Windows provide a view of the world along with protecting and insulating your home. They are also possible entry points of unwanted air, moisture & pests. Locks and latches may weaken & screens may tear. Windows should be inspected regularly to prevent such occurrences. You can follow a few steps to ensure your windows are in the best shape!
- Inspect both sides.
Take a close look the exterior finishes of your windows. Note any stains, rust, flaking paint, broken glass or damaged frames. Inside, check for discoloration along the walls, sills, floors or ceilings that might be caused by a leak. Any damage caused by a leak should be repaired as soon as possible.
- Dirt or Debris?
If your tracks are polluted with contaminants such as sand, leaves, dirt or debris, they can weaken the airtight seal of your windows. Always try to keep the tracks clean. You can use a vacuum to access harder to reach areas. Test for uneven sliding or sticking, this may be a sign of a warped or damaged frame.
- Locks and Latches
Test your locks and latches for security. If a window latch or lock doesn’t function properly it can put your safety at risk. If your lock or latch gets stuck or is loose, repair or replace it immediately.
- Caulk and Weather Stripping
A series of seals and weather stripping help improve the efficiency of your windows. Examine these areas for damage and if you notice portions that are ripped, worn, or torn loose—replace them.
- Clear Window Drains
Clear your window drains. These are small holes located at the bottom of your window, allowing moisture to flow out and air to flow in. If these drains get blocked, water may seep into the wood of the sill and result in rot and mold.
- Water Damage?
Signs of water damage include discoloration, spots, peeling paint, and warped frames. If you see signs of water damage inside or outside your home you want to find the root of the problem and have it repaired.
- Seal Failures
Test your windows for leaks. Shut off the HVAC system and all ceiling fans. Close all exterior windows and doors in your home and run the exhaust vents. Then light a candle or incense stick and run it around the frame of windows and doors. If the flame or smoke pulls towards you that is a sign of an air leak. Leaks are common in windows older than 15 years and it is time to start thinking about replacement windows.