Your window not only let in the light, they also let in the heat during the summer and the cold during the winter as well, even if they are shut tight. Unless you have energy efficient windows, you will probably need to do a little maintenance in order to save money on your heating or air conditioning bill.
Naturally, you’ll want to find and address any major or obvious issues that are letting in the outside air when you want it to stay out. If it is windy outside, light a match and hold it near the window edges while being careful not to get near the drapes. If you see the smoke from the match flutter or the flame goes out entirely, then you need to airproof your windows.
Weather stripping is an inexpensive way to seal up the leaks around your windows, just be sure you do that before the cold air arrives because the adhesive will not be nearly as sticky.
Keeping out the Cold
If your house has a draft, considering using clear plastic window covers on the inside or outside of your windows during the winter months. They are easy to install and will create a dead air space between the cover and the window which will trap the air in-between. On the inside, just use a blow drier on the shrink-wrap to seal up the windows good. Remember, you will not be able to open your windows again unless you loosen the tape and then you’ll have to start all over again.
The large voids that exist between the window frames and the framing of the stud walls are often left open and are usually covered by the trim boards. By adding foam to these areas, you can help seal up and prevent any penetration by cold or hot air into your home. However, be careful that you don’t put in too much pressure because that might bow the window itself and make it inoperable.
Limiting the Heat Coming In
When the sun shines of the windows during the summer months, the heat will start coming in. You can start with spectrally selective coatings placed on the glass to reflect more of the sunlight away, but there are a few more tips as well.
Keep the curtains closed on the windows that generally face the sun all day. This will help reduce the amount of heat coming into the home. You can also install awnings, apply reflective film or add white window shades, blinds or drapes to the inside which will help reflect even more heat.
This is a tried and true method for getting a good air seal around the windows. Quite often, the old caulking will have to be scraped away so that you can add a fresh round that should last for years. In fact, you should apply the caulking to all the doors that exit the home as well. This way, you’ll really help keep your home cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. Plus, it will help keep out the bugs and small insects as well.