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Draughty window solutions: How to fix draughty windows

By Energy Company Numbers on November 4, 2016 in Help and advice
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If you find that your energy bills are often through the rough because you’re constantly battling to keep the heat at a reasonable temperature while the cracked windows and doors around your home fill your property with cold air, then you might need to think about some repair solutions fast. While having rattling windows and billowing curtains in the summer months might not be as much of a problem, the chances are that it becomes a significant concern as the weather grows cooler during the winter months. Don’t waste your cash on energy that you’re simply throwing out of the window!

Related: How to make your home more energy efficient this winter

There are plenty of different reasons why you might find yourself suffering from draughty windows. In older houses, the glazing putty that was used to secure your window might have dried out, gotten brittle, and started to break away – leaving the glass to rattle in the wind. On the other hand, if you have double-hung sashes or wood windows, then these can shrink with wear and age – letting the cold air flood in. Even newer windows can suffer from weather stripping and worn-out gaskets.

How to Fix Problems Right Now

If you need an instant fix to deal with your windows this second – then we do have a couple of potential solutions. However, it’s worth noting that these fixes are intended as a long-term solution to window issues. Instead, they should work to get you through the next week or so comfortably while you’re waiting for a proper fix.

  • V-Seal Weather Stripping – Add a plastic weather stripping seal along the sides of your windows. This should help to keep some of your heat inside – where you need it most.
  • Rope Caulk – This simple stuff can be moulded into your gap however you like, and it also removes quite easily towards the end of the season – or when you decide to get an expert out to help you with your window problems.
  • Shrink film – When applied with double-sided tape, this clear plastic sheet can shrink tight when it is heated with a hairdryer. The film will help to seal off drafts and create an insulating buffer of air.
  • Nail Polish – When painted very carefully onto cracks, clear nail polish can fill gaps in your window almost without leaving a trace. Once it hardens, the polish will stabilise the glass until you can replace it at a later time.

How to Fix Problems Long-Term

While those short-term fixes might help you to maintain heat and comfort in your home for a small amount of time – they’re definitely not a lasting solution to a serious draft problem. If you want to fix draughty windows for good, then you’re going to need to take steps to address the underlying issue. This might mean:

  1. Replacing Missing or Loose Glazing

If the glazing putty that seals your window panes has started to dry, crack, or fall out over time, then you’re going to need to replace it. Sometimes it can be difficult to do a good job of this by yourself, but the chances are that even a limited job should be useful at eliminating leaks.

  1. Fill Cracks around the window

If there are cracks in the wooden frame surrounding your window, but you’re not ready to get rid of the entire thing just yet, then you’re going to need to fill them in to avoid losing all of your heat during the winter months. Ask an expert for help if you’re not sure how to go about this yourself.

  1. Replace the Window entirely

If your window is rotting, constantly rattling, or completely worn out, then there may be nothing left to do but replace it for a better option. Replacing an old window is a job that should be left to the professionals, but you should have the opportunity to pick from a fantastic selection of insulated glasses, low-maintenance frame materials, and styles. You might even be able to upgrade your energy efficiency with a new window!

Related: How to Reduce Your Energy Bills in 2016/17

About the Author

Energy Company NumbersView all posts by Energy Company Numbers
Energy Company Numbers is a telephone number directory service dedicated to helping UK consumers keep in touch with their energy suppliers.

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