With fall fading and winter approaching now is the time to start thinking about ways to keep the chill out. One way to save energy is to replace leaky wooden windows with energy efficient vinyl replacement windows. This improvement will pay for itself in reduced heating and cooling bills. You can also think about window treatments that keep cold air out and heat in.
Drapes Properly hung drapes can keep drafts at bay. Consider letting hems hang or pool to the floor. This pooling gives a look of elegance, but also stops drafts from underneath. Make sure that when drapes are closed they overlap slightly. This acts as a seal to cold breezes. Drapes that extend to ceiling height also block drafts from the top. A cornice with the top closed with also block upward drafts.
Insulated Panels This is a quick do-it-yourself project that can save energy and money. Measure a panel made of foam core board to fit the inside window frame. Cover it with a decorative fabric. Adding a quilted fabric increases the insulation. Attach the panel with heavy duty Velcro strips or simply pop them inside the window frame. These can be put up at night or on especially cold days.
Shades Window shades are one of the cheapest alternatives to keeping out cold. They are also available in many styles to fit any window or decor. Roman shades can be a decorative accent while saving energy. Many styles are filled with insulation so that when shades are drawn they act as a barrier to heat loss. There are also shades with magnetic strips to attach to the inside of the window frame. The shades cling to the strip making a perfect seal. Choose a translucent style to admit light while keeping out the cold.
Shutters Exterior shutters can be very effective at keeping out cold air. Aside from protecting against cold weather and rain, they provide extra security while protecting your windows from external damage. They are usually made to be operated from inside. Interior shutters provide most of the benefits of exterior shutters. These shutters are easily opened and closed and are effective at reducing drafts.