How to Block Draft from Windows

Updated on November 14, 2010
K.W. asks from Pittsburgh, PA
8 answers

Hi moms, we cannot afford new windows right now. Besides the plastic that you put over the windows to block the draft of cold air, do you have any other suggestions? It's getting cold and I need to warm this house. Thanks so much your time and input!

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answers from Philadelphia on

Great suggestions so far...I'd add that we use old towels stuffed into the gap in the bottom of the windows, which helps greatly. I spent $ on those draft stoppers, which are just 2 styrofoam logs sewn inside a thin piece of fabric and are meant to go under a door. Old towels got the areas that caulk or weatherstripping didn't get. You can get old towels at any thrift store if you don't have any lying around the house.

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answers from Tulsa on

We went to Lowes and bought large, 4'x8' sheets of Styrofoam with silver foil on each side. We cut it with a utility knife to fit the windows and they can be slipped in and out anytime. We also have it in our backdoor frame. It keeps all the extra breeze out. Each sheet is well under $10.00 and they do come in much larger sizes.

They have Perma "R" printed on them and pictures of Penguins.

My personal thoughts on sealing the windows are that if there is an emergency where the kids need out or fire fighters need in they better be able to push through whatever is covering a window so they can save the people inside from a miserable death.

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answers from Toledo on

You can buy weather stripping by the roll to go in the tracks around the windows and doors. Look to see what width you need, and replace it. It's super easy. Just pull the old out, and stick the new in--it's sticky on one side and fuzzy on the other, and comes in different widths and thicknesses.

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answers from Anchorage on

The plastic does work well. We tried this putty looking weather stripping that you push in the cracks that worked ok, and of course heavy curtains help, but if you want light than the plastic is the best thing we have found for our extreme Alaskan winters.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Erie on

It depends on how long you plan to keep your current windows, how much work you want to do each season, and the current state of your windows. We knew it was going to be years until we replaced our windows, so we did a couple of things -- had the ones we use reglazed and got storm windows for the ones that we don't open. Both of these things helped much more than I expected. They cost more than plastic or caulking but we don't need to do anything again until we're ready to replace the windows. Hope this helps...

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answers from San Francisco on

Heavy curtains are an old standby.

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answers from Washington DC on

Use painter's caulk around the outside of the wood trim. This might help.

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answers from Harrisburg on

Caulking, thick sticky insulation along the cracks like you can use on doors. I've seen some even use thin plexiglas over the worst windows on the outside and drill them on the frame. Then remove them when the temps rise.

You can also use insulation on each of your outlets, even the ones that are on inside walls. They are foam pieces that fit behind your outlets. Just remove the outlet plates, place the foam pieces in and replace the outlet covers.

Also, put snug fitting child proof covers on all unused outlets. You'd be surprised how much air comes through those outlets.

Keep the heat turned down a notch or two and use a space heater in the main room you're using, on low. Use small space heaters in each bedroom on low at night and turn the heat down.

Use blinds and/or lined drapes on windows to keep the drafts down. These help in summer too to keep the heat out.

Insulate your doors as well.

Use rugs where you can to avoid chilly floors.

Put socks on the kids feet at night. Try using sweat shirts/pants as pajama tops/bottoms, especially if the kids kick their blankets off during the night.

Go online and research tips on saving energy and keeping the home warmer.

K. B
mom to 5 including triplets
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