It’s been a cold year so far in Quebec, reaching temperatures that feel like -50 in some areas.
When it’s that frigid outside, it causes chilly temperatures inside the house as well, regardless of how high you set the heat. One of the most common ways cold air enters the house is through drafty windows.
Proper window insulation keeps warm air inside and cold air from entering the home. If you don’t have the budget for replacement, here’s what you need to know about window caulking and other types of insulation.
Doors and windows account for around 25% of total heat loss. Many people believe window replacement is the only way to fix drafty windows. However, window replacement for an average-sized home can cost $10,000 or more, and not everyone has the budget for it.
Residential caulking is one of the best ways to seal windows against water and cold winter air. It also helps to prevent heat from leaving the building.
This sealant prevents air and water movement, providing a barrier that keeps heat inside the home and stops frigid air from entering. It’s also extremely efficient when performed by a professional caulking company.
One mistake homeowners often make is attempting to do the job independently. DIYers often skip the essential prep work. Preparing the surface first is crucial, or the caulk won’t last as long.
Another mistake is neglecting to use a backing material, which optimizes the performance of the insulation.
A professional window caulker has the tools and experience necessary to ensure a perfect seal every time. They know how to prep the surface, clean the area and create a smooth and flawless caulking joint.
Caulking should be a key part of the winterization process, which improves the energy efficiency of your home.
The best part is that the price of professional caulking is a fraction of the cost of replacing all your windows. It can also last for 10-20 years or so. It’s the most affordable way to delay replacing your windows until you have the funds.
Window Film Insulation
While caulking is the most efficient way to insulate a window, there are other steps you can take to temporarily improve your home’s energy efficiency.
Another method is to use window film, which is similar to shrink wrap. It attaches to a window using a double-sided adhesive and shrinks to fit the window opening with heat from a hair dryer.
The downside is that you can’t open the windows without breaking this seal. As such, it’s a temporary measure, and you’ll have to reapply it when you break the seal.
Weather stripping helps to seal air leaks around doors and windows. It’s similar to caulking, but it’s temporary and best for movable building components rather than stationary ones. Caulk is best for stationary components.
You want weather stripping that can withstand friction, temperature, and wear and tear. There are many types of weather stripping, including:
- Foam tape
- V strip
- Door sweeps
- Silicone, rubber, and vinyl
Knowing which type to use depends on the size of the crack or gap. Weatherstripping, in combination with window caulking, is an efficient way to stop heat loss and prevent cold air from entering the home.
One way to keep the home warmer is to install thermal curtains or blinds. These types of window treatments help to prevent radiant heat loss. They also trap air in the folds of the fabric, reducing the amount of chilly air in the room.
The best thermal curtains have various layers of fabric and padding to create an insulating effect. They also block light and reduce sound, making them ideal for homes near busy streets, businesses, or other buildings.
However, thermal curtains can get pricey. To save money, be sure to do some comparison shopping.
Also, to make a significant difference, combine thermal window treatments with other methods mentioned on the list. It’s the best way to winterize your home, depending on your budget.
Other Ways to Improve Energy Efficiency
In addition to the tips mentioned above, there are some other steps you can take to stay cozy inside.
If you have radiators, clear any furniture and items away from them to improve performance. Furniture placed in front of the radiator will simply absorb the heat, preventing it from warming the rest of the building.
Placing carpets on bare floors also adds an additional layer of warmth. It’s much more comfortable to walk across warm floors, especially in the early morning or the middle of the night.
Draft stoppers or “snakes” are fabric tubes stuffed with insulating material such as foam, fabric, sand, rice, or beans. You can place them along the bottom of windows and doors, though they won’t help with drafts that come from the tops or sides of a window.
Perform a home energy assessment to pinpoint problems and spot places for improvements. If you’re tight on money, you can perform one yourself. Even newly constructed homes have room for improvement, which can help you save on your heating and cooling bills.
When Is Window Replacement Necessary?
Now that you know more about window insulation, you’re likely wondering when you can save and when to replace those old windows.
Should you start searching for a “caulking contractor near me,” or is it time for a replacement?
The good news is that most windows benefit from a professional caulking service. Unless your window is beyond repair, you can save money by sealing cracks and gaps.
Window Insulation: Finding Caulking Services Near Me
Even if you’re on a budget, you still have options for window insulation. Caulking is the most efficient way to improve the energy efficiency of a building, and it’s also the longest-lasting option. You can delay window replacement for years with this method.
Do you need caulking services on the south shore of Montreal? At Calfeutrage Apex Caulking, we offer residential clients a 15-year limited warranty. Caulking is still possible even in temperatures as low as -29°C as long as surfaces are dry, so don’t put it off any longer.
Take a look at our services and then get a free quote today to get started.