Windows are an integral part of any home and getting replacement windows installed is one of the best value home improvements a homeowner can make, with a full set of shiny new windows often increasing the re-sale value of the property. But that’s not the only reason to have your windows changed. Windows and window frames are exposed to a vast range of weather conditions, ranging from the summer heat to pouring rain to the sub-zero temperatures we experience during winter, and it is therefore not surprising that their performance will deteriorate over time. But when exactly should you have your windows changed? Should they be taken out and replaced after a set number of years or will it become apparent when the time is right? As one of Canada’s finest windows and doors suppliers, we can tell you that based on our experience, there is no universal answer to that question. There are however a number of things to watch out for that can help you determine when replacement windows are necessary, which we are going to explain below.
Signs that You May Need Replacement Windows
The following are simple tests and observations that the average homeowner can make on their own without any special equipment to assess the condition of the windows at their property.
Drafts Through Closed Windows
One of the main things to look for is an unwanted flow of air through your windows when they are closed. To do this, either work your way around each of your windows, using your hands to feel for drafts or hold a candle up against the frame of each window, and if it flickers this is a sign air is blowing through the window. Not only will this result in heat loss during the winter, and an unwanted increase in temperature during the summer, but it could also let moisture into your home which will encourage the growth of mold and cause the frames to rot if they are made of wood.
As you can’t paint vinyl windows, this step is only applicable if you currently have wood or aluminum windows. If your windows are particularly old, they are more vulnerable to this and peeling paint is a sign that they are not able to repel moisture. While this can be solved by simply repainting the frames and applying a stain, if the frames have absorbed too much moisture they may have begun to rot or rust, which can only be solved with replacement windows. You should also be aware that rot can spread from one frame to the next, and will severely affect both the appearance and performance of your windows.
Tough to Open and Close
Windows should be easy to open and close. You shouldn’t have to have a battle with them every time you want to use them. If this sounds familiar then if could be time for a change. There is a slim chance that they might just need a little oil, but more often than not, if it takes a considerable effort to push them open they will be beyond anything simple maintenance can cure.
Frequent Window Fogging
If you often notice the window clouding up as you sit down to watch your favorite TV show in the living room, it could be a cause for concern. I say could because it really depends on where the fog is forming. If it is forming on the exterior surfaces of your window panels, it is because there is a contrast in the temperature outside your home and inside your home, leading moisture to condense on the coldest available surface – your windows. This isn’t a scenario that will result in you needing replacement windows, but if the fog is forming on the interior surfaces of your window (between the panes), it could be a different story. Many times when a homeowner notices this problem, their windows are fairly old, and often the condition of the seal has deteriorated, allowing moisture to get inside. As the expression goes, “nothing lasts forever”, and when this occurs you will probably need to call a windows specialist to help you select a set of replacement windows that not only integrate well into your home’s existing decor, but that insulate your home efficiently too.
Hot in Summer, Cold in Winter
While a window’s primary role is to let light into your home, it should also keep your property properly insulated. If your windows are failing to do this, you could be paying over the odds to heat and cool your home each year. One easy test you can do to check whether your windows are sufficiently insulating your property is to simply touch the glass. If on a warm day the glass is especially warm, or on a cold day the glass is especially cold, this is a sign that your windows are not performing as they should and you might want to look at replacement windows that are more energy efficient.
Icy Build-Up on Windows
This is another sign that your windows aren’t sufficiently insulating your property. In winter, if your windows allow heat to escape from your property, the rapid change in surrounding temperature when this heat reaches the outside can cause condensation, which then freezes on the outside of your windows.
Can You Hear Noise Clearly?
Windows aren’t only designed to block heat loss, they should also minimize the amount of noise that you hear from outside your property. If noise becomes particularly apparent, which is often the case if you have old, single pane windows, then it might be time to get some new ones fitted.
If you go round each of the windows at your property and notice any of these tell-tale signs, then the investment required to purchase replacement windows in the short term, is almost always more cost efficient in the long term than sticking with windows that are in poor condition and are not able to properly insulate your property. Weather Pro has been supplying, fitting and maintaining high quality windows for a number of years and is a BBB accredited business. Whether you want a quote for some new replacement windows, or you want us to come out to your home and professionally assess the condition of your existing windows, give us a call today.
For help with purchasing replacement windows, call Weather Pro today.
About Weather Pro Windows & Doors
Weather Pro Windows & Doors has years of industry experience and our goal is to use our expertise to help each and every client that approaches us, whether a first time buyer or a long-time homeowner, to find the perfect windows and doors that meet all their needs. We specialize in Replacement Windows, Vinyl Windows, Entry Doors, Exterior Doors and Patio Doors. Weather Pro Windows and Doors proudly serves the Calgary, Edmonton and Winnipeg areas. Visit us on Google+.