The days are getting longer, and the temperatures are creeping up. It will be time to turn on the AC before we know it.
Now is a great time to assess the efficiency of your windows in maintaining a comfortable indoor temperature. Drafty windows, thin glass, and insufficient window treatments make it easier for the stifling summer heat to find its way into your home, making your AC work that much harder and increasing your energy bill.
You can insulate windows for summer in multiple ways. Some methods are more effective—and expensive than others. Let’s review the most common insulation options so you can pick the treatments that work for you.
How to Insulate Windows to Keep Heat Out
Here’s how to insulate windows to keep your home cool through the summer. These six solutions are roughly ordered from least expensive to most expensive. Bear in mind that the best window insulation for summer entails a combination of the options described below.
1. Use a draft snake.
If your windows have an imperfect seal, a draft snake or stop is a quick, inexpensive solution. A draft snake is just a few dollars, and it’s readily available online and in hardware and home goods stores. There’s no installation to speak of. Simply wedge the snake where the window sash meets the sill.
Draft snakes have their uses, but they can be a bit bulky to place on a window. They also do nothing to prevent drafts that might come from the top or sides of a window’s framing.
2. Apply weather stripping.
Just like a draft snake, weather stripping can limit the exchange of air through a drafty window. Weather stripping is a little less conspicuous, though, and you can apply it to the entire perimeter of a window.
Weather stripping is inexpensive and easy to apply. Simply measure an appropriate length of stripping, peel back the covering to expose the adhesive, and apply firmly to your window framing. You can remove weather stripping whenever you like, so it’s a great way to insulate apartment windows.
3. Apply reflective window film.
Draft snakes and weather stripping won’t stop the hot summer sun from warming your home. If your windows get a lot of sun, you can apply a thin film to reflect sunlight. Some inexpensive film is made for any homeowner to install. Other kinds of higher-grade film must be installed by a professional.
Reflective film is good at keeping a home cool in the summer, but some homeowners don’t find it to be aesthetically pleasing. For this reason, reflective film is sometimes more common on office buildings and storefronts.
4. Hang blackout curtains.
Blackout curtains are made of thick fabric that is especially effective in blocking light and, by extension, heat. Think of the curtains you might see in a hotel room.
Blackout curtains tend to be heavy, so they might require stronger mounting brackets, but they are otherwise no harder to install than any other kind of curtain. Some people find blackout curtains to be a little too effective, however. They can completely darken a room in the middle of the day, which some people find disorienting. You might want to mitigate the heat from the summer sun, but not at the expense of losing all the natural light in your home.
5. Install cellular, honeycomb, or solar blinds.
Cellular, honeycomb, and solar blinds are elegant, attractive, and can trap or reflect the sun’s heat while still allowing some ambient light to pass through. They’re a wonderful way of keeping your home cool and comfortable, but quality blinds can be expensive. The costs add up when you consider professional installation.
6. Replace your windows.
Finally, you can make your home more energy efficient by replacing your windows entirely. Thermal, double-paned, or heat-proof windows are more than twice as effective as standard glass when it comes to keeping your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Most models use two panes of glass with insulating argon gas sealed between them.
The downside is that replacing your windows is quite expensive. The argon between the panes escapes slowly over time, too, so you may need to replace these windows again in about 20 years.
Keep Cool with a Home Warranty
Throughout most of the US, even the most expensive window treatments won’t prevent your home from becoming excessively hot or cold on occasion. We need our heating and cooling systems to achieve the modern standard of comfortable indoor temperatures.
Consider protecting the integrity of your climate control systems with a home warranty. A policy from Liberty Home Guard will allow you to affordably maintain and repair any home system or appliance. Call (866)-902-1622 to learn more.