How to cover windows?

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Answered

I have very old windows that let the cold in. I'm not in a position to replace them (probably would have to mortgage home). Ha Ha What is the best type of plastic can I get to cover them during the winter. Is 6 mil a good thickness to do the trick?

  6 answers
  • Kelli L. Milligan Kelli L. Milligan on Oct 15, 2018

    You could also add lined draperies. They really work well.

  • Gk Gk on Oct 15, 2018

    Buy the inside window kits that are available in different sizes. You apply two sided tape around your window trim, attach the plastic, and then shrink dry with a hair dryer. Provides a nice clear view to outside but provides a seal to keep cold air out. I much prefer these inside kits to trying to put plastic on the outside. If you do happen to have old storm windows you could use the kit on each storm window as well so you would have double coverage. You also might consider looking at storm windows that could fit over your old windows. Some can be fairly inexpensive. You will also want to layer your inside window treatments for winter. Adding some cellular blinds and heavier drapes help too.

    And...you mention having to mortgage your home to buy new windows...I DID redo my mortgage so that I could buy new windows! I also included new siding in the amount--which was installed over my old siding--so I basically have 2 layers of siding with Tyvek house wrap in between --to keep out the winter cold-- I was able to add the window/siding cost to my existing mortgage with a very small change in my monthly payment. It made a HUGE difference in my heating costs.

    • Janice Massey-Saylor Janice Massey-Saylor on Oct 15, 2018

      Thank Gk. I do not have storm windows and purchasing is out of my budget, plus I do not have a mortgage on my house and do not intend on getting one. I am on a limited income (SS) and do not wish to have a bill I might not be able to pay that might cause me to lose my home. Where can the inside window kits be purchased? I'm not familiar with those. But I do appreciate the suggestions.

  • Sharon Sharon on Oct 15, 2018

    I just ordered thermal curtains for my old 1940s windows. And I use rope caulk around the storm window pane to prevent drafts, as well as caulk the windows themselves when needed. Rope caulk is a blessing for old houses.... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lof3cQe0RfM its cheap, and can peel right off in the spring, it stays flexible.

    If its windows you don't have to see out of, use a piece of bubble wrap, spritz the glass with some water and place a piece cut to size with the bubbles on the window. You can peel right off if needed.

    The Dollar Tree right now has the window insulation kits for doors and windows. Great price.

  • Janice Massey-Saylor Janice Massey-Saylor on Oct 15, 2018

    Thanks, Sharon. I will watch the link you suggested. I'm not familiar with rope caulking. The bubble wrap doesn't come off once the water dries? I will also check into the window insulation kits at our Dollar Tree..........I love that place! I appreciate your suggestions.

  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on Oct 15, 2018

    Storm windows would offer the best insulation. I don't think 6 mil is quite thick enough to see a difference. You probably want to go up one size. I've also seen people use the bubble wrap and it stays, it's a static cling thing. Sharon has great points re: caulking as well.

    • Janice Massey-Saylor Janice Massey-Saylor on Oct 15, 2018

      Thanks, Kathy. I didn't know that about the bubble wrap. Since I have a whole roll of that, I might give it a try. I appreciate your response.

  • Gk Gk on Oct 15, 2018

    Janice, You can buy the window kits at places like WalMart, Menards, Home Depot, Lowes, etc. You will also find them at hardware stores. You can order them online from Amazon. I have used 2 brands: 3M and Duck. Either works well. I would say that the 3M brand may be just a bit/slightly heavier and shrinks clearer than the Duck brand but I also see that Duck makes a heavier plastic kit as well. You will have to measure your windows to see which sizes to buy. Some boxes can cover more than one window when you trim the plastic to fit--make sure you don't cut it too close--give yourself an excess to work with. You can buy patio size for larger windows. I see that someone also suggested rope caulking--that may be something you might also want to add before you put the plastic over your windows. Everything helps! I hope you are able to find what you need in your area and I hope that it works for you. Winter can be so awful and cold.

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