The decision to replace the windows in your home is a big one. How do you know if it’s really necessary? With time and use, windows wear out. They can become less energy efficient and begin to break down structurally. There are a few definite signals that will let you know if it is time to replace your windows.
1. Windows Become Drafty
All windows will let a little bit of air into and out of your home, but you should not be able to detect a draft. If you can, then the windows are letting too much air through. Over many years of use windows can become warped or the frames can become loose which would allow too much air to pass through. If this happens your heating and cooling system will have to work harder to keep your indoor temperature at a comfortable level. That will cause your energy bills to be higher, which is a sure sign that the windows need to be replaced. Weather stripping is a temporary remedy for this problem, but since sealants expand and contract, the leaks will not be sealed for very long.
“Passivhaus Fenster Beispiele” by Passivhaus Institut – Copied to Commons from http://en.wikipedia.org. Original source Passivhaus Institut, Germany – http://www.passiv.de. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons.
2. Difficulty Opening and Closing the Windows
This sign is a pretty obvious one. Clearly, if you cannot open or close your windows they are no longer useful and need to be replaced. Wooden windows can warp and cause them not to go up and down. Metal windows, when not properly painted can rot or rust, which can also cause them not to operate properly as well. Double hung and triple hung windows utilize a balance system that allows them to move up and down. If this malfunctions the windows might suddenly slam shut, which is hazardous.
3. Condensation Between Panes on Double or Triple Paned Windows
If there is condensation, fog or even white calcium deposits between the panes of glass in triple or double paned windows, it is a sign that the seal between them may have been broken. This means that the glass is no longer insulating against the outdoor temperatures. In cases like this, the windows, or at least the panes of glass must be replaced.
4. High Heating and Cooling Costs
If your heating and cooling costs are high, old and inefficient windows may be the cause. If the windows in your home are very old they are probably not energy efficient. In the long run, replacing the old windows with new, energy efficient windows will save you enough money on your utility bills to pay for themselves.
The benefits of installing energy efficient windows is great and well worth the investment. Search for a local window company in your area. Ask plenty of questions and get a quote from at least two local businesses.