Springtime is Time to Remove the Window Cozies

“What are window cozies?”, you may ask.

They are a practice in energy conservation and environmental sustainability.  It’s a way to live more-with-less.

We bought an older home and it has 40 windows.  Because we live in the Southern Adirondack region of New York State (zone 4), we needed a way to keep some heat inside our home instead of letting the heat go out of all those old windows.

To heat our home, we were using too much oil!

We have all heard in the news about the concerns with the social unrest in the oil producing Middle East, the disastrous oil spills and nuclear accidents at power producing facilities.  We have heard about the environmental and social justice issues of damming up our waterways to produce electricity.  More recently we have learned about the environmental concerns of sourcing natural gas by the method we know as fracking (hydraulic fracturing), the environmental issues of obtaining oil from ‘tar sands’, and the environmental issues of mono-cropping used in ethanol production (amongst other things).

We are not helpless or guiltless in these concerns.  We can take personal steps to reduce the amount of fuel we consume, and therefore our reliance on these unsustainable practices.

This is one way that I have discovered to reduce the heating fuel my family consumes without having to give up comfort.

I read about thermal window shades. I looked for films, coatings, and anything that might help keep the cold out. We came up with the idea of inserting insulating foam board into the window frame when the sun goes down to prevent heat loss. We purchased foam board and cut it to size and gave it a try. It was great in theory, because it actually worked, but the foam board shed little foam balls all over the place, so it was not the best solution.  Then I stumbled on an amazing product . . .  Foil-Foam-Foil Insulation. It is basically bubble plastic with aluminum foil on each side. It is a reflective radiant insulation, and it is just fantastic! It has saved us so much in heating costs and has given us so much comfort.

We measured and cut the foil-foam-foil insulation to just a little larger than the window opening, and just by pressing it against the glass it stays where we put it.  We then close the blinds and voila! Windows as warm a toast!

Window_Cozies

Cozy measured and cut and in place.

Window_Cozies_3

Blind down

.Window_Cozies_4

Blind closed.

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The neighbor’s view.

Not too expensive. Easy to do. Measure windows, measure foil-foam-foil and cut.  They are re-usable from year to year.

Here’s a CAUTION: Just be sure to remove your foil foam foil radiant insulation Window Cozies from any eastern and southern facing windows when the sun comes up. The temperature difference between the outside air and any trapped heat between the insulation and glass could cause the glass to break.

This is a solution to keep window heat loss to a minimum. Windows on southern and eastern sides will have solar gain when the sun is shining. So when the sun is shining, remove those window cozies and let the sun warm things up.

© Nancy Babbitt and Just Desserts Blog, 2013-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Nancy Babbitt and Just Desserts Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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