How to Prepare Your Windows for the Winter

February 16, 2023

In Canada, energy prices have increased by 100%. To keep utility prices down, homeowners are investing in energy-efficient technology, such as high-efficiency heating systems and LED lights. Another way to curb energy costs is to minimize the use of high-voltage machinery, as your heating systems have to run extra long to compensate for the cold air entering the house through poorly conditioned windows and doors.

Properly insulating your house to enhance temperature control is also essential in winter. You must blow cellulose into walls and add door sweeps for insulation. Since windows have gaps and are thinner than walls and less insulating than wood, you need to prepare them adequately to face the winters. Here is how you should do so to minimize your energy consumption.

Clean Your Windows Regularly

Strong winds and turbulent weather cause debris like leaves and stones to get stuck in the window’s edges, leading to gaps forming in the frame that allow cold air to enter. Water pollutants constantly attacking the window glass corners weaken it, leaving it susceptible to crack-formation due to contraction in the winter.

You should regularly clean your window glass with an ammonia-based cleaner and use a hand vacuum and brush to remove debris. Consider adding a fiberglass window screen to the window’s outside to prevent debris from getting lodged into crevices.

Replace Old Weatherstripping

Old weatherstripping leaves gaps between the window glass and frame, allowing cold air to enter your home, so you must replace your weatherstripping every few years. You can attach a thin tissue around the window’s frame to check if you require new weatherstripping. If it continuously moves, then chances are that the weather stripping is not working. Weatherstripping comes in many forms; for example, foam tape that’s cheap and easy to install. However, foam wears out quickly, so limit them to areas that don’t get exposed to winds and rain.

Like foam tape, felt tape is also easy to install, but its durability lasts up to a few years. However, felt is visible after installation and compromises on visual appeal. If exposed to rain, the felt soaks up water and fosters mold. The best and most popular weatherstripping is caulk. It comes in liquid form, which you add throughout the window’s corners and other gaps. It reacts with air to become a hard sealant. Remember to scrape off the old caulk before adding the new one.

Consider adding a draft snake if the caulk is inadequate to stop cold air from entering; you can make one yourself using old foam and cloth. Adding it to window sashes and underneath doors will help keep your home warm.

Replace Windows

Old houses often have thin single-pane windows that don’t insulate and cold air to enter despite weatherstripping. Consider replacing them with double-pane windows to enhance your home’s insulation, as those have two sheets of glass, providing extra reinforcement against harsh climates. They can be thick or thin, depending on the gap between the glass sheets.

If your window’s frame is in good shape, then you can save money by only replacing the glass. Hiring a window installation company is the safest way to ensure risk-free installation. However, if you decide to DIY the installation, you can follow this guide for replacing your home windows and doors safely.

Install Storm Windows

Storm windows perform the same function as double-pane windows but are cheaper to install. You don’t have to replace your original window to install them; instead, a separate window is attached to the outside of the existing one. Aside from keeping cold air out, storm windows help protect your original window from debris blown by winds and decrease the intensity of UV rays entering your home. Home sellers usually attach storm windows as a quick and cost-effective way to increase the value of their houses.

Note that not all storm windows can be opened, as windows that aren’t sealed shut are not as efficient in providing weather protection. You must also continuously ensure debris does not get caught in them and that they have adequate weatherstripping.

Hang Thermal Drapes

Hanging thermal drapes can reduce your heating energy consumption by 10%. They have a layer of acrylic foam between three layers of fabric, providing excellent insulation. You can couple thermal drapes with blinds and screens to further protect your interior from cold air. They’re also readily available in various colors and patterns, so your interior design won’t get compromised. Aside from the winters, thermal drapes are helpful in summer, too, as they help keep the cold air-conditioned air inside and prevent warmth from entering through your windows.


As energy prices continue to rise, you should ensure your home is energy efficient and can remain warm and cozy in winter. Windows and doors are the primary sources of cold air entering your home. You must adequately prepare them for the cold season by cleaning them, replacing their weather stripping, or installing storm windows. You can also replace them and add thermal drapes to enhance their insulation efficiency. These small investments can drastically lower your energy bill and prove cost-effective in the long run.


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Carlos Diaz
I believe in making the impossible possible because there’s no fun in giving up. Travel, design, fashion and current trends in the field of industrial construction are topics that I enjoy writing about.

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