Let’s talk about solving your window sealing problems. No homeowner is excited by the idea of replacing a home’s windows. But when the seals give out, you are left with two options. You can either repair them or replace them.
At Lakeside Renovation and Design, we have been completing window replacements in the St. Louis area since 1997, so we know what to look for when determining the level of care your windows need when that seal goes out.
We also know that it can be tempting to feel like you’re avoiding the costs associated with replacement windows by simply resealing them. But a seal is not always the right solution. Knowing the proper steps to take will depend on the current state of your windows. No solution is ever one size fits all because all windows and conditions are different, but knowing what to look for will help you make the right, cost-effective decision.
How Window Seals Fail
Modern windows are designed with insulating gases in the panes to keep airflow to a minimum. They should also be sealed around their exteriors to eliminate drafts. Over time, all windows will eventually experience loss of that interior gas. But some windows fail faster than others.
Window seal failure can come from:
- Mistakes in the manufacturing
- Differential pressure in the air around the windows (which gradually occurs anyway)
- Punctures in the seal during installation from inexperienced installers
- Bends or warping in the frame
- Frame rot
Proper window installation and care are essential to maintaining a tight seal. And as you can see, in some odd circumstances, windows can be damaged before being installed, which makes having, understanding, and holding onto the information about your window’s warranty important.
Signs of Window Seal Failure
Window inspection should be a routine part of your home maintenance. The times you clean your windows are the perfect opportunity to check for seal failure, as you start with a clean slate to observe your windows from.
You should check your window’s perimeters for gaps between the window and the siding. And check the condition of the frame and the glass itself. While there is no definitive test for your windows, here are a few things to look for when taking in the condition of your home.
While even young windows can experience damage and require a full-blown replacement, age is often a good indicator of a window’s predicament. Different types of windows will have different lifespans, but windows that are nearly 20 years or older have likely reached their lifespan, and resealing them simply won’t do the job.
Gaps between Siding and Frame from Warping
If your window frame has been damaged from impact or temperature, the gaps created are causing major damage. Broken and warped frames need to be replaced immediately. Not only is your seal compromised, but moisture has the perfect pathway into your home and siding to create damage.
If certain areas of your home feel colder than others, a seal has likely broken and drafts are allowing unwanted airflow into your home. This is perhaps one of the most prominent indicators of a seal failure, because it can indicate that either the perimeter of your window isn’t tightly sealed or that the window itself is compromised.
If the window seal has failed and allowed an insulating gas leak, no amount of repair will solve the issue. The windows will need to be replaced for your home to experience the proper function. If the perimeter of your window is unsealed, adding a layer of weather stripping or replacing the surrounding caulking can sometimes solve the problem.
Excessive Interior Noise
Insulation doesn’t just prevent unwanted air movement; it helps prevent sound transfer. If the cars whizzing by on the street are louder than normal, it could mean a failed seal. Check your windows in the same manner you would for drafts.
If you observe condensation fogging up a window between its panes, the seal has failed and is allowing moisture to creep into your window and potentially even your siding. But again, once that seal has failed, the only true solution is a replacement.
So, Can Resealing Your Windows Actually Save You Money?
Sealing your windows can provide the illusion of savings. But it’s really a patchwork fix. Once a window has lost insulation, broken its seal, or warped, simply resealing it won’t actually save you money. It may add a temporary level of comfort, but under-insulated windows leak interior air and can cost you immensely in electric bills. Not to mention, warped windows that are not properly repaired lead the way to water damage in your siding, walls, and home interior.
The cost to replace damaged materials, fight mold growth, or (in severe cases) eradicate wood rot can be greater than the upfront cost associated with replacing your windows.
If you require a full replacement, you’ll want to ensure you are making the right investment with windows that will last, look beautiful, and maintain a strong seal. Infinity windows have a specially engineered fiberglass frame that provides incredible strength and other benefits to your home. They resist temperature and moisture damage, helping to maintain their seals.
Update and Elevate Your Windows
Whether you need a full replacement or your windows need to be sealed up tightly, our team is ready to help. Hiring a skilled window contractor for your needs can keep you from excessive, unwarranted repairs. Don’t let improper installation be the reason you need a window replacement.
You deserve to have a home that is both functional and beautiful. Our team listens to your needs, provides the highest level of products like Infinity windows, and delivers an impeccable installation so you can spend each moment in your home enjoying all it has to offer.
Learn more about the benefits having our team install Infinity from Marvin windows can bring.