Here’s a dual purpose post, to show off one of my winterizing steps and the view out of my rear window!
Can you see what I’ve done to the window? No? Me neither, but it is so far making a surprising difference to my comfort level. I applied some shrink-to-fit plastic window insulation over it (this is not the kit I used, but an well-rated comparable product).
I’ve had this kit in my basement since Campbell River, so four years! I never installed it because after I got it home and read the instructions, I realised such a product was incompatible with feline roommates.
A few RVers had told me that they install the kits on the exterior of their windows, but the instructions say to install them on the exterior part of the interior frame. This means that the plastic is not flush against the window, creating an air gap. So not only do the kits cut drafts, they also add genuine R value thanks to the air gap. I don’t know how much, but I felt a veritable difference last night once the plastic was up.
Installation wasn’t as fussy as I expected it to be. You start by applying the double-sided tape all around the frame, using the wax strip over it to press the tape down well before removing the wax strip.
The instructions say to cut the plastic to size, but I didn’t have room to spread it out for measuring and cutting. So I just grabbed one corner and installed that neatly vertically and horizontally, pulling as tight as I could, until the entire window was covered, then I cut away the excess at the side and bottom (and enough to do a couple more windows).
Once the plastic was on, I was a little dismayed as I hadn’t gotten it as taut as I thought I did and there were lots of wrinkles. The idea of looking through that all winter was depressing. But I wasn’t done, there was still one more step to do: shrinking the film with a hair dryer.
I started with the dryer on low and that did nothing. I increased the heat to high and followed the instructions to start at the edges and work my way in. It took a few minutes but I started to hear the plastic stretch as it shrank! It took at least 10 minutes, but steady passes with the hair dryer over the wrinkles turned the flabby plastic into a taut clear skin. I was very impressed.
Next, I did the window behind my desk. This one didn’t do as neat of a job since it’s not a flat plane of glass, but the corner that didn’t smooth out is behind my monitor, so it’s not like I can see it. This exercise was the most valuable since I’ve had to keep the window open 1/4″ to let in the cable for my booster. I had just sealed the gap with tape, but I knew it wouldn’t be enough. I put double-sided tape around the area where the wire comes in and then plastic. I got an air-tight seal, but the plastic isn’t smooth.
I’ve got enough plastic to do the other window in here. I will get another kit to do my living room windows and the one in my toilet room.