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Last year, storms caused $22 billion in damage in the USA.
Windows are an integral part of keeping the elements out of your home. But if you haven’t prepared them and given them a helping hand they can’t do their job.
Read on for our expert tips and tricks for weatherproofing windows.
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Prepare Your Windows
Before you can do anything, give your windows a proper clean. Inside and out. Use window cleaner and lint-free cloths for the best results.
Inspect any wooden frames too for signs of wear or rot. You’ll want to replace them if they need them before the weather turns. If your UPVC windows are getting on in life, make sure to check them too.
Look for any cracks or chips in the glass. If there is, you’ll need to replace the whole pane. Although these checks can be time-consuming, they could save you a lot more time (and money) later.
With clean windows in top condition, you can start weatherproofing. The first step is to use weatherstripping. For ease of installation, you can use a self-adhesive variety.
This fits around the window seams to stop as much air transfer as possible from inside and out. Adding this for winter means that you won’t be able to open your windows. But, if you have central heating and temperatures drop, it’s unlikely you’ll need to.
Once you get your weatherstripping, go around and apply it to every window (even the ones in the basement). It can only do so much though. If you don’t have double-paned windows, you’ll need to do more to help them through the weather.
Caulk is a flexible material that seals cracks, gaps, and joints to prevent air leaks. It’s suited to sealing these up on stationary building materials and components. Weatherstripping is for components that move.
So, you’d use weatherstripping on door and window openings and caulk where the frame joins to the wall if needed.
For the best adhesion clean all areas that need caulking first.
Take away any old caulk and paint. You can use a putty knife, stiff brush, or screwdriver. Or there are special solvents you can get. Then dry the area completely.
Then apply the caulk to all the joints in the window frame and the joints between the frame and the wall. Hold the gun at a consistent, 45-degree angle. You’ll know you got it right when the caulk pushes straight into the crack from leaving the tube.
Apply in one straight continuous stream where possible. Don’t stop-start it. And make sure to get it right into the bottom of the opening so you avoid air bubbles. Also, make sure it sticks to both sides of the seam.
Release the trigger before you pull the gun away. This makes sure you avoid applying too much caulk. If your gun has an automatic release, this makes it easier.
If the caulk oozes out of the opening, use a putty knife to push it back down. Don’t be stingy. If the caulk shrinks upon drying, use another coat to seal it completely.
You should do your caulking when the temperature is over 45°F for the best results. Low humidity is essential as it will prevent cracking if the caulk swells with moisture. Warmer temperatures will also help the caulk set and dry properly for a better seal.
Apply a Window Film
Breakages can come from accidents but also the weather. From car bonnets to roofs to windows, hail can cause chipping, cracking, and denting. So, while there are plenty of hail dent repair options, you can also help prevent it.
If it breaks, glass can be dangerous for all the family. Glazing if it isn’t toughened or laminated is at more risk of breaking.
Applying a breakage film will help prevent the dangers of shattered glass.
A safety film will upgrade your glass to meet safety standards with quick, ease. It’ll make it harder to break and if it does, it’ll break in a safe way.
You can get safety films in a variety of thicknesses and finishes. The most popular is completely clear that doesn’t alter the appearance or quality of the view.
Once you apply it, the film adds another barrier to the glass. If the glass breaks, this film catches it and holds it in place, not allowing it to fall. This means there are no jagged pieces in the frame or on the floor to cause harm or injury.
Use Other Storm Protection Solutions like Shutters
One way to sure up your storm protection measures is to double up. You can help out your weatherproof glass more with a second barrier, like panels or shutters.
There are different varieties of shutters to choose from. A good choice is the Accordion style which is attractive and affordable.
You can also install interior storm windows. These are often made of plexiglass or acrylic and fits into the existing window frame.
Not only does it provide extra protection, but it’ll also improve insulation. Another plus point is this option doesn’t change the exterior appeal of your home.
Hang Insulated Curtains
As well as storm damage, the bad weather also brings a drop in temperature. And with it, an increase in heat loss in our homes. Thermal curtains are a great option for reducing heat loss during colder months.
You might not get as much light but you’ll stay warm and toastie (and you’ll save money too!). On a side note, thermal curtains are great for summer too. They’ll keep out the worst of the sun’s heat.
Weatherproofing Windows Made Easy
So, there you have it! With our expert tips for weatherproofing windows, you won’t be caught out in the cold.
Make sure your windows are clean and in top shape going into the stormy season. Seal any gaps or cracks and add a safety film for extra protection. shutters and curtains will also add a helpful boost to your windows’ performance too.
If you found this article useful, check out our other blog posts for more tips and tricks.