sheet of clear plastic. You clean the window frame, measure and cut the plastic sheet and then tape around your window where you want the sheet to fit. When you've attached the sheet, you use a hairdryer to make the plastic taut. These are great and cheap, and they do work as they create an air barrier which stops air from leaking. The drawbacks are that over time the plastic doesn't stay clear, it sags which looks unsightly and of course you have to cut if off if you want to open your window!

Make Your Own Internal Glazing.

Most hardware stores sell thin rolls of steel with strong adhesive on the back; they also sell other rolls that are magnetized. If you find a supplier of acrylic sheets, you can make your own secondary glazing. Acrylic sheets can be clear, colored or even tinted with UV protection; if you get museum quality acrylic it won't fade or yellow for decades. Let the supplier you found cut the sheets to the size of your window frames. You need to stick the magnetic rolls to the edges of the acrylic and let it bond, then measure where the other metal roll will need to be stuck on your window frame. It takes time and precise measuring but if you can get the two metal strips to match up you'll have an internal window that can be removed at your convenience. This will offer some sound proofing and make your windows more energy efficient by stopping leaks. Look on youtube for instructional videos of how it's done.

Try Window Film Or Solar Shades

If your issue if with direct heat from the sun, you can improve your window's energy efficiency with either window film on the interior of the glass or solar shades which are permanent material shades outside your home. Professional window film will have around a 5-7 year warranty and may peel, discolor or delaminate over time. You can save a lot by learning how to apply it yourself and buying the sheets. It will reject a lot of solar energy. Solar shades are attached to the exterior of your windows and will let a lot of light through but do alter the look of your windows. You have to be careful with both these options as if you choose film or shades that let too little visible light into your room it can be fairly depressing. Neither option will address air leaks in your windows. Internal acrylic windows are pretty smart as they stop leaks, reduce some sound and can be tinted to reject heat and UV light.

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Pleasant as windows might be, they prove to be one of the places where a great deal of heat is lost during the winter, and where heat comes in during the summer. There are many simple and relatively cheap ways to acquire energy efficient windows. To know more, click here!

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