We definitely take our windows for granted. They keep out harsh weather, can make our homes look updated and provide us with amazing views while protecting us from danger. However, like most things, the years take their toll and windows become less effective. Since there is no hard and fast expiration date printed on the side of windows, how do you know when it’s time to replace them?
Here are a few tell-tale signs that your windows may have seen better days and that you should probably replace them.
CONDENSATION – If you notice your windows are frosting BETWEEN the layers of glass, this means that the seals have failed and it’s time for a replacement. When seals fail, the insulating gas used to make the window energy efficient flies the coop. Your windows will proceed to become more leak-prone unless you address the issue. Not all condensation is bad, it is a natural occurrence, so be sure you know what you are looking at and that it is happening between layers.
FAULTY WINDOW FRAMES – Window frames that are chipped, soft to the touch or rotted are major problems. Moisture is getting into your home, which can cause mold buildup and even cause your windows to sag. Letting this type of moisture in can damage the structure of your home and become quite costly down the line. Frames that have these issues are red flags that you need a new window.
LEAKY WINDOWS – In some cases, the window itself may leak. This is NEVER okay. It doesn’t matter if it’s a small amount of water, your windows are intended to keep moisture OUT of your home. No matter the amount of water, moisture spawns mold growth, which can be detrimental to your home’s structure. The longer you wait to resolve this issue, the higher the risk of major issues forming down the road. Usually leaky windows are due to poor installation or failed seals. Only repairing those issues is simply putting a band-aid on a gaping wound that should be replaced.
OPEN/CLOSE ISSUES – When you have trouble opening or closing a window, this means that either they are rusting and rotting or they were not installed correctly, which caused balance issues to occur. Wood windows are especially susceptible and can become swollen or might be painted shut. Windows that don’t close all the way will be hard to lock and secure, which can leave your space a target for crime. Your windows should require very little effort to open and close smoothly.
DRAFTS – This might be an obvious one to detect. If your window is shut but you feel a draft or the windows feel colder than the rest of your home, they are definitely not energy efficient any longer. You can detect drafts by holding a candle or incense stick near window frames and seeing if the flame or smoke moves sideways. Windows that are in really bad shape have light coming through the frames. Those little holes are allowing your cooled air or heated air to escape. You ever hear the phrase “I’m not paying to heat the whole neighborhood” from relatives? Well, you are. Replacing these windows will keep your HVAC systems from working overtime and help keep those energy bills much lower.
SOUNDS – Energy efficient windows actually absorb sound waves before they enter your home, making for a much more peaceful environment. Windows that are not sealed correctly or are poorly made allow the sounds of the outdoors to flood into your home. This can be quite disturbing if you live on a busier street.
While you may need to install new windows due to accidents or severe storm damage, often it is hard to tell when something is a small fix or needs to be completely replaced. These tips can help you determine a faulty window before the problem gets worse and morphs into something far more disastrous. The Siding Experts of Schaumburg offer many varieties of windows to keep your home looking sharp and those energy bills much lower. With over a decade of experience installing windows throughout Chicagoland, we can help you determine which option is the best for your home. When it comes to windows that may have seen better days, we can help breathe new life into your home!