About our DIY window Insulation kits
DIY window insulation acts like double glazing but is much more affordable than permanent glazing. It may be a good solution if permanent double glazing is not an option.
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What is DIY window insulation?
DIY window insulation consists of a thin, clear plastic film taped to the inside of your window frame but not on the glass itself. It reduces condensation and heat loss by acting as double glazing. The film is easy to install and the only thing needed is a pair of scissors and a hair dryer to shrink it so it looks tidy.
For which frames is it suitable?
DIY window insulation can be used on wooden and aluminium frames. It is not recommended for use on plaster, drywall/wallboard, unfinished/unvarnished wood or frames with a flaking paint surface. It is most effective when the window frame is 10 - 20mm thick. When installed on wooden frames in the middle of winter, condensation from the wet wooden frames may form between the plastic and the glass pane. This will not affect the effectiveness but may be unsightly and we recommend it is installed before winter.
What does a DIY window insulation kit consist of?
The pack contains clear plastic film, double sided tape and instructions on how to install the window insulation. CEA recommends you buy extra tape.
How long does it last for and how do I remove it?
The DIY window insulation kit is meant to last for one heating season but anecdotal evidence has shown it can remain intact for several years. It is best removed with adhesive remover to avoid any damage to the paint on the window frame or the frame itself.
Can I clean my window after installation?
As long as the insulation is up you will not be able to clean the inside of the pane so make sure that is cleaned before you put the insulation up and make sure the room is clean and dust-free when you are installing it. CEA has trialed cleaning the plastic with a soft cloth and window cleaner and there have not been any adverse effects after 4 weeks.
What do you need?
Installing plastic window kits is easy. All you need is a pair of scissors, a hair dryer and a measuring tape. You may want to purchase extra tape over above what is supplied in the packet. The tape sold at Community Energy Action will give you good adhesive results.
Preparation of your windows
|1||Make sure your windows and window frame are clean and dry. Clean your windows and the frame with the alcohol swabs provided in the kit and wait for the frame and pane to dry before applying the film. A hair dryer can help to dry out the frame and the pane before installation.|
|2||It is especially important for wooden frames to be dry before attaching the tape and film. When installed on wooden window frames during winter or during damp weather, there is a chance condensation may get trapped between the pane and the film. This will not affect the effectiveness of the film but may be unsightly. You may wish to use a hair dryer to dry out the frame and glass. This will also help the adhesive to stick better.|
For a tidier end result, you may want to remove hardware (handles and catches) before putting up the insulation, putting it back on after attaching the film.
Cutting of the window insulation
Make sure your hands are very clean and dry. Roll out the film and cut it on a hair and lint-free surface, otherwise you may trap annoying hairs in the internal gap.
|2||Cut more than the actual size of the window. It is easier to trim excess film once up than to try and cut the exact size. Make sure the excess film border is several centimeters wide so there will be enough film to re-attach if for any reason the film becomes unstuck and needs to be put up a second time.|
Putting up the window insulation
Stick the tape around the front face of the internal window frame.
|2||Attach the cut plastic loosely to the tape, then trim edges to make it look nice and tidy.|
Shrink the film with a hair dryer until any wrinkles disappear. Do not leave the hair dryer in one place too long or the plastic will melt.
If the film doesn't stick well to the tape use a hair dryer to warm the tape while lightly pressing on the tape surface. This improves the adhesion of the film to the tape.
Avoid over-tightening of the film when you are shrinking it. It will not stick to the double-sided tape easily if the tension is too high.
Extra double-sided tape is available from Community Energy Action.
Removing the window insulation
Pull off the plastic film starting at a corner.
|2||The tape may come off with the film. If not, pull the tape back on itself (180°)|
Any residue adhesive can be removed with Duck Brand Adhesive Remover, also available from Community Energy Action. Let the remover soak for five to ten minutes before removing residues.
- DIY window insulation can be a good solution to reduce condensation and heat loss through windows. However, caution is advised in the following instances:
- DIY window insulation may not be suitable in households where little children, pets, etc. may easily damage the film.
Installation on wooden frames in the middle of winter when frames are damp may result in condensation being trapped between the film and the pane. This will not affect the effectiveness of the insulation but may be unsightly.
- When installing on aluminium frames (that are not thermally bridged), some condensation may form on the frame on very cold nights.
- The distortion of light through the film is generally minimal but where high-quality views are treasured it may distract from the viewing pleasure.
- If the pane is cracked, the frame is poorly joined or otherwise air tightness is not achieved when applying the film, DIY window insulation will not be able to insulate properly.
- When applied to frames with flaking paint or otherwise poorly painted surfaces, it may damage the frame on removal.
- The tape of the DIY window insulation may leave a light stain when left on for longer periods than one heating season.
- On frames less than 5mm deep there may not be enough air trapped in between the glass pane and the window film for the
- DIY window insulation to insulate the window effectively.
- As all plastic film and bags, DIY window insulation can cause suffocation. Keep out of reach of children and pets.