Windows are an incredibly important aspect of keeping you safe from the outside elements, such as bugs, animals, pollen, extreme temperatures, and weather events. That’s why you need to address the damage done to your windows quickly to ensure their structural integrity remains intact. If your windows have suffered storm damage, you should learn the signs and causes of that damage.
Sometimes window damage is fairly obvious, such as in the case of a shattered windowpane. However, some window damage can be difficult to detect, and this can cause a much larger underlying problem that will likely come up later. Window damage can cause issues that weaken the structure of your home and cost you much more money in the long run. This is why it’s necessary to understand the signs of storm damage. You can evaluate the structural integrity of your windows and home yourself, preserving your safety and comfort. By learning the signs of damage, you can more effectively know when you need to call an expert to deal with the effects of storm damage on your windows.
Types of Storm Damage
It’s important to keep yourself and your loved ones safe from hazards during and after a storm. While it’s important to check the integrity of your house, be sure you’re doing so safely.
Before checking for any damage from a storm, make sure the storm has passed and that it’s safe to be outside. Also, check around you for downed power lines, flooding, and electrical dangers. In those situations, stay away or inside, and call emergency services.
Always be careful of hazards on and around your roof after a storm, too, as tree branches and other debris may have been deposited on your roof. The debris isn’t often stable. If you see loose or fallen shingles, fallen trees, or similar signs of roof damage, act accordingly and be aware of the potential hazard.
There are several types of storm damage that can cause problems for your home. When checking your windows for damage, some is going to be more obvious than others, so keep an eye out. You’ll also want to learn the things you can do to repair your windows if needed and know when you need professional assistance.
- Wind Damage
High winds are likely to knock over trees. Often, this causes roof damage, but sometimes this can even shatter windows. When you’ve dealt with a heavy windstorm, be sure to check for shattered or broken windowpanes, as well as cracks or holes in the glass. Also, survey the frames and siding for chips, denting, or other damage. In these cases, your best bet is to contact a professional because even a slightly weakened glass pane is going to be vulnerable in the next stormy weather event.
- Hail Damage
Hail isn’t hard to spot, and neither is hail damage. You can easily hear the ice chunks hitting your roof and ground, and depending on the size, it can leave dents and other damage. It’s very easy for hail to break windows. It can also tear and break screens, crack the glazing, or dent the flashing above the window frame. If screen tears are small enough, a patch could be sufficient to restore their function. Larger issues and damage will need the attention of an expert, especially in the event of cracked or shattered glass.
- Water Damage
While both hail and wind damage are very easy to spot and diagnose, water damage is much more difficult. If left unattended, water damage can cause mold growth, which can lead to health problems. Over time, excess moisture can also start to weaken the structural integrity of your home. It’s important to vigilantly look for leaking, flooding, and other storm damage.
Check for moisture build-up or fog between your windowpanes that could indicate a crack in the glass or its insulation. Look at your walls and ceiling for cracked and peeling paint or yellow spots and other discoloration. Also, check your attic for leaks, dampness, or a musty smell. Examine your floorboards for gaps, curling, and sogginess. These all point to potential water damage that may be caused by damage to and failure of your windows. If you can’t find the source of the water damage, it can be useful for the long-term integrity of your house to call a professional.
Window Repair and Replacement
When dealing with the aftermath of window damage, make sure you’re still being safe. Be sure to document the damage to your windows and clean up immediate hazards for your own safety. Then, you may want to look into submitting an insurance claim and contacting a professional window repair and replacement service. If you have window damage that needs to be repaired from storm damage, you likely want an expert’s opinion to know whether you’ll want window repair or complete replacement.
Whether you need window repair or replacement depends on the severity of the damage, and how complicated the repair might be. Repair is the best solution for smaller issues, and replacement is likely needed if the damage is more extensive. If your windows sustained damage because they’re older, window replacement may be in order regardless of the severity. That way, you can be more protected against future damage and install more energy-efficient windows.
Durable Windows for Storms and Adverse Weather
If you need window repair or replacement thanks to storm damage or are looking for windows with high durability against storms, it’s helpful to know what windows to select to avoid future damage. Many newer window styles are made of stronger, more durable materials and are constructed for longevity.
Hardwearing vinyl frames for replacement windows are a good choice because they can withstand the elements for many years. Wood frames tend to deteriorate very easily. They also need a lot of waterproof staining and painting to maintain them and prevent moisture from getting inside. This isn’t a problem with vinyl windows, and they stand the test of time with minimal upkeep.
You can also look for double or triple-pane windows, which have better insulation, offer more protection in stormy weather, and can help protect you against shattered glass. The more secure your windows are, the less susceptible they are to breaking from hail, falling branches, or other debris.