How to cover windows in plastic

Written by larry simmons
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How to cover windows in plastic
Keep the heat in and cold out this winter by insulating your windows. (frosting background image by NiDerLander from

Windows serve as one of the largest sources of heat loss for your home during the cold-weather season. This is especially true with older homes where less energy-efficient windows may still be in place. Short of replacing inefficient windows, you can increase efficiency by insulating these windows. Covering the windows in plastic provides a barrier that keeps the heat inside your home where it belongs. While effective, the plastic will reduce visibility through the windows. Each window covered equals a savings on your heating bill as well as a decrease in wasted energy.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Window cleaner
  • Rag
  • Measuring tape
  • Plastic insulating film
  • Scissors
  • Double-sided tape
  • Hair dryer
  • Utility knife

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  1. 1

    Clean the windows thoroughly with window cleaner. Allow the window to air dry after cleaning.

  2. 2

    Measure the window frame, both length and height. Cut a piece of your plastic insulating film to the size of the window measurement using a pair of scissors.

  3. 3

    Place a strip of double-sided tape along your window frame to the side of the glass. Remove the paper covering from the tape once in place.

  4. 4

    Place the plastic over the window glass and secure it to the window frame using the exposed double-sided tape. Turn on a hair dryer and, holding the dryer about 2 inches from the surface of the glass, go over the plastic, shrinking it into place across the window to create a snug fit. Repeat the fitting process over the other windows in your home.

  5. 5

    Use a utility knife to cut away any excess plastic after fitting.

Tips and warnings

  • Leave a single window in each room uncovered to allow for quick exits during fire or other emergency situations.

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