Draught proofing poor fitting windows and doors is a major headache for any home owner. With all the environmental awareness at the moment and the introduction of the HIPS package when you sell your house it is becoming increasingly important to ensure that your home is as energy efficient as possible.
There are several simple measures that you can take to help with this such as fitting draught strips around windows and doors. Many products are available today that are very easy to fit to help you with this such as self adhesive draught proofing strips. These new products tend to last a lot longer and are substantially more efficient than older types. These tend to be more suited to draught proofing windows.
For draught proofing doors and sash windows the best products to use are tack-on sprung metal or plastic strips. These can either feature a rubber strip of a compressible rubber seal. These are ideally suited to be positioned to the sides and tops of doors. For the threshold of the door (the piece at the bottom) special draught proofing products are available that fit to the exact width of your door. Brush style excluders are fine in most applications, but if you have a wooden or tiled floors, an under door excluder may work better.
One final area of a door that is particularly prone to cold draughts is the letter box. Again, special products can be purchased that will fit over the letter plate area and dramatically reduce any draughts that are produced.
Draught proofing your home also has a slight disadvantage in that you will possibly be closing off a great many unofficial ventilation sources that allow your home to breath. If you have fuel burning appliances in your home such as heaters and boilers then these have to have an adequate source of fresh air in order for them to burn safely. In light of this, before you start to draught proof, it is a good idea to consult a fuel supplier or RGI and ask them to check your home and see if there is still going to be an adequate source of ventilation after you have completed your draught proofing. If after checking this they do confirm that there will not be adequate ventilation then the addition of ventilator in a window pane will solve this issue. However, fitting a carbon monoxide alarm will give you extra peace of mind.
One final point to be aware of when draught proofing is that there may be an increase in condensation especially in areas such as the bathroom and the kitchen. Again, this can be solved easily with the addition of a controlled source of ventilation such as an extractor fan.
Go to our video section on Green Living to watch a film about how to reduce energy consumption in your home.