HOME AND GARDENS: Nuts and Bolts: Keep Your Home Nice and Toasty in the Cold Winter Months

Article excerpt

With winter upon us one of the simplest ways to keep the house warm and comfortable is with good home insulation. This not only keeps winter chills at bay, but also has the benefit of dramatically reducing heating bills.

The easiest of all home insulation DIY jobs has to be draughtproofing. Draughtproofing windows and doors is relatively inexpensive and requires minimal DIY skills and time.

There are a variety of draught excluders to choose from that fit around windows and doors, ranging from simple-to-fit foam self-adhesive strips, to more sophisticated silicone rubber sealants.

There are several different types of excluders to consider.

lSelf adhesive foam strips are economical and simple to fix in place, but the quality of these varies considerably with some showing signs of perishing after one or two seasons.

Strips are usually 6mm thick and 10mm wide, and come in white. These can be cut to length with scissors and are suitable for windows and interior doors.

lSelf adhesive rubber strips have similar attributes to foam excluders. The only difference is that they are far tougher and will last longer.

lSprung strips, which form a flexible seal, are suitable for uneven or large gaps.

Made from nylon or bronze, these are more durable than a foam or rubber strip but need to be put in place with small fixing pins. Suitable for interior and exterior doors and sash and wooden framed windows.

lBrush strips are available in either self-adhesive strips or in a plastic or metal holder. They're suitable for surfaces that brush past one another, such as sash windows and also for interior and exterior doors.

lSilicone rubber sealant is most effective for large or uneven gaps and is suitable for both metal and wooden window frames as well as interior and exterior doors.

The beauty of rubber sealant is that it can be used to block a small pocket of draughts or used to seal an entire window or door. It is also available in a range of colours.

Before buying a draught excluder, measure the width of the gap which needs to be filled. …