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Old 10-25-2001, 01:43 PM
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Did a search on this subject and found zilch...

Last spring the lovely Mrs. Constant and I bought a beautiful but drafty old house. Now that winter if fast approaching, I need to winterize this house as best I can (we are renovating, but we can only do so much at a time). I've been patching holes in the brick, re-insulating the attic and basically making the house as tight as possible. This brings me to the windows. The house has old, inefficient, aluminum casement type windows. Replacing them is not an option, at least not now, but I have found this plastic (saran wrap type) "shrink and seal" sheets in the local hardware store. You tape these sheets over your window and shrink it with a hair dryer.

Does this actually work? How well? My windows are not necessary drafty (they seem to seal relatively well), but they do seem to let a lot of heat out of the house. Should I bother putting this stuff up?

Thanks in advance!
Old 10-25-2001, 01:50 PM
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I have used this stuff in the past and it does work. All it does is create a layer of still air in front of the glass which acts as insulation. For it to work though make sure you are not getting draughts round the actual window frame . If there are gaps around the frames you will not get that layer of still air.
Old 10-25-2001, 01:51 PM
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The stuff is really designed for windows that leak, but because your windows are tight, you may get a greenhouse effect between the glass and plastic that would set up a nice thermal layer, at least during daylight.
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Old 10-25-2001, 03:06 PM
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They work. You should also caulk any gaps on the window itself for maximum effct.
Old 10-25-2001, 03:41 PM
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Yup, they work very well. After you shrink the plastic, you can actually see it buldging in and out from the pressure of the draft. You will notice the difference in comfort level immediately.
Old 10-25-2001, 04:09 PM
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Yep, it works like a dream. We used it for years when we were renting apartments in Astoria, Queens, NYC. A few hints.

1. Make sure you have plotted where the double-sided cellophane tape will go. After you figure that out, take a cloth and wash VERY THOROUGHLY the surfaces involved. Frequently these surfaces are near a cold draft ( go figure !!). Make sure they are totally cleaned of soaps, and dry before you proceed.

2. Have a hair dryer on hand. The instructions call for it, but even before you use it on the thin plastic sheet, it's helpful to use it to totally dry out the wall area where that double stick tape will go. I've waste a few kits by having the double stick tape NOT adhere properly, trust me on this one.

3. Don't try to apply the double stick, OR the plastic alone. It's a two person job. The tape will lay down in a nice straight line, and the plastic will apply smoother if you have two people working the materials. ( It's been 9 years at least, so if the instructions recomment two people, I apologize ).

4. Check after to see that it's really stuck all the way around. As mentioned above, if you have created a good seal, you'll see it bow in and out with the pressure. Caulk is your friend, I never met a landlord who gave me agita at all over my attempts to insulate HIS property better than he already had.

Have a nice toasty-oasty winter !

Cartooniverse
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Old 10-25-2001, 11:36 PM
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Thanks to all for the info! It looks like I have my project for the week.
Old 10-26-2001, 12:22 AM
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Quote:
Everything Cartooniverse said!
And yes, the stuffs always worked great for me too.
Old 10-26-2001, 12:23 AM
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Does anyone have a brand name or a website for this stuff? It sounds like something I need to get shipped over to China.
Old 10-26-2001, 05:24 AM
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Try this company

Quote:
Originally posted by China Guy
Does anyone have a brand name or a website for this stuff? It sounds like something I need to get shipped over to China.
.
In the UK itis marketed by a company called Polycell. This company makes a whole range of DIY and home inprovement products. Try to see if they have a web site. They might be able to ship it to you maybe even via Hong Kong.
Old 10-26-2001, 06:23 AM
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Just another voice charming in: I used this stuff one winter in a drafty apartment in Pittsburgh, and it definitely works. Not as well as proper storm windows, but it's a great solution if you're renting or if storm windows just aren't in the budget yet. Our heating bills were substantially lower than they were the winter we didn't do this, and the apartment was much more comfortable.
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Old 10-26-2001, 07:23 AM
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China Guy,
I've used the 3M brand in the past and it's worked well.
This link may help you find out more about it:
http://3m.com/product/index_I/index_I_62.html
Old 10-26-2001, 09:22 AM
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I second the recommendation of 3M. Avoid the Frost King brand unless it's all you can find - it's pretty low quality.

There also used to be (and may still be) a different product from 3M meant for the outside of the windows (no heat shrink, though; it was just tougher plastic). So if you use both you could in effect have a double-sealed window.
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