windows and doors covered in blanket.

How to Winterize Your Windows & Doors

Winter is here, along with it is an increase in your heating expenses. Are you looking for ways to keep your home warm this winter without spending a fortune? Take the time to check your home's windows and doors – a good place to start is your home’s main entry points.

Find Drafts in Your Home

Drafts are a killer on your home’s energy bill. If your home has drafty windows and doors then you’ll see a substantial increase in your energy bill every month. As cool air sneaks into your home, your furnace will be working twice as hard to keep your house warm, which can significantly reduce the life of your furnace. How can you determine if your home has drafts? Take a candle and place it near a window or door. If you see the flame dancing or flickering, it's likely a draft is getting through the window or door. If this occurs, you’ll need to do some extra work to prepare your windows and doors for the winter.

Block Drafts

Your local hardware store will have draft snakes to place at the bottom of your windows and doors. Draft snakes are effective in preventing warm air from escaping and cold air from entering your home. If you’re on a budget, try this do-it-yourself option instead: Roll up several old towels and tie elastics at each end to keep them in their tube form. This is an inexpensive but temporary way to stop drafts. The best way to keep your house warmer and save on your energy bill in the long-term is to replace your drafty and leaking windows and doors with new ones.

Check Your Caulking

Caulking helps maintain a tight seal around your windows and doors. Using caulk is a huge defence against cold air entering your home and warm air escaping. Unfortunately, over time even the best caulking eventually develops cracks and gaps. Luckily, it’s easy to seal up cracked caulk or gaps around your window’s seal. Depending on the severity of the problem you might need to remove the old caulking and replace it with a new one. However, if the caulking is in adequate condition with minimal damage, you can simply patch up any problem spots.

Plastic Film is an Affordable Fix

Many homeowners place plastic films over their windows. During the winter months, this protects against the cold and helps to maintain warmer indoor temperatures. Clear plastic film is a more affordable option since it can be found at most local hardware stores. It’s held in place using double-sided tape and doesn’t block your outdoor view (although you won’t be able to open your windows). However, plastic film should be used with caution. Natural Resources Canada points out that some people are sensitive to the plastic used in heat-shrink film. To prevent damage plastic film may not be the best option for households with small children or pets. For safety reasons, it should be kept away from strong heat sources.

Take The Screens Off

It’s also a good idea to remove your screens at the beginning of the winter months. This ensures your screens are protected from harsh winter weather and make them last longer. Furthermore, having them on hand will make them easier to clean when spring arrives. Make sure you store your screens in a warm and dry space until winter ends.

Keep Warm, Winterize Your Home

Protect your windows and doors this winter. You’ll find it easier to keep your home warm and cozy with these simple tips – which you’ll appreciate when you need a break from the cold. Contact Thermo-Bilt to get started on winterizing your home!
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cleaning windows and doors

Cleaning Windows and Doors for Spring

The birds are chirping, the sun is shining longer, and the weather is getting warmer. It’s safe to say that spring is officially here! What better time than now to get started on cleaning your windows and doors ready for spring and summer. Begin preparing now, so you can fully enjoy the warm weather and fun activities ahead. This is the perfect time for you to take advantage of the nicer weather and give your windows a much needed cleaning. However, be cautious because it can be dangerous climbing ladders. To reach high windows it’s a good idea to hire professionals to help you with those hard to reach windows. If you do choose to wash your windows on your own, make sure your safety is a priority first and take the necessary precautions to stay safe as you continue to clean.

Clean Your Windows

Start by wiping your windows down using lukewarm water and mild soap. Use a soft cloth to wipe off all the dirt and grime built up over the winter. Don’t use abrasive or harsh materials such as metal scrapers on your windows, as it can scratch and permanently damage the glass. Give your windows a good rinse with warm water. If you can, use a squeegee to leave a streak-free finish or buff them using a dry cloth. Don’t use a pressure washer on your windows, it can potentially damage the siding and may penetrate the walls of your home.

Remove Debris

There’s nothing worse than built up guck usually found in slider windows and patio doors. Over the seasons and months of use, the track can get clogged with dirt, rocks and other debris. Use an old cloth,  wet rag, or paper towels to thoroughly clean out the sliding track. A good tip, if you have an old toothbrush laying around, it can be great for getting into those hard to reach areas.  Don’t forget, give the hardware and hinges a good wipe!

Lubricate Hardware

Are the windows noisy or causing squeaking sounds when they’re operated? Moving parts on your windows and doors, including tracks and hinges, should be lubricated at least twice a year in the spring and fall.  We recommend using a silicone lubricant, the material will repel water and prevent debris from sticking. You can safely use a silicone lubricant on painted surfaces, metal, wood, or plastic hardware. 


Window and Door Frames

Take a quick look at the structure of your window and door frames. Inspect for signs of damage, peeling, cracking, or fading. If your wooden window and door frames are a few years old, they may need scraping and painting to keep the wood properly protected and preserved. If not properly taken care, water can penetrate and become absorbed into wood, which can lead to warping, mould, and deterioration over time. This is also a good opportunity to check the caulking and weather stripping. However, if you find your frames are out of shape, it may be time for new replacement windows and doors.

Clean Your Window Coverings

If you have window coverings, like blinds and shutters, it’s a good idea to give them a quick clean as well. When you’ve completed washing your windows, give your blinds and shutters a wipe with a damp cloth. If you have curtains, depending on the material, you can take them to the dry cleaners or put wash them in the laundry.

Looking for New Windows and Doors

If you find your windows and doors need more than a cleaning and simple maintenance, call Thermo-Bilt at 1-416-756-0789. We'll be happy to help you choose the perfect window and door designs for your home. Contact us and get a FREE quote today! We’ll ensure you'll be able to enjoy your new windows and doors all summer long.  
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