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Replacing inefficient old windows

Replacing Old Windows With Energy Efficient New Windows

Your windows are one of the most important features of your home. Replacing inefficient old windows with energy-efficient new windows can save you money in the winter and help keep your house cooler in the summer.

Fog and condensation are signs that the seal between window panes is failing. New replacement windows are designed with dual- or triple-pane insulated glass, to reduce thermal transfer.

Decaying Frames

Old windows often show signs of wear and tear. Over time uPVC frames expand in warm weather and contract in cold temperatures causing them to become distorted, warped or cracked. This will reduce their ability to insulate your home and creates an ideal environment for mildew, dirt and pollen.

Similarly wooden window frames will soften with age and eventually rot. This will leave gaps in the frame which allow air to escape your home. Whether it is a small leak in the window casing or an old timber window that is no longer opening properly, these problems need to be addressed.

New windows can be made of uPVC, aluminium or a combination with timber. It is important to consider the embodied energy of these materials and the impact on the environment before making a decision to replace existing windows. Relatively simple repairs and the addition of storm windows can improve energy efficiency to match, if not exceed, new replacements.

Leaky Windows

During storms water leaking through windows can cause rot and mold. This issue is most likely caused by old caulking or sealant. If you notice that your window leaks when it rains it’s time to call in a window installation specialist for a repair or replacement.

Leaky windows also contribute to higher heating and cooling bills. Replacing them with new double-pane windows that have Low-E glass and argon gas will save energy and cut down on energy costs.

If you have a double-paned window and see condensation between the panes this is a sign that the argon gas has escaped. Window professionals can gauge the level of argon gas in your windows with a special tool and replace it. This is more expensive than just defogging the windows but will pay for itself in energy savings. Alternatively, you could switch to newer double-pane windows that have a welded frame and no gap between the panes.

Fog and Condensation

Foggy windows can be a serious problem. It not only causes discomfort and reduces the efficiency of a window but can result in mold and mildew on drywall if left unchecked. This can add up to significant repair and renovation costs over time.

Generally, when a window is fogging up it means that there is a problem with the seal of an insulated double or triple pane window. This is a sign that the gas between the windows has escaped or that the spacer between the glass has saturated with water.

This can be fixed by boring holes in the windows and installing moisture venting valves. However, this makes the windows less effective and they won’t last as long as a new replacement. It’s usually better to get rid of old windows and invest in new ones that will obstruct the transfer of heat into and out of your home. This will reduce your energy bills and also save you money on repairs.

Poor Aesthetics

Inefficient windows cause drafts, leaking energy and high home heating and cooling costs. New windows not only improve a home’s energy efficiency, but they can also increase its curb appeal and add value to the property.

Older windows can leak air through a process called window convection. Cool air escapes during the summer and warm air leaks in during the winter, causing your HVAC system to work harder to keep your home at an optimal temperature.

New windows offer a range of energy-saving features, from double pane glass to Low-E coatings and gas fills. By reducing heat transfer and insulating your home, these windows can significantly cut your energy bills.

When compared to the embodied energy of the new windows, however, retaining and repairing historic windows is often the “greener” choice. For more information, consult your builder or contractor. When measuring for width, position the tape measure on both sides of the frame at the bottom, middle and top, then write down the smallest measurement.