Purchase a door draft stopper (view example on Amazon)—or make your own. No more complicated than it needs to be, a "door snake" prevents warm air from escaping (and cold air from entering) your home. Note that similar solutions exist for windows (Amazon). The advantage of DIYing? Well, for one thing, it's easy and cheap to do. You can even dedicate old linens or socks for the purpose! In addition, creating your own means you can make sure the size of the stopper perfectly matches its placement.
Install interior storm windows. Typically made of either plexiglass or acrylic, inserts like these fit right into existing window frames and dramatically increase insulation at relatively low cost (compared to window replacement). Another benefit: Unlike traditional, exterior storm windows, inserts like these do nothing to compromise the look of your home's exterior.
Modern Shrinky Dinks
Online and off, most home improvement stores stock plastic shrink film insulation kits. The longstanding favorite even sells on Amazon.com (and at a steep discount). Like other similar products, the 3M Indoor Window Insulator Kit (view on Amazon) includes all you need to apply insulating film over as many as five standard windows. Double-sided tape holds the film in place until the last step in the quick and easy installation process, when you use a hair dryer to shrink the film in order to achieve an air-tight seal.
Close the Gaps
Repair, replace, or add weatherstripping around drafty windows and doors. Duck Brand Heavy-Duty Self Adhesive Weatherstrip Seal works well, costs little, and comes in various sizes (view on Amazon). Plus, its rubber construction provides the utmost draft protection. That said, there are many types of weatherstripping worth considering—felt weatherstripping (sold in sheets), V-seal weatherstripping (sold in both plastic and spring-metal versions), and expanding spray foam weatherstripping (sold in aerosol cans).
Caulk Those Cracks!
Window caulking serves as a first line of defense against cold air. Unfortunately, caulk degrades over time, inevitably developing small cracks and gaps that allow in cold air. Inspect your drafty windows, checking around the window frame for any signs of failure. Small openings may be repaired with inexpensive, user-friendly rope caulk. Larger openings, meanwhile, necessitate the complete removal and replacement of the original, no-longer-viable caulk.
In a pinch? It's nothing more than a temporary solution, but if you need a fix and you need it now, consider using bubble wrap to seal the window. Bubble wrap sells by the roll. If you have some on hand already, simply cut it to size and use double-sided tape to keep the plastic in place.
Winterize Your Windows
Pay attention to your windows, and stay warm this winter!
Sign up today to get crucial reminders and good-to-know tips for maintaining and improving your home!