When it starts to get colder outside, you may notice a chilly draft coming in from your closed windows. In Quebec, the majority of windows are double glazed to prevent this, but as windows get older the gas between the two piece of glass begins to dissipate, and cold air begins to leak in. The cost of replacing windows can be extremely expensive, and in older apartments, landlords do not want to splurge on this cost, so they ignore the problem.
There is, however, a solution. You can insulate the windows yourself and for very little cost and effort, to stop cold air from coming into your apartment or home, and help to reduce heating costs.
- Draft Snake
You may have seen these under doors of garages with large spaces between the door and the floor. They can be used at door gaps and/or on window sills to help breach the gap and stop the cold air draft. While they are inexpensive and quite a fun DIY project, keep in mind that this is really only a temporary fix and it won’t help to insulate the window frame or the glass.
- Heavy Curtains or Cellular Shades
Curtains and shades are another good way to help prevent cold air coming into your home. Cellular Shades let light in and can be matched to your home. However, they can be quite costly and probably won’t insulate as well as heavy curtains. Heavy curtains can be layered, and can match to the decor of your interior. However, while inexpensive, due to their weight they will most likely block out a significant amount of light.
- Weather Insulation Film
This isn’t the most attractive option because it looks like you have shrink wrapped your windows. But it can be one of the least expensive and most effective ways to insulate against the cold. If you go to Rona, Reno Depot, Home Depot, similar stores, you will find kits for insulating your windows. Generally, a film is applied to the window sill with double-sided tape and heated with a hairdryer to seal it. This is best done before it gets too cold as the heat of the hair dryer and cold of the outside can crack a window.
- Rubber Weather seal
Self stick rubber weather seal is probably the most effective window insulation. It is quite cheap at hardware stores and easy to install. All you have to do is cut strips of the rubber to the correct window dimensions, peel the backing and stick it down to any place where there is a draft. Be aware though, when you go to remove this as the summer comes, due to its extreme adhesive nature paint may come off with it, or it may leave bits of sticky backing on surfaces.
Stay warm, from Settle-in.com!
Want to learn more about finding and keeping a safe, warm home in Quebec? Sign up for Settle-in.com and get full access to “The Guide.” Read the “Housing” chapter for more information on this subject.