With winter quickly approaching, we’re all getting ready for the cold months. While you’re putting away your lawn furniture and storing your hoses, it’s a great time to take down your window screens and store them for the winter.
Do I really need to remove them for winter?
It may seem like a hassle, but there are many good reasons to take down your window screens for the winter months.
Damage. When Mother Nature brings snow and ice, they can accumulate between the screen and the window, potentially tearing the screen and possibly causing leaks and damage to your window sills or causing your screens to stretch or sag.
Heat loss. An experiment was conducted by Midcoast Green Collaborative, a non-profit group of business people promoting green energy in Damariscotta, Maine. On a sunny day, soapstone tiles were placed in front of sunny windows with screens and without and then the temperatures measured, and the one with the window screen was 30-40% colder than the one without. That’s more than a third of solar energy being blocked, causing you to spend more money on fuel costs.
Curb appeal. Windows simply look better when they’re clean and shiny and not blocked by screens. Clean, shiny windows will make those holiday decorations look better!
Great time to clean them. Taking them down is the perfect time to inspect them for tears and perform repairs and to clean them, as well as ensuring there has been no damage to windows, sills and window casings over the previous year that may need to be prepared before winter arrives.
To clean them, first vacuum them with a soft brush attachment. Next, fill a bucket with some blue Dawn dish soap and warm water and use a sponge to gently clean the screens and then rinse thoroughly with a hose. (Make sure that you do not apply too much pressure at any time during the cleaning process because you may stretch or ruin the screens.) Use a soft towel to dry them and lay them out in the sun. Once they have dried completely, store them in the basement or the garage in an area that is dry and where they won’t be damaged. You may want to use masking tape and a marker to label the screens to make it easier when you put them back up in the spring.
Cleaning and storing your window screens will not only save you money on heating costs, but also on costly repairs to screens and windows from snow and ice damage. Make it part of your yearly home winter preparations.