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Improve Energy Efficiency by Weatherizing the Windows

weatherizing the windowsAs you prepare your home for summer, a comprehensive approach will result in the most savings. The attic, walls and floor of the home’s envelope use insulation to help block heat transfer. However, in order to maximize comfort and energy efficiency in your Fairfax home, determining if weatherizing the windows is necessary, is very important.The windows are perhaps the most vulnerable element of your home’s envelope.

Sealing Leaky Windows

Leaky windows are common. Over time, glazing putty may become very dry and fall away from older windows. Sashes may also dry and shrink on wood windows. Gaskets and weatherstripping may wear with vinyl and aluminum windows. All these issues can cause rattling windows and air leaks.

Adding caulk and weatherstripping are practical ways to seal windows, and it can be a weekend project that isn’t too complex. For drafty windows with obvious leaks, it is best to seal the entire frame and sashes. Use a smoke pencil to locate air leaks with remaining windows, and don’t forget sliding doors and entry doors with glass.

Practical Window Treatments

After you have sealed your windows, consider your options for window treatments:

  • Insulated curtains – Sun-facing windows would benefit from insulated curtains. This is a practical upgrade for substantial energy-efficiency improvements.

  • Shades – Honeycomb shades help block heat gain/loss using cells. The air in the cells actually inhibits heat transfer.

  • Solar shades – Solar shades cut down on glare and block direct sunlight.

  • Blinds – Blinds may be installed against the window or inside a double-paned window.

  • Film – Window films work well to block solar heat gain, but they can also obscure views, depending on the tint.

  • Shutters – Shutters offer privacy and add another layer of security.>

  • Awnings: By blocking the sunlight entering the home, awnings can significantly reduce heat gain as well.

Learn more about improving energy efficiency in your Fairfax area home, as well as about Brennan’s Heating & Air Conditioning’s  HVAC services, by calling (703) 491-2771 to speak with a specialist!

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