How to insulate windows using bubble wrap

Here's a trick to saving on heating costs by using bubble wrap films for packaging.

Bubble wrap on window
Bubble wrap on window

Bubble films, which are normally used for packaging in order to cushion impacts, may have an unsuspected use for thermal insulation in our homes.

If, on the other hand, you are interested in insulating the windows during the summer season, so that the sun's rays do not end up overheating the inside of the house, the advice is to read this dedicated article:

https://www.drippingideas.com/inspiration/hacks-ideas/how-to-darken-windows-with-solar-films

As most people know, the heat of the house, in the winter season, is dispersed mainly through the windows (and doors) and through the ceiling.

Nowadays it is relatively rare to see windows and doors without double glazing, but in the recent past single glazing was practically the norm. Double glazing takes advantage of the gap between the two panes as an airlock between the cold from outside and the heat produced by heating the house.

If you still have single-glazed windows (and maybe even thin ones), the best thing to do would be to replace them with double glazing.

However, this solution is not economical since double glazing would require, in 90% of cases, a complete refurbishment of the window frames. There are economic incentives for those who improve the thermal insulation of their homes but even so many people cannot afford to replace their windows.

A simple and effective solution to counteract heat loss could therefore be to use bubble wrap film to achieve an effect similar to that achieved with double glazing.

These bubble films are also commonly used for greenhouse insulation.

Plastic is a very insulating material and these packaging films combine the qualities of plastic with those of the air contained in the thousands of bubbles.

Heat loss through the glass will be significantly reduced and with it comes reduced heating costs.

The application of the films is elementary and requires no special equipment.

First you need to cut the bubble film so that it covers the entire window pane.

Once this is done, it is necessary to use a sprayer containing water and spray it first on the glass and then on the bubble wrap from the smooth side and not from the bubble side.

Now all you have to do is apply the film (from the smooth side) to the glass and it will adhere by simple contact. The bubbles should stay towards you, on the inside. There are no glues or other things to use.

The plastic film should remain attached to the glass for some time but if it starts to come off simply remove it and reapply it as described above, taking care to clean the glass well first.

This can not be considered a definitive solution but only a fallback solution.

On the one hand it has the advantage of thermally insulating the glass, but on the other hand it dulls it, not allowing you to look outside.

If you have a privacy problem this solution will allow you to kill two birds with one stone, as they say.

Even though I have double glazed PVC windows I have adopted this little trick to insulate the windows even more in the rooms I don't usually go to.

With the arrival of summer you can then remove the bubble wrap from the windows without leaving a trace and store it for the next winter season or even for packing items in case you need it.

Here is a video that summarizes all the steps which, I repeat, are really very simple.

DIY Editor
Do-it-yourself enthusiast. I started with the renovation of my flat and then I changhed this passion into my job.