Green Living Tips: Weather Stripping Your Home

Weather stripping your windows and doors is one of those green living tips that is essential in keeping your heating and cooling costs low while conserving energy. That's because weather stripping materials prevent both cold and hot air from seeping into your home, thereby reducing cooling and heating consumption. A knowledge of the weather stripping process, as well as the various materials used, is essential in lowering your costs and making more efficient use of energy.

Types of Materials

Weather stripping is offered in a variety of materials, as well and depths and sizes. Cheaper weather stripping is available in felt and foam, and in most cases, better suited to those areas of the house that do not see much use. These kinds of materials do not hold up as well as other weather stripping materials since they are more affected by changes in the climate. In addition, they do not bar the entrance of cold and hot air as well as other weather stripping products. Although it costs more, vinyl does a better job of keeping cold and warm air from entering the home. It holds up better too, as it resists humidity better than foam or felt. If you want to get the most for your money, however, weather stripping made of such metals as stainless steel, aluminum, copper, or bronze is a better selection. Not only is it reasonably priced, it lasts for a long time.

Measuring Weather Stripping

However, before you make a decision to go out and buy weather stripping, you will need to determine the amount you will require. Therefore, it will be necessary to take measurements of all the doors and windows in your home. Measure around each window frame and door where you plan to apply stripping. Add up all the measurements, plus around 10 percent of the total to account for any mistakes you may make while applying the product.

Surface and Temperature Requirements

Although you will need to refer to the application instructions for the weather stripping you buy, basically, the material should be applied to a surface that is free from any type of moisture. Also, make sure that you are applying it in a room whose temperature is above the freezing point.

Applying Weather Stripping

Once you decide that the surface meets the requirements for application, you will need to, once again, measure the door or window where you plan to install the product. Do not cut any of the material until you obtain a measurement. Proceed to securely affix the weather stripping against the surface, or, for example, the sash, if you are applying it to a window or along the jamb. The stripping material should easily fit inside the door or window in such a way that it becomes condensed whenever the window or door is shut.

Ease of Operation

If you have applied the weather stripping correctly, you will have no problem opening or closing the door or window where the installation was made. As mentioned, weather stripping comes in a variety of depths and sizes, so if you take concise measurements and use the right-sized product, the weather stripping should fit correctly where it is applied.