Window Insulating Film for Winter: Makes Sense?

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Hey All,

 

I was considering to get some insulating film for the windows (link at the end) and thought someone of you maybe has some experience. 

 

In my case it's older wooden windows frames, albeit not decrepit old and with two glass panes.

In one room the window is very big, like 2.6x1.3 meters (doubt the film would even hold properly tense there). 

 

For sure it would save some energy, but the question is if it makes it worthwhile the time and would even recoup the costs?

 

 

LINK

 

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You need to check your url in the link. You have it bringing me back to this page.

 

Anyway, if it's the stuff I used in the Wisconsin winters where temps regularly stayed below 0 Fahrenheit, then it is worth it as you are going to have a really cold winter. We had old wooden window frames and drafts were always a problem. I put the plastic over the windows using a hair dryer to shrink it tight and you couldn't really tell it was there by looking at it. I also had a large window like you described and I just used two sheets of the stuff and rigged up something in the center to seal it all together.  It did bring the bills down some, but the real reason was because it was so brutally cold sometimes and the shrink wrapped windows kept things nice and cozy.  Almost everyone I knew used the stuff, but here in Germany sometimes the winters are so mild - they're certainly not like Wisconsin winters - I don't really think it is worth the trouble. If we get hit hard like back in 2004 (iirc) then you might consider it.

 

 

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I would say it is better to invest in better quality curtains with a thermal layer. Plastic does not really have a thermal U-value like double glazed windows or secondary glazing. You will still get condensation and i doubt you will save as much money on heating as decent curtains. I work with insulation and in construction, thats my opinion :)

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Well, that sounds like a valid opinion then :D .

I'm curious and surprised about the curtains though, my idea was that they were useless because the cold is already "inside" once they reach them?

 

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When we moved into our old house, the biggest problem was that the window frames were no longer airtight.  A friend helped us by putting sealant round the frames, and that made a huge difference.  

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The claim appears to be that it's like adding an additional pane of glass, so in your case it would be like upgrading your double pane windows to triple. However your energy savings are really going to depend on the condition of the current window; for instance if you get fogging in between the panes, or condensation on the inside, it probably means the original window system has lost some of it's insulating value. Also ,if you have air leaks around the outside of the window frame, this product doesn't fix that. I would tend to agree with Billy M. that heavy drapes would probably be more effective, assuming you can mount them in such a way that you cover the entire window assembly & can keep, within reason, your heated inside air from getting behind them...I'm always amused when I see floor to ceiling drapes installed on windows that have a radiator mounted beneath the windows. 

     

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Whilst heavy curtains will certainly make a difference to heating costs, they are a devil during daytime, when you actually want to let in as much light and whatever heat the sun can give.

Thus, I would combine the two - an extra layer on the window, so that I can still see out, but be more insulated, and then thick, heavy curtains for as soon as the sun goes down.

You might also want to consider putting a layer of tin foil behind your radiators to prevent heat loss through the walls.

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Oh wow, great tips guys (yeah silly me, wasn't thinking of keeping the heat IN :) ).


Is normal kitchen tin foil enough for reverberating the heat inside? 

 

The windows here never fog or condense and they were opened and cleaned as part of a renovation a few years back, so I suppose they work well there. 

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- go Googling Lux7! there are plenty of tips out there for keeping heating costs down, but to answer your question, yes, it will do the trick!

Of course, if you want the up-market model, you can buy a roll of light foam with a silver side to it, and fix that behind your radiators - not sure if it would actually work any better, but you can find it in DIY stores during autumn.

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When I was younger we lived in a building which had old single glazed windows.  On one of them my dad created a plastic inner window which could clip into place and covered the whole window area.  It was even hinged on one side so you could swing it open to get to the window.  This made a massive difference to the room and it was much warmer.

Condensation was a problem, but you could at open the panel and then open the window.

 

On another window he put plastic sheeting and taped it up.  This helped as well, but obviously obscured the view as the plastic was not clear  (not a problem for this window) and you didn't have access to the window.  In this case it was just really to stop drafts, which is done well.

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23 hours ago, lux7 said:

Oh wow, great tips guys (yeah silly me, wasn't thinking of keeping the heat IN :) ).


Is normal kitchen tin foil enough for reverberating the heat inside? 

 

The windows here never fog or condense and they were opened and cleaned as part of a renovation a few years back, so I suppose they work well there. 

I've found those car windshield sun/snow covers work great behind radiators. The foam backing gives you some insulation and the reflective surface helps reflect the heat into the room. You can also buy rigid insulated reflective panels designed to go behind radiators at Bauhaus and the like, but they can be difficult to install.

cover.jpg

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