Child looking out a window.

Make your windows energy efficient

With these fixes, you can keep your home warmer in winter and cooler in summer.

Outdated windows can add to your energy bills, not to mention lower your comfort at home. However, you don't have to replace all old windows to improve energy efficiency. Try these DIY updates to make windows energy efficient:

  • Install storm windows: Look for low-emissivity storm windows, which can save 12% to 33% of heating and cooling costs, according to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). Exterior storm windows will fit on most standard double-hung windows.
  • Hang curtains: According to the DOE, medium-colored drapes with white-plastic backings can reduce heat gain by 33% when they're drawn over windows that receive direct sunlight. During winter, drapes can act as insulation, reducing heat loss by as much as 10%.
  • Add caulk to windows: The DOE estimates that sealing air leaks around windows can cut energy costs by 10% to 20%. You'll need approximately half a cartridge of caulk per window or door.
  • Use weather stripping: The DOE reports that weather stripping can help you save up to 10% on energy bills. Metal and vinyl weather stripping are the most effective, but foam is an inexpensive alternative. Clean the area thoroughly before applying for best results.
  • Create exterior shade: Awnings and other exterior shading help keep your home cool in the summer by blocking sunlight. The DOE says awnings can reduce heat gain by 65% to 77%. Look for awnings that are opaque but light in color to reflect the most heat.
  • Replace your windows: If your windows are very old or ineffective, replacing them may be best. But don't throw them away: Consider environmentally friendly disposal options, such as donating them to a Habitat for Humanity ReStore or bringing them to a building materials reuse center.

State Farm® is helping you and your family save energy, lower utility bills, and protect your home. Discover more on our energy management topic page.

The information in this article was obtained from various sources not associated with State Farm® (including State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company and its subsidiaries and affiliates). While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. State Farm is not responsible for, and does not endorse or approve, either implicitly or explicitly, the content of any third party sites that might be hyperlinked from this page. The information is not intended to replace manuals, instructions or information provided by a manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional, or to affect coverage under any applicable insurance policy. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. State Farm makes no guarantees of results from use of this information.

Start a quote

Select a product to start a quote.

Find agents near
you or contact us

There’s one ready to offer personalized service to fit your specific needs.

Related articles

Help conquer home humidity problems with these tips

High humidity is not only uncomfortable, it can also threaten your home’s structure and surfaces.

What not to store in the garage

Wondering what not to store in the garage? Some items might surprise you. Learn more about what can stay and what should be stored elsewhere.

Ways to go green at home

Renters can do their part to save the planet with these 11 green living tips for increasing their eco-friendly footprint.

How to winterize a house

Winterizing your home to protect against snow and below-freezing temps can help your home withstand the ups, downs and erratic moods of Mother Nature.