Preventing Drafty Wooden Sash Windows Preventing Drafty Wooden Sash Windows

Wooden sash windows are found in many homes throughout the world, and while they are very aesthetically appealing, then tend to allow drafts into and out of your home more than vinyl windows do. If you decide to keep your wooden sash windows, then a few steps should be taken to cut down on the drafts, which will help with heating during the window and cooling during the summer.

The Condition of the Window

The first thing that you should check is the condition of the window itself. If there are any cracks or chips in the glass, then you should take the window out and replace it. Even the smallest of crack can allow the interior air of the house to mingle with the exterior weather, which will prevent you from having a window that is draft free.

Install Foam Insulation

The next step that should be taken is to use foam insulation on the outer barrier of the window. In order to do accomplish this simply take the inner trim off with a small pry bar, taking care to not damage the wood. Get a can of spray foam insulation, place the straw onto the end of the spout, and spray it into any opens that surround the window. Be careful when doing this because as the spray foam dries it expands. Before reinstalling the trim boards use a sharp utility knife, after the foam has dried completely, and trim off any excess amounts.


The last area of a window that needs to be checked is the outer edge by the siding of the house, and any inner panels that are present. Pull out any old, cracked silicone that is present and run a thick bead of caulking all the way around the edges. Use your fingertip to level the caulking before it dries, which will not only push the substance into all the cracks and crevices, but will flatten it out so that it blends in with the window and siding.

Install Storm Windows

Another way to decrease the amount of drafts is to install storm windows on the outside of the house. This can be an expensive venture, but if you want to maximum the insulating effects of your windows than it is a project that should be done. If you only want a temporary barrier from the weather, such as during the winter, you can also staple up sheets of heavy duty plastic to the outer or inner trim. This process is accomplished very easily, but it is not very appealing to the eye.

Stopping drafts through a wooden window is not a hard task. Any average homeowner can draft proof their entire house within a matter of hours. The above suggestions are ways to eliminate all drafts. Just be aware that the older the windows are the more time that will be needed to repair them. If the caulking around the center panels are chipping and falling away be sure to get some window caulking and reapply it after the old, brittle caulking is removed. This is actually an often forgotten step when insulating older wooden windows, one that can actually make a big difference when it comes to your battle with stopping drafts.

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