If you have an old house, you probably have storm windows. Because older homes were made using single pane windows, they usually had a corresponding set of storm windows, an extra window you install in the autumn to provide another layer of protection from the cold.
And with the summer weather behind us and cool, autumn weather here to stay, it’s almost time to install them.
Over time, wear can make your storm windows less effective at keeping out the cold, so here are 4 tips to improve the efficiency of your windows, short of actually replacing your windows with high efficiency options.
1. Caulk your windows
If it’s been a few years since you caulked the windows of your home, now is the perfect time to remedy that. Carefully strip off the old caulking of both the permanent and storm windows. Then carefully apply a steady, uniform bead of caulking around the glass’s perimeter, where it meets the window frame. Consider smoothing it with something dull and firm, like an old spoon, a popsicle stick, or a tool made for that purpose.
2. Wash your windows
Wash your window sills and window frames. Extra dirt from the summer can accumulate and prevent the storm windows from sitting properly when installed. Keeping them clean reduces wear and increases the efficiency of the seal.
3. Apply weatherstripping
If you find that even after washing your window frames and sills that there’s still a gap between the sills and frames, install some window weatherstripping. This creates another seal to prevent drafts from getting in. Weatherstripping comes in various sizes, so make sure you get one that is thick enough to work in your gap.
4. Tape it up
In additions to weather stripping, you can install tape over the gaps from the inside. This will be one more way to keep the draft out. Don’t get foam tape though! That’s for your weatherstripping. It will probably be clear or white.
Those are our 4 tips for increasing the energy efficiency of your storm windows. Do you have others? Share in the comments below.