If you are feeling the chill from your windows, check out these suggestions from Paramount Siding and Windows in Denver. Weatherizing your windows will help retain heat, keep out the cold, and make sure that you and your family stay nice and cozy inside this winter season.
During the summer and spring months, we may not notice if our windows have gaps and cracks letting in the air. But as soon as winter rolls around, it is easy to tell that the cold is coming in. There is a two-pronged approach to keep the drafts at bay, caulking and applying weather-stripping. Caulking goes on the outside of your windows and weather-stripping stays on the inside of your windows.
First, head outside to take a look at the situation. Inspect your windows to make sure that there is no broken glass or cracked frames. If you do find this is the case, weatherizing will not prevent feeling the chill from your windows, so it’s best to get things fixed or your windows replaced.
Otherwise, the first step to getting ready to caulk is, using a rigid putty blade, scrape off as much of the old caulking and peeling paint as possible around the entire perimeter of the exterior windows. Then, using warm, soapy water and a scrub brush, wipe off all dust and dirt from surfaces that will be caulked. This prepares the surface areas for better adhesion and creates a much better result. Afterwards, wipe off with a clean, dry cloth, and you are ready for the next step.
Using an exterior-grade silicone sealant or a “silicone-ized” acrylic caulk, apply around the perimeter of each window. The goal is to apply a steady, continuous bead of caulk between the window frame and the siding to block out the wind. Try to do this on a dry day so that the caulk will stick and dry easily.
Now you are ready to head inside for the other part of the window weatherizing equation, so you can avoid feeling the chill from your windows this winter season. With weather-stripping, there are quite a few options to choose from, so we’ll cover a few options and you can pick the best one for your home.
- Spring-V Seal Weather-Stripping – This is a strip folded into a V-shape made of either metal or polypropylene. Metal options include aluminum, copper, bronze, and stainless steel. These must be cut using metal snips and nailed into place. The plastic version can be cut with scissors and may include an adhesive backing. As a tension-seal weather-stripping, the V-shape opens up and causes tension between the window frame and the sash which effectively blocks airflow.
- Double-Hung Window Spring-V Seal Installation – The spring-V seal option is installed at the sides of double-hung windows, vertically as well as horizontally at the place where the two window sashes meet when the window is closed.
- Casement and Sliding Window Spring-V Seal Installation – Install in vertical side jamb where the window sashes close.
- Adhesive-Backed Foam Weather-Stripping – This compression weather-stripping fills the gaps between the windows as it closes, stopping air from passing through and eliminating drafts.
- Double-Hung Window Foam Installation – Ensure that the area around the windows is cleaned thoroughly before applying. Cut the adhesive-backed foam weather-stripping with scissors to the appropriate length. Apply onto the top edge of the upper window sash and the bottom edge of the lower window sash. Or, if you prefer to not apply directly to the sash, instead apply the head jamb above upper sash and to the window sill below lower sash. In either case, once the double-hung windows close, the drafts are kept at bay.
- Casement and Sliding Window Foam Installation – Apply adhesive-backed foam vertically along the edge of the window sash and also along the side jamb.
- Rubber Gasket (Tubular) Weather-Stripping – Much like adhesive-backed foam weather-stripping, tubular rubber gasket weather-stripping conforms to the space between the window sash and window sill. Again, once the window closes, it fills in the gaps, not allowing any air to pass through. But instead of being a dense foam, it is hollow, tube-shaped and made of rubber material. Again, it may come with an adhesive backing or wood or metal flange for attaching with screws or nails. If you choose this option, find the tubular rubber gaskets that are sponge-filled. This type tends to hold its shape better and ultimately keeps out more drafts than the hollow-core, tubular rubber gaskets.
- Felt Weather-Stripping – Felt is one of the oldest weather-stripping materials out there. Although, these days it does not hold up as long as the newer weather-stripping technologies mentioned above. However, it is still a time-tested product that will last about 2-4 years once installed. It is affordable, easy to install, and comes with an adhesive backing or attached metal backing flange or not. It is a compressional weather-stripping and intended for use around double-hung, sliding, or casement windows.
Another Option to Consider
If you feel that this two-pronged approach is just not going to cut it this winter season or the next, then consider replacing the windows in your home instead. With new windows installed correctly, you are not going to have the issues with drafts that you might be having now. New windows not only prevent feeling the chill from your windows but they will increase the value of your home, save you money on the electricity bill, and improve your home’s aesthetic. Be sure to ask our experts about your options, including insulated windows and high-efficiency, Energy Star® windows.
At Paramount Siding and Windows, we have many beautiful and functional window options. You will have no trouble at all finding the perfect fit for your home’s style and your budget. Our dedicated team can demonstrate the incredible window options that will stand the test of time and provide you with a high level of satisfaction throughout the process. Check out what we offer on our website and better yet, request a consultation you are feeling the chill from your windows. Our excellent service and quality windows in Denver will keep you warm and cozy all winter long.