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How to Winterize your Windows with Plastic Sheeting Rolls

Posted by Packaging Group on

You may wonder if your windows need to be winterized at all, and what benefit this will have on your heating bill this winter. Every building is unique, so your results and applications may differ as well. Newer windows with double panes of glass trap air between them, and may have fewer drafts than older window panes.

Here's how to tell if you need to winterize your windows with poly sheets:

  1. Visually inspect your windows and seals; look for moving drapes or curtains that could indicate a leak is present that allows a draft to come through the windows. Carefully press on the window panes themselves and check for movement; and look along the edge of each pane to feel for a cracked seal.
  2. Wait until a heavy wind is blowing and feel around the edges of the window. Check to see if you are able to feel the wind.
  3. Lastly, turn the heat on in your home on a cold day. When the house is up to temperature, walk to a window and place your hand within a few inches of the pane to check for a draft change or drop in air temperature near your window.

If you detected a draft or issue in the steps above, then you would benefit from winterizing your windows.

What Winterizing in Plastic Means

  • There are many ways you can winterize your home. Many people use thermal drapes, removable storm windows, and rolls of plastic sheeting to stop heat sinks at doors and windows.
  • Of the three options, poly sheeting is the least expensive and best option available.
  • To winterize your windows in plastic, you need to place a heavy plastic sheet over your windows, taping it tightly to the walls or sill, and use heat to tighten the plastic to a smooth finish.
  • The end result is a window without gaps or drafts, which still allows sunlight to enter and warm the room.

Winterizing Windows with Plastic Wrap

  • Winterizing your windows with plastic is best accomplished with two people. 
  • Within a few hours, you can have all over your windows prepared for winter. 
  • Before beginning, measure your windows and gather the following supplies:
  • Window caulk
  • Caulk gun
  • Weather stripping
  • Plastic sheeting rolls, with sections trimmed to the size of your windows
  • Heavy-duty double sided tape
  • Hair dryer or heat gun


Instructions for applying rolled plastic to your windows:

  1. Peel the backing off of the weather stripping and use it to seal the edges of the windows. Press it firmly along the edge of the glass and sill.
  2. Locate any loose window panes and have your partner push them to reveal the gap. Apply a thin bead of caulk into these cracks and allow the window pane to settle back into place.
  3. Place a row of double sided tape at the top of the window around 1 inch in from the glass.
  4. Stretch the plastic across the top of the window tightly, pressing it onto the tape.
  5. Run a line of tape down the sides of the windowsill, 1 inch from the glass, and a final row of tape across the bottom edge.
  6. Pull the plastic down firmly, smoothing it onto the tape on the sides and across the bottom to seal.
  7. Turn the heat gun on high heat, and aim it at the plastic to shrink it. Move the hair dryer back and forth in across the plastic continuously until the plastic shrinks to a form a tight sheet across your window with no wrinkles or creases. Avoid placing the heat too close to the plastic or you may burn through.

The Packaging group is a leading supplier of plastic sheeting rolls and we carry a variety of polyethylene sheeting rolls that can be used for preparing your home for the upcoming winter months.


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