Windows are essential components of any home. They do much more than allow light and breeze into your home; they also play crucial roles in maintaining comfortable temperatures inside all year long. Like any other part of a home, windows will eventually start to lose their effectiveness and may require repair or replacement eventually. Older homes with their original windows are especially vulnerable to temperature issues from cracked and broken seals, gaps between windows and their frames, and leaks that allow air to escape.
When your windows are allowing cold air to leak outside during the summer months, it’s vital to address the problem as soon as possible. This issue not only leads to uncomfortable temperatures inside your home but also forces your home’s air conditioning system to work much harder than it should to maintain an acceptable temperature range. Eventually, this will not only cause higher energy bills for your home but also increase the likelihood of an equipment breakdown that necessitates an expensive repair.
How to Check Your Windows for Leaks
Most homeowners know that it’s easier to detect window leaks during the winter by feeling cold air seeping in through cracks and gaps, but it’s easier to apply weatherstripping and new caulk in the summer. As you prepare your home for the hot weather, it’s important to check your windows and make sure that cool air is not leaking out, and that hot air is not making its way inside your home.
There are a few methods you can employ to locate window leaks throughout your home. One approach is by using an incense stick. Light it, wait for the incense smoke to start rising, and gently move it around the perimeter of each window. If the smoke stops flowing directly upward and starts blowing to the side at a particular point, you have found a leak.
You can also perform tactile and visual inspections. If you can shake a window easily and cause it to rattle, it is not as tight as it should be. During the sunniest time of the day, check around your windows for any visible daylight. If you notice either of these problems, it’s vital to determine the best method to address them. Older windows that rattle in their frames may require complete replacement by a professional window installation team. Other less severe issues like small gaps and cracks may only require minimal touchup work.
Fixing Leaks in Your Windows
A few different methods can allow you to fix the leaks around your windows, which can help keep your home cooler this summer:
- Install weather stripping. Weatherstrips are small pieces of adhesive-backed foam insulation. They are inexpensive and easy to apply, and you can use them to seal doors and windows throughout your home. Make sure after installation that the window or door can still open and/or swing freely, but seals tightly when closed.
- Try foam tape. Similar to weather strips, foam tape is an adhesive-backed puffy foam that is a fantastic insulator. This tape is straightforward to apply and perfect for sealing the bottoms of windows. Simply cut it to the length of the bottom of the lower window sash and apply it. When you close the window, the tape will compress and form an airtight seal while still allowing you to close and latch the window.
- Try window film. If you have an older home with the original windows, or you simply want to control the level of sunlight coming into your home through your windows, window film can be a great option. This substance works as both an insulator and a method of light control. It applies easily to clean glass, and you can cut it to fit virtually any size window.
- Re-caulk your windows. Window caulk acts as a finisher and a sealant, used in the grooves that form between the windows and their frames to maintain a tight and reliable seal. Over time, caulk will deteriorate or start to fall away from the windows. Check your windows’ caulk lines to determine if they require replacement. If the caulk is peeling away from either the window itself or the frame, it’s time to remove the old caulk and replace it.
These methods can help you preserve your windows for longer and lengthen their functional lifespans. It’s important to remember that if you find yourself adjusting and repairing your windows regularly, and encounter new issues with your windows every year, you should consider having new windows installed this summer.
Why You Might Want to Consider New Windows for the Summer
When most homeowners think of when they might need new windows, winter is typically the first thing that comes to mind. No one wants cold air to get into the home, but allowing warm air inside during the summer can make things uncomfortable and more expensive, too. If you want to stay cool this summer and prevent your air conditioner from overtaxing itself, installing new windows in your home can be a cost-effective and reliable solution.
Inspect the windows throughout your home carefully and see if they might only require a few little touch ups you can manage yourself. If you think your windows need more than just light repairs or there are issues that you do not feel comfortable addressing on your own, contact a professional window installation team you trust to inspect your windows and recommend the best possible solutions to the problems.
Choosing to install new windows in your home can be an aesthetic upgrade, as well as a functional one. If you have wanted to replace older windows for a long time, or if you simply want to take advantage of newer window technology throughout your home, have more control over the airflow throughout every floor, and ultimately keep energy costs as low as possible, new windows can be the ideal upgrade for your home this summer. Reliable and fully sealed windows help you maintain comfortable temperatures all year long