Your home's windows are there to let in sunshine and warmth, but they can also let in the outside heat or cold. If your home's windows are getting old, they will show you several signs they need to be replaced. Here are four signs that you might need new windows in your home.
Foggy or Dirty-looking Glass
Anytime your windows have moisture between the panes of glass, this means that the seal around the windows has begun to degrade. Southern exposure windows are more likely to have this damage because they sit in direct sunlight most of the day.
When your windows get moisture in them, it means they are not as efficient as they should be. So, you will need to replace them as soon as possible because this can affect your home's temperature control.
If there is a powdery dust collecting between your window's glass panes, this indicates the window's seals are breaking down. When the sealant and coating used between the panes of glass to hold them together breaks down, the glass will look dirty, and window efficiency will be decreased.
The Frames are Degrading
Windows are not meant to last forever, and will degrade in the sun over time. You can expect aluminum windows to last anywhere from 15 to 20 years, and vinyl windows can last from 20 to 40 years. Window frames that have begun to warp, or sag, will need to be replaced with new windows as soon as possible. Vinyl window frames will usually begin to crack when they reach the end of their lifetime.
Another way to tell if your window frames have begun to degrade is if they are hard to open and close. When the frame no longer slides smoothly through the window track, it is usually because the frame is not sitting snug inside the track. When this occurs, your window loses its efficiency and can allow drafts and insects into your home and needs replacing.
Frost and Ice Growing Inside Your Window
When you can use a windowsill in your home as an icebox in the winter, you know it is time to replace your home's windows.
As the cold air seeps through the old window panes and frames, it mixes with moisture in your home's air, freezing to ice and frost on the inside of your window. Aluminum-framed windows are usually associated with this wintertime phenomenon, but it can happen to any other types of degraded or old window.
You Feel a Draft
You can do a good test of your window's energy efficiency to see if you have a draft. The best time to do this is while the outside temperature is freezing.
- Sit on the floor just in front of and below the window.
- Stretch your arms out in front of you and place your hands a couple inches from the wall.
- If you feel a blanket of cold moving over your hands and down the wall to the floor, then you have drafty windows and your windows are not keeping the inside temperature as constant as they should.
Also, if you can feel the air blowing through the window when your window is shut, your windows need replacing. This occurs when the window is not sealing properly when you shut it, or a gap has emerged between the fixed window and the frame of the sliding window. When this happens, no matter if you window is shut or open, air can always get through.
Be on a lookout for these four signs of your windows aging so you can replace them as soon as possible and save your home's energy efficiency. When you notice these signs, call a local window installation company that will come out and replace windows for you.