cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Poor Man's double pane windows

ktmrfs
Explorer
Explorer
Since we do a reasonable amount of fall/winter camping, and lots when it is hot I decided to see what I could do to solve the issue with single pane windows. Biggest is heat gain in the summer and needing heat higher in the winter since sitting near window feels colder.

So.... off to the hardware store to get the Window film kits they sell for houses to make double pane windows. Basically a thin heat shrink plastic and double sided tape.

I tried it on a few windows two trips ago, definitely noticed it solved the condensation problem and DW said sitting in the dinette she felt warmer. The issue was the cheap film I bought had marginal tape and they soon started coming loose.

So, this last week I tried again with 3M film and tape. Success. Held up great for our trip to the coast. felt much warmer inside.

I used the film on all the fixed panes and all the sliding windows. I didn't use it on the awning windows, that still gives us enough windows for ventilation. Uncovered panes did fog, but not the rest and I was able to lower the thermostat by 2 degrees and we were still warm, and the furnace seemed to run less.

Installation was easy, run the tape around the frame trim, put the film on and adjust it to be reasonably taught and straight then hit it with a hair dryer. It shrinks enough to make a nice clear tight panel. Hard to see which ones had film on them or not.

And to remove, if you want, the tape is designed to stick harder to the film than to the frame, so when you pull up on the film to remove it , the tape comes with it.

Total cost for all the trailer windows was less than $15.

If this works well, I may go to tap plastics and have plastic cut for the bigger frames and screw them on for a more permanent fix.
2011 Keystone Outback 295RE
2004 14' bikehauler with full living quarters
2015.5 Denali 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison
2004.5 Silverado 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison passed on to our Son!
14 REPLIES 14

ependydad
Explorer
Explorer
ktmrfs wrote:
I would think the 3M would work year round. Cut down heat gain in the summer, cut down heat loss and reduce window fogging in the winter.

After seeing how well the 3M stuff worked on a coast campout with lots of rain and humidity and cold weather, I went to tap plastics and had them cut plastic to fit each window. they will cut corner radius as well, cost a bit more but saved me a lot of time. Now all the windows that don't open have the acrylic pane installed with a couple of screws on each side.

Part of the reason going to acrylic is with several you grandkids playing around, I figure the 3M stuff wouldn't last to long before the kids ended up puncturing it. However the stuff is quite strong.


Thanks. I have 2 germ-bags myself (kids, not grandkids :D).
2017 Spartan 1245 by Prime Time
2018 Ram 3500 Crew Cab DRW w/ 4.10 gears and 8' bed
FW Hitch: TrailerSaver TS3
Learn to RV- learn about RVing - Towing Planner Calculators - Family Fulltiming FB page

ktmrfs
Explorer
Explorer
ependydad wrote:
I assume I could keep this stick-on stuff all year round? Would help in the summer for cooling and winter for heating?

We winter in warmer climates and need it less than spending time in the summer where it's hot. We hate the lack of visibility with Reflectix and would love an alternative for our living room.


I would think the 3M would work year round. Cut down heat gain in the summer, cut down heat loss and reduce window fogging in the winter.

After seeing how well the 3M stuff worked on a coast campout with lots of rain and humidity and cold weather, I went to tap plastics and had them cut plastic to fit each window. they will cut corner radius as well, cost a bit more but saved me a lot of time. Now all the windows that don't open have the acrylic pane installed with a couple of screws on each side.

Part of the reason going to acrylic is with several you grandkids playing around, I figure the 3M stuff wouldn't last to long before the kids ended up puncturing it. However the stuff is quite strong.
2011 Keystone Outback 295RE
2004 14' bikehauler with full living quarters
2015.5 Denali 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison
2004.5 Silverado 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison passed on to our Son!

ependydad
Explorer
Explorer
I assume I could keep this stick-on stuff all year round? Would help in the summer for cooling and winter for heating?

We winter in warmer climates and need it less than spending time in the summer where it's hot. We hate the lack of visibility with Reflectix and would love an alternative for our living room.
2017 Spartan 1245 by Prime Time
2018 Ram 3500 Crew Cab DRW w/ 4.10 gears and 8' bed
FW Hitch: TrailerSaver TS3
Learn to RV- learn about RVing - Towing Planner Calculators - Family Fulltiming FB page

westend
Explorer
Explorer
ktmrfs wrote:
My next step is to make something more permanent. Went to TAP plastics and had them cut me a couple of pieces of plastic to try for a double pane window. Not a bad price and they did the radiused corners. Will be trying it to see how well it works, and if it works as expected will do all the windows.

Along this same line (permanence), foam board works exceedingly well. Of course, it blocks light and the view. That may not be a consideration at extremely low temps at night, in Winter. You can also use a second interior panel of whatever material as a passive heater. Allow intake and exhaust space at the top and bottom of interior panel. If the window faces direct sun, you will generate considerable heat from that window, even in very cold weather.
'03 F-250 4x4 CC
'71 Starcraft Wanderstar -- The Cowboy/Hilton

Hudsoner
Explorer
Explorer
ktmrfs wrote:


and the glad wrap is really the same material as the shrink wrap and tape for windows.

You are pretty wrong here with your statement. Glad Wrap or other "cling wrap" is mostly made of LDPE (Low-Density Polyethylene). It used to be mostly made of PVC until a few years ago.

The window insulation film is mostly made of a polyolefin, or more specific of polypropylene that underwent a specific heat treatment process.

ktmrfs
Explorer
Explorer
JiminDenver wrote:
I have gone even less permanent by using glad press and seal wrap. It sticks well to the frames and comes off with ease. Larger windows take multiple pieces so it's best to put them together before hanging.

We have also used thick bath towels and I'm cutting covers out of 1/4 inch foam.


It's amazing how little effort it takes to make a huge improvement in either winter or summer with single pane windows.

towels, cling wrap, foam, etc. all make a big improvement.

DW has hung towels or sheets over the windows on the inside in the summer on the windows facing the sun and the improvment was very noticeable.

and the glad wrap is really the same material as the shrink wrap and tape for windows.
2011 Keystone Outback 295RE
2004 14' bikehauler with full living quarters
2015.5 Denali 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison
2004.5 Silverado 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison passed on to our Son!

JiminDenver
Explorer
Explorer
I have gone even less permanent by using glad press and seal wrap. It sticks well to the frames and comes off with ease. Larger windows take multiple pieces so it's best to put them together before hanging.

We have also used thick bath towels and I'm cutting covers out of 1/4 inch foam.
2011 GulfStream Amerilite 25BH
2003 Ford Expedition with 435w tilting portable/ TS-MPPT-45
750w solar , TS-MPPT-60 on the trailer
675 Ah bank, Trip-lite 1250fc inverter
Sportsman 2200w inverter generator

ktmrfs
Explorer
Explorer
My next step is to make something more permanent. Went to TAP plastics and had them cut me a couple of pieces of plastic to try for a double pane window. Not a bad price and they did the radiused corners. Will be trying it to see how well it works, and if it works as expected will do all the windows.
2011 Keystone Outback 295RE
2004 14' bikehauler with full living quarters
2015.5 Denali 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison
2004.5 Silverado 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison passed on to our Son!

Strabo
Explorer
Explorer
rjf7g wrote:
This is cool. I bought a roll of Reflectix at Lowe's and cut a piece slightly larger than each window and put it in and take it out as needed. More than $15 but very effective and flexible.


Used the same thing, big improvement.
04' F350 PSD TB SC FX4 XLT, TH-04' 32' Sandpiper Sport Fifthwheel WB Dual Axle
07' Rhino 686 SS106-ITP-AFE-BRP-T4-CDI-KIBBLEBWHITE-CVT-TSTICH-Ridgid LED LightBar-HID Conversion Kit-LIVEWIRE
04' Honda 250 Sportstrac quad
05' Honda 400 Ranchers quad

ktmrfs
Explorer
Explorer
BuckyBadger wrote:
Hornnumb2 wrote:
Do you have a picture of this stuff or actual name, never heard it.


I think he's talking about window insulator kits


yup that's what I used. Be aware other brands may not be the quality you want,
2011 Keystone Outback 295RE
2004 14' bikehauler with full living quarters
2015.5 Denali 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison
2004.5 Silverado 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison passed on to our Son!

BuckyBadger
Explorer
Explorer
Hornnumb2 wrote:
Do you have a picture of this stuff or actual name, never heard it.


I think he's talking about window insulator kits

Hornnumb2
Explorer
Explorer
Do you have a picture of this stuff or actual name, never heard it.

ktmrfs
Explorer
Explorer
rjf7g wrote:
This is cool. I bought a roll of Reflectix at Lowe's and cut a piece slightly larger than each window and put it in and take it out as needed. More than $15 but very effective and flexible.


another good solution. less visibility but more insulation.
2011 Keystone Outback 295RE
2004 14' bikehauler with full living quarters
2015.5 Denali 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison
2004.5 Silverado 4x4 CC/SB Duramax/Allison passed on to our Son!

rjf7g
Explorer
Explorer
This is cool. I bought a roll of Reflectix at Lowe's and cut a piece slightly larger than each window and put it in and take it out as needed. More than $15 but very effective and flexible.
***********************************************
1999 American Cruiser Class B
2006 Palomino Puma 27FQ Bunkhouse
2007 Gulfstream Innsbruck 36FRS Park Trailer