5 Signs It’s Time To Replace Your Windows
When to replace your windows?
But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks? While Shakespeare was referring to young love, there’s something to be said for the role a window plays in everyday life.
Seriously though, windows are an integral part of our homes, so when they look terrible and don’t work properly, it can have a ripple effect on not only our psyche, but also the value of what is likely our most substantial investment.
Now that we’ve established that, here are 5 signs it’s time to replace your windows:
They look worse for wear
This one’s pretty obvious.
Let’s say you live in a historic property. Well, just because it’s old doesn’t mean the window should look like they’re going to fall out, because after all, how long do windows last anyway? What’s important to consider when approaching a historic replacement though, is to become aware of and abide by the local building codes to ensure you’re following the proper guidelines and can finish your project without incident.
You may be thinking, “well, maybe I can just paint over the cruddy looking windows?” While it may be a short-term fix, you’re ignoring the fact that you’re probably going to have to just do it again in the near future. Plus, depending on what type of material your windows are made out of (vinyl, wood, fiberglass, etc.) it may require a bit more effort to refinish vs. replacing them altogether.
Lastly, how your windows look can also have a detrimental impact on the value of your home. But even if you don’t plan to sell anytime soon, who wants to look at a peeling, chalked or faded window every day?
They aren’t operational
It’s proven that circulating the air in your home frequently can do wonders for your state of mind and your overall health. It’s all a matter of circulation so if you can’t open your windows then you have no way of introducing fresh air.
Sometimes it might be just a matter of the windows being painted shut. OK, that can be addressed somewhat easily. However, an operating window could have a variety of parts that allow them to operate and if those inner workings start to deteriorate, it may be difficult or impossible to open. If that’s the situation in your case, then it’s definitely something that needs attention.
If a window is our portal to the outside world, it’s a safe bet we’d prefer to have a clear view and foggy windows certainly aren’t conducive to that.
So what causes foggy windows you may ask? It’s likely due to faulty seals. Seal failure can be due to issues during the manufacturing process. They could also have been damaged during the installation process. Typically, seals fail over time as a result of the normal wear and tear that occurs with changing seasons and extreme temperature or moisture conditions. And unchecked condensation can also contribute to the deterioration of your window seals.
Higher Energy Bills
Who likes to waste money? “No one” is likely the universal response and it stands to reason, especially in situations where you can actually have some control in the matter. According to the Department of Energy, your faulty windows could be responsible for about 25% – 30% of your overall heating and cooling use throughout the year. That’s 25% – 30% less for you to go towards things you need to do (like maintaining your home) or maybe things you really want (like that long overdue vacation).
A window that fits these criteria could suffer from a number of performance issues caused by a number of factors.
When we say “radiation” we mean any transference of heat through the glass. Radiation is the biggest offender when it comes to heat loss, up to ⅔ as a matter of fact! Let’s say you have a window with “dual panes” (basically an inside pane of glass and one on the outside). When you’re heating your home, the inner glass pane will absorb heat produced by your HVAC system and transmit it to the outer pane (which is cool) through a process called conduction and convection. Newer windows are manufactured to take this process into consideration and use technology to help reduce the amount of radiation that occurs from conduction and convection.
As with any product made up of multiple pieces, there does exist the possibility for air to leak through, either pulling conditioned air out or bringing unwanted outside air in. Take operating windows for instance. They’re great for bringing fresh air in and really help make cleaning a breeze (see what we did there). However, over time, those parts that operate may have a tendency to lose their ability to seal tightly. And heat can be lost around the actual window frame, as well especially if the windows weren’t installed properly in the first place.
While it may sound very scientific, it’s just another way of describing how the sun’s rays can directly transmit through the glass itself. The glass essentially absorbs these harmful rays and creates a similar situation to the radiation described earlier, albeit in reverse. Now the heat from the outside interferes with maintaining a consistent cooling temperature inside.
Looking at this from a broader perspective, with a general movement towards eradicating climate change, any energy wasted puts us further behind in meeting the challenges that lie ahead for larger conversation goals.
Energy-efficient windows that are ENERGY STAR rated can make a huge impact on avoiding these issues in the first place.
You Just Need to Make a Change
It’s believed that on average, homeowners tend to stay in their homes about thirteen years, so it’s easy to imagine that during that time you may want to make some changes or tackle a serious home improvement project. Now, it’s your home we’re talking about so the latest fad might not be something to consider, but there are a number of ways to update your living space that can stand the test of time a bit better. We’ve covered this topic at length in another blog post, so you can check that out here.
So there you have it. Now you know when to replace your windows and start your journey to enjoying a maintenance-free lifestyle. To schedule a FREE consultation with one of our window and door experts, just give us a call, drop us an e-mail, or reach out on social media.