There’s nothing more annoying than being snuggled up in your home on a cold, windy day and feeling a terrible draft entering your space. Drafts enter homes through windows, doors, fireplaces and even electrical vents and can make your home feel much colder than it is, giving you the shivers and causing you to crank up your heating. With the potential energy savings from reducing drafts ranging from 5% to 30%, a year a drafty home is definitely something you should consider seeing to. So here’s how to beat them before winter truly sets in.
Check your windows
Your windows are perhaps the most likely culprit for letting in the drafts you feel in your home. As windows age, they tend to start making gaps which unless filled easily allow air to get in. If you have drafty windows here are some things to try.
- Locking them
Locking your windows ensures that they are shut tight and could be all you need to do to stop those pesky drafts. If you find that you can’t lock your windows then they may have come off of their tracks, so try opening it all the way before shutting it again and then retry locking it. If your windows still won’t lock then you have a serious security issue and may wish to consider having them seen to by the Anderson Everett Window specialists.
- Using a decorative draft stopper
If DIY isn’t your strong point then you could help reduce the severity of your drafts by using a decorative draft stopper which simply sits on the gap blocking the airflow. This isn’t a great long term solution though, so consider getting it seen to properly especially if the draft is bad.
- Re-caulk them
Caulking can help to seal up gaps eliminating drafts but it can also be a fairly difficult procedure to do if you haven’t used a caulking gun before. Your best bet is to try a high-quality silicone-based caulk that cleans up with water which makes it easy to correct any errors.
- Install insulating plastic film
If you have an old house with old windows then you may be battling a draft battle you can’t win and your best bet is to add a second barrier in the form of an insulating plastic film. These can sit flush over your windows blocking any cold air that makes its way through the gaps in your windows from entering your warm home.
Check your doors
After your windows, your doors come in as the next most likely culprit for drafts entering your home. Check to see if there are any obvious gaps around your door paying extra attention to the bottom where rotting can occur leaving holes. If you find that your door does have gaps then consider purchasing some door draft excluders or seals which can be placed all around the door blocking up any gaps and stopping cold air from entering. You can also buy a decorative draft excluder for the base of your door to give a little added draft protection. If you find that your door is very drafty then it may not be fitted properly and you may wish to consider purchasing a new door which better fills the space.
Do you have a fireplace?
If you have a fireplace in your house then it may be the cause of your ruined cosy factor. Most chimneys have dampeners installed inside them to keep the hot air in and the cold our out so check to see if your dampener has any gaps or has slipped allowing a draft to get in. You may even find that you don’t have a dampener at all which would make your home very cold. You may also want to consider insulating your dampener with foam as dampeners are typically made out of cast iron which doesn’t entirely keep the cold away.
Check your electrical sockets
Contractors tend to under insulate wall sockets forming a sort of wind tunnel into your home from the wall cavity. Take the electrical wall plate off and see if there is a gap, if there is then you can simply fill it with expanding foam before returning the wall plate.
Insulate your floors
If at times it feels as though the drafts in your home are coming at you from all angles then they probably are! Your floors, especially if you have a basement, can be the perfect place for drafts to get in. To fix this consider adding floor insulation or carpeting your floors to block drafts from entering.