How to Keep From Losing Heat From Windows & Doors


As fall fades and winter sets in, you may realize that your home is losing more heat from your windows and doors than it's keeping in. To prevent enormous energy bills and prevent putting your comfort level in jeopardy, take the time to perform some easy fixes to winterize your windows and doors to prevent heat loss.

Things You'll Need

  • Weather stripping
  • Shrink wrap plastic
  • Spray caulk insulation
  • Tape measure
  • Scissors
  • Pen and paper
  • Measure the length of all door and window seams that need to be weather stripped and write down the measurements. Add approximately two inches to each measurement. Cut the weather stripping to length according to your measurements using scissors (don't forget to allow for an additional two inches per measurement). Apply the stripping to the window or door according to package directions, using either nails, screws or adhesive. Apply the weather stripping to the tops and sides of all doors and all sides of the windows. Attach a door sweep according to package directions to the bottom of each drafty door.

  • Apply shrinkwrap plastic to make a tight seal on windows that are particularly drafty (you can do this in addition to the application of the weather stripping). Hang thick drapery in front of drafty windows as an alternative to the shrinkwrap application.

  • Remove all air conditioning units from windows before winter. Secure air conditioning covers over units that are affixed permanently into windows or walls as an alternative to removing the unit altogether. Insert plastic outlet safety covers into outlets that are not being used in order to prevent heat from escaping through these unused outlets.

  • Use spray caulk insulation to fill in around all holes around pipes and cables that go through the external walls of the property. Use the "reverse" air flow setting on all ceiling fans so that the fans are pushing air downward, rather than pulling it upward during the winter months.

Tips & Warnings

  • To quickly find out whether an area has a draft that needs remedied, light a long stick of incense and hold the smoke from the incense near any holes or places where heat may escape from the home. Any blowing or movement of the smoke indicates draft.

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  • Photo Credit Tom Fowlks/Digital Vision/Getty Images
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