Sealing your windows before the winter season is integral in ensuring maximum energy efficiency in your home. The cracks and gaps around the trims and moldings of your window can cause the warm air in your home to seep out and result in the interior environment becoming colder. Naturally, this would cause many people to crank up the heater to compensate for the lack of warmth in the home. As a result, this would drive your electrical and utility costs up and increase your carbon footprint. Caulking is one of the most effective ways you can protect your home during the cold winter season while saving you from burning a hole in your pocket due to the heating bills.
Inspect for Any Leaks
When preparing for the cold window months ahead, inspect around the trims and moldings of the windows and observe for any noticeable gaps and cracks that could be causing drafts. Identify where the drafts are and invest in a sealant to fix the more noticeable and urgent problems. If you aren’t sure what to look out for, consider hiring an inspector or energy auditor can be really helpful in locating where the root issue is and making the necessary recommendations on how to seal your windows effectively.
While an energy audit is ideal, it may not be affordable or accessible for everyone. Therefore, you can choose to do it yourself by using a thermometer or temperature sensor and going room to room to see if there might be a disparity in the temperatures of the different areas. You can start by drawing up a floor plan and locating all the cold spots and drafts in the home that you have to address first before the winter season gets colder.
Solve The More Urgent Issues First
Professionals often tout caulking as the first layer of defense against drafts. However, you should always tackle the more prominent issues first and prioritize them as a rule of thumb. The cracks around the interior trim and the exterior perimeters of the window are known for being the more problematic areas traditionally known to cause drafts. Therefore, caulking with a sealant designed for cold conditions is vital in preventing snow from entering the cracks. As the weather starts to warm during the Spring season, the snow would thaw, and the moisture trapped in the cracks will likely trigger mold and bacteria growth. However, if you are in a time crunch and consider not using the window during the winter, you can purchase a removable caulk for convenience.
Find Long-Term Answers
When looking at long-term solutions, you will need to consider the type of caulk you are using. Polyurethane caulk and silicone caulk are two of the most versatile, durable, and cost-effective solutions that offer you longevity and years of service. Both are relatively UV-stable and have high resistance to moisture, shrinkage, and wear and tear, promising a lifespan of up to a decade. Alternatively, you can also choose to reinforce and insulate your windows by filling the trims and perimeters with spray foam for a more permanent sealing solution.