Monday, October 24, 2011

Winterizing Windows

Since my house has a couple of sashless windows (essentially single panes of glass that slide along each other) And I can't afford (yet) to replace them, this winter I need to winterize them.  What does this mean? Essentially I'm shrink-wrapping plastic on the frames in order to prevent heat loss and stop (or at least slow down) condensation.

Not having done this before, I spoke first with my brother and sister in law, who also live in an old house with a lot of single paned glass windows to find out how it works. My bother has built frames that tuck into the window structures and these help them keep in the heat and keep out the damp.  I'm not at that particular level of sophistication as yet, so I went to my local hardware/building supply store and bought an RCR Climaloc Shrink to Fit Window Insulator Kit.

The kit includes a giant sheet of uber-thin plastic sheeting and a roll of double-sided sticky tape. Additional tools needed include a hair drier and a pair of scissors.  Today being a good day off for me to tackle installing at least a couple of windows' worth of this, I started in the living room.

Hm.  Minor issue at hand - the windows are a titch grimy and so I actually FIRST needed to clean them. OK.  Window cleaned, I opened the box and then read over the instructions.  Pretty simple:
Step 1 - use hair drier to heat up window frame
Step 2 - attach double sided sticky tape around window frame
Step 3 - wait 20 minutes

It was more like 45 since I decided to have a snack and coffee while I waited.

Step 4 - measure window and cut film to size (allow extra room all the way around to be sure I can stick it all around)
Step 5 - warm up tape with hair drier, pull off non-sticky stuff and position plastic all the way around
Step 6 - reposition to pull out wrinkles and then press firmly into place
Step 7 - use hair drier (from outside to inside) on film to "shrink" to fit.
Step 8 - trim off excess with utility knife.

How hard could this be?

Surprisingly, the biggest challenges I had were first getting the windows clean and streak free and then second actually finding my hair drier!

Two windows have been sealed - one of the living room windows (the smaller of the two) and one of the sashless windows.  The other sashless window is in the laundry room and I will actually need an extension cord in order to use my hair drier in there, so that one has to wait until after the Telus guy shows up to install my jacks (he's now an hour and a half late past the appointment window END time) and I can take a run over to Slegg Lumber to pick up an extension cord and a couple of lamps.

Hopefully the Telus guy will show up soon - Jasmine and I have a walk-date for 4PM this afternoon and I would like, very much, to get the window dealt with before then.  I know I could do it after dark - there's a light in there, but Slegg closes at 5:30...

With love across the waters...

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