By Russ and Tiña De Maris
When my feet hit the deck one morning in the old RV, I knew something was decidedly wrong. Even with a bit of neuropathy, my sensors indicated that it was one COLD Arizona morning. The recording thermometer confirmed it: 24 degrees in Quartzsite. Yes, folks, it does sometimes get a wee bit on the chilly side, even in “RV nirvana.”
Part of the chill factor is that old problem of “single-glazed” RV windows. Sure, some manufacturers include “storm windows” on their rigs, but a lot of us just have that single sheet of clear stuff between us and the outside world. What’s to do if you have too much cold coming through the glass? Add your own “storm window” with shrink-fit window insulation. You can buy this stuff at nearly any hardware store or home center.
Besides the window insulation kit, you’ll also need scissors and a blow dryer. Some RVers say that they use an electric space heater to “shrink” the plastic into place. If you try that trick, start at a considerable distance away from the plastic lest you find the source too hot and burn a hole in your plastic rather than shrinking it into place.
Here’s a little video that shows you the basic principles of installing the stuff. However, instead of sticking the sticky tape away from the window, most of us can stick it directly to the window unit itself. You may need to “work around” problems like window cranks. We might add that the video makes it appear that there are some leftover wrinkles in the finished product. We’re not sure if that’s an illusion, or if our “installer” just didn’t work long enough on getting the wrinkles out. With effort, your final product will be flat, tight, and highly viewable.
The last time we looked, a kit good for insulating up to five 3′ x 5′ windows cost about $16 at Amazon.com.