Insulate Your Windows in Under a Minute with Bubble Wrap

bubble wrap photo
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You can't solve all your problems with bubble wrap. For algebra, you?re better off with pen and paper or a calculator. You can't solve the current economic woes or even a Rubik?s cube with bubble wrap, but you can insulate your windows with and reduce your home's carbon footprint, lessening the effects of global warming in the process. That's something, I guess.


How to Insulate Your Windows with Bubble Wrap

Putting bubble wrap on your windows is a snap. ( or a pop.) It will take you less than a minute to insulate one window. You will need a spray bottle, an exacto knife and some bubble wrap. Mist the water onto your window. Push the bubble side of the wrap against the window. The water will hold the bubble wrap to the window all winter. You will need no tape or glue. Use the exacto knife to cut away any excess. The bubble wrap will not stain your windows.


How Well Does Bubble Wrap Insulate

A single pane window has an R value of less than one. (.8) By placing bubble wrap in the window, your window?s R value will be around two. Keep it Solar has a detailed article on how much money bubble wrap will save you.

From Keep it Solar:


For an 7000 deg-day climate (northern US), and single glazed windows, the bubble wrap increases the R value from about R1 to about R2. This cuts the heat loss from the window in half.

Heat losses with and without bubble wrap for 1 sqft of window are:

Heat loss w/o wrap = (7000 deg-day)(1 ft^2) (24 hr/day) / (1 ft^2-F/BTU) = 168K BTU per season

Heat loss with wrap = (7000 deg-day)(1 ft^2) (24 hr/day) / (2 ft^2-F/BTU) = 88K BTU per season

The Price of Bubble Wrap

You can buy your own bubble wrap. It's inexpensive, but you'll save money if you salvage it. Furniture stores will have extra bubble wrap. Any large department stores will probably be swimming in the stuff. Call around to your local merchant friends. See if they can help. Bubble wrap insulation can last up to seven years.