Windows are an essential part of your home. No matter the style, age, or location of your house, your windows allow you to take in the outside world without leaving your couch. For those of us who reside in the Midwest, this is especially appealing. Having nice windows gives us a sense of connection to nature and allows us to keep watch over our children at play, no matter the season.
Despite their advantages, windows do present weak spots in our homes by allowing outdoor temperatures to seep inside and vice versa. No matter how new or advanced your windows are, there will always be less temperature protection than walled areas. In some places, this is not a significant problem. In Ohio, however, we are presented with a variety of extreme temperatures that can threaten the safety of our families. To protect your health and keep energy costs low, it’s important to make sure your windows are properly sealed. Luckily, this process does not always need to be complicated, and with these how-to tips, you’ll be on your way in no time.
Replace your window’s caulk
One of the first things you can do to increase your windows’ insulation is to replace the caulk that surrounds them. Caulk does wear down after a few years, and as it wears down, its efficacy diminishes. Caulk is often inexpensive and simple to install on your own. Follow these steps:
- Remove all old caulk and clean the area
- Insert silicone caulk into a caulk gun
- Apply the caulk to the area between the windows and the surrounding siding or wall
- Leave undisturbed for at least 8 hours
While this process generally only needs to be done every 3-5 years or so, it’s beneficial to examine your windows’ caulk yearly to avoid high energy bills and a drafty house.
Install weather stripping
Drafts don’t only come in through the sides of the window. At times, there are other areas of the windowpane or siding that leaves your window vulnerable to draft. In these cases, it’s best to buy some weather stripping from your local hardware store. This material is installed simply by cutting a strip to size, peeling the adhesive protective strip, and using it to fill the gap around your window. These strips are not meant to last forever, so it’s best to check them every few months to make sure they are still working effectively. When they seem to be loose or letting in a draft, it’s time to replace them.
Using a draft stopper or draft snake is a fine temporary fix. These small tubes simply need to be placed in front of the drafty area, as close to the gap as you can get. If you don’t have any on hand, try using a rolled towel in a pinch. Do keep in mind that neither a draft stopper nor any replacements are meant to be a permanent fix and are best used if more effective and permanent measures are not available.
If you’ve tried all of these tips and tactics and still find that your windows are drafty, it may be time to replace your windows altogether. High-quality, well-installed windows can last upwards of 20 years. However, window technology is constantly being upgraded, and there might be a solution that could work for you. These are some signs that your windows need to be replaced:
- Your energy bills have gone up
- There has been severe weather in your area
- You can see cracks or signs of breakage on your windows or frames
- Your home is historical, and the windows have not been upgraded
- Your sealing efforts have not yielded the desired results
In a lot of cases, sealing is really only a temporary measure. As soon as you have to go through a yearly process of sealing your windows to stay warm, it’s a sign that you will need new windows very soon.
Call Able Roofing
Window sealing is a great way to save on energy costs, but once you are relying on these measures to stay warm, it’s time to call Able Roofing. For over 30 years, we’ve been serving Ohio with the best roofing and window services money can buy. We know and understand the climate and challenges of Midwest weather, and we know what kind of windows work best with our sporadic weather patterns. Our family values and passion for our craft drive our business, and we have over 300,000 satisfied customers to back us up. Don’t go through another extreme weather season without proper windows — contact Able Roofing today.