Window openings are crucial in the building as they allow natural light into your living spaces and keep your home cool. Also, the windows add some decoration to the houses.
However, despite the usefulness of windows in homes, they are prone to problems. For instance, one of the most common problems in window openings is drafts and cold air coming into the room or warm coming out during the winter. In other cases, you may not want the windows altogether, especially when you feel they are in the wrong place.
In such circumstances, you commonly realize you should close off those window openings. But how do you close off a window opening? In this article, you will learn some great tips for closing window openings.
Materials to Use to Close Off Windows
You will need the following materials to close off your window openings:
- Nails or screws
- Pry bar
- Utility Knife
- Miter saw
- Plywood or OSB board
- Insulation material
- Chalk or pencil
- Caulk gun
- Primer and paint
Methods to Close Off Windows
Usually, there are plenty of options to choose from when it comes to closing off the windows. Notably, some of the methods provide a temporary solution, and you can use them to close off or temporarily block your windows for privacy, to block light, or prevent energy loss. These methods include the use of window treatments which include:
- Curtains are an excellent option for small or large windows, and they work well when you want to block the view entirely, but you can still open them to allow light. The curtains are a great way to block out light and noise. Also, curtains can be used as an extra layer of insulation to prevent energy or keep the room warm by blocking out cold air. Importantly, you can use them in any room, from your bedroom at night to the living room during the day.
- Cellular Shades. Cellular shades are a popular way to block light and keep your home comfortable regardless of unfavorable weather conditions outside. They work by covering the window with a netting that’s made of woven polyester fabric. The shades are practical to use during the cold season as they prevent heat loss through the windows by 40%.
- Shutters are an excellent option for closing off windows to ensure privacy. They can be made of wood, metal, or vinyl and are available in many different styles and sizes, so you’ll be able to find one that fits your window perfectly. Notably, the shutters can be painted to match the rest of the room or left plain, depending on your preference.
- Draperies are the fabric that hangs from the top to the bottom of the windows. They can block out light and noise and create a more comfortable feel. Also, they are suitable for hiding an unattractive view. Notably, the draperies come in many different styles where some loosely while others hang straight down like curtains.
Steps of Closing Off Windows Permanently
Despite many methods of blocking the light and noise coming through the windows or blocking the outside views using window treatments, it is possible to close off a window permanently. In the end, no one can tell if there was a window in the first place.
Therefore, if you want to close off a window, especially during home remodeling or renovation, the following are simple steps you should follow:
- Clear all the stuff from the bottom of the window. Closing off large openings can be a challenge when you have any obstacles in place already. Remove any items that might obstruct you from accessing the window.
- Remove the caulk and paint. Remove all existing caulk around the edges of each window pane on both sides of the window.
- Remove the trim and sill.Using a pry bar, remove the window trim and sill from around the edges of your window. Alternatively, you can loosen the sill by hitting the bottom of it using a hammer. Removing these two first makes it easier to remove the window.
- Remove the nails and screws as you work. For your safety as you work and to make the work easier, remove nails and screws and ensure you keep them in a secure place as you work.
- Pull the window out.Instead of smashing the window, remove it carefully. You can only hit the window where it’s unavoidable.
- Sand the area. Use sandpaper to remove any imperfections on the wall left after removing the trim and sill.
- Measure, mark, and cut for Studs and scab boards. To ensure the new closing-off board fits into the window, measure the dimensions of the window cavity and mark for precision during fitting. Also, using a miter saw, cut a framework for the boards.
- Cut plywood or OSB board.Using a jig saw or alternative cutting tool, cut the boards into a size that will match the created framework inside of the window cavity.
- Cut the drywall section.Cut a section of drywall to be used on the inside. The drywall board size should match the window cavity dimensions.
- Calculate the total width of the plywood and dry wood. Use the dimensions you have measured, calculate the widths to determine the depth of the window frame, and secure the place using wood screws.
- Attach plywood. Attach plywood to the bottom of your window opening using nails or screws. The bottom piece must be flush with both sides of your existing windowsill, then nail or screw it into place.
- Add insulation material. Cut and stuff insulation material in the window opening without compressing it. Once done, secure it using tape.
- Fit the drywall. Fit the drywall against the plywood or OSB board and ensure it lies flush with the wall. Screw the drywall using drywall screws.
- Use caulk to seal the gaps. If there are gaps between the outside edge of your new plywood, you can fill them with a caulking layer. Notably, when applying the caulk, you can use a putty knife, to apply. Also, apply medium pressure to ensure the caulk fills the cracks, and there are no gaps left.
- Tape the caulked area. Run tape over the wet and newly applied caulk. During the process, use a bit of pressure to smooth down the tape.
- Apply a thin coat of caulk. To cover the tape, apply a thin coat of caulk.
- Let the caulk dry. Wait for some hours to let the caulk dry.
- Sand the area.To remove imperfections left on the caulked area, sand it.
- Apply sealing material over the closed-off window surface. Apply a suitable sealing material over the closed window surface, and ensure the new texture matches the old one of the surrounding wall surfaces. Then, allow the surface to dry.
- Prepare the surface for painting. Apply primer and paint that matches the one used on the surrounding wall surface.
- Disguise the filled window opening on the outside. Since it’s difficult to hide the sealed window opening from the exterior side entirely, you can disguise the area by adding flowers.
Factors to Consider Choosing the Materials and Methods for Closing Off Windows
The following are some factors to consider when choosing a specific method of closing off windows and not the other:
- Skills required. Choose the most straightforward method that best suits your skill set. Alternatively, if the way you pick requires specific expertise which you don’t have, then you can hire an expert to do the work.
- Some methods of closing window openings are more expensive than others. For instance, if you are looking for a cheap way to close off windows, then you can use curtains that are popular and available at different qualities and prices. Alternatively, you can choose expensive methods that may also be a durable solution, especially if you don’t want the window altogether.
- The purpose for closing off the windows. Before selecting a suitable method for closing off your windows, you should consider the goal of closing the window. For instance, if you want to create more wall space, you may realize more permanent ways of closing the windows, such as using plywood and drywall boards, are suitable.
- The time needed to close the window and the time you want to set aside to accomplish the task will determine which method will work best for you. If you have limited time, you can use quick ways of blocking the windows, such as using window treatments.
- Although there can be multiple methods that are suitable for closing off windows for a specific purpose, still, some people will opt to choose one way over the other depending on their taste or preference.
Whether your house has sliding windows, casement windows, double-hung windows, or any other type of windows, you can apply any of the above methods or follow the steps above to close off the window openings you don’t need.
Choosing the right window close-off option will enable you to maintain optimal comfort in your home or commercial space all year round. Therefore, use any method to make your home more comfortable throughout the year, irrespective of the season and surroundings.