Stuffy atmosphere, faded furniture and ornaments, and high energy bills may all be signs that your home’s windows are harboring some issues. Aside from compromising comfort and energy efficiency, substandard and damaged windows could be costing you more than you think. In this post, we’ll take a look at the most common problems that windows have, when to seek help and who you can call for help.
Most Common Window Problems
CRACKED GLASS. A very common problem among older windows, especially those with single panes and don’t have protective coating.
Here are some of the most common problems that windows may suffer from:
- Cracked Glass. Glass is inherently fragile so it’s not unusual for cracks to be common in windows. Probably the most obvious of window problems, cracked glass can be caused by extreme weather conditions, external threats, and misuse. Aside from being a safety hazard, it impedes views and can cause a rise in your energy bill as it negatively affects your home’s insulation.
- Misaligned Glass Panes. Unfortunately, not all glass problems are easy to identify. For instance, double-glazed windows are supposed to have a small space between the glass panes. Misalignment leads to panes touching, leading to minute scratches that reduce visibility.
- Leaking Gas Fills. Another window problem that’s not easily identifiable is a gas fill leak in multi-pane windows. Gas fills are there to insulate windows, stunting heat transfer that can get in the way of stable indoor temperature. When the seals keeping the gas fill in place collapse or get damaged, a window’s insulative and energy-efficient properties are greatly reduced. Heat transfer not only contributes to higher energy bills but can also damage furniture, artwork, and carpeting.
- Mechanical and Operational Issues. Mechanical, or moving, parts in windows are also a prime source of problems. The more moving parts there are, the higher the likelihood of operational issues so those who own casements, double hungs, and sliding windows should be on the lookout. Like other window problems, mechanical and operational issues can be kept at bay with proper maintenance.
FOGGY WINDOW. Condensation inside multi-pane windows means compromised insulation.
- Condensation. Another very common window problem is condensation, which forms when moisture gets trapped between the glass panes. This usually means that the window seal has cracked, letting moisture in. If condensation forms outside the glass pane, it could mean that the home is too humid and the window glass has subpar insulation ability.
When to Call a Professional?
Once you notice a problem with your windows, contact a professional right away! The sooner a problem is identified, the sooner a solution can be provided. In fact, in some cases, it’s possible for repairs to get a window back into shape. In the event that the damage is too extensive and warrants a replacement, getting in touch with a window expert right away will allow you to stem further damage not only to the window but other parts of your home as well.
It’s not unusual for homeowners to resort to quick fixes but many realize after is that temporary solutions can actually worsen the issue As such, it’s better to call on a professional for more permanent answers to common window problems.
Finding the Right Professional: Who to Call
The problem with calling a professional is that there are way too many so-called “professionals” in the market. Calling the wrong one could end up in frustrations and endless hours of headaches, not to mention wasted time and money.
So, how will you ensure that you’re calling a true professional?
The first way is to contact a specialist instead of a general contractor. In the same way that you’d consult with a doctor specializing in the part of the body ailing you, you’ll be wise to work with a window contractor for your window needs. General contractors can also get the job done but their experience is split into different focuses. A window contractor, on the other hand, will be trained specifically to handle window concerns, giving them the expertise you need to take care of the problem.
THE RIGHT PROFESSIONAL. Complex home improvement projects such as window replacement require more than just a general handyman. You need to hire a reliable window contractor to ensure quality.
Now that you know to call a window specialist or contractor, how exactly do you find them?
One of the best ways to locate one is to go over your window manufacturer’s list of certified contractors. This list will usually be categorized by area so it shouldn’t be too difficult to find window contractors in your locality. It’s also available online so you can easily access it. Opting for a certified contractor is a guarantee that you’re looking at a real expert who has undergone manufacturer-mandated training, ensuring your windows will be installed as needed.
You may also ask for recommendations from friends and family living in your area. They may have had their own windows serviced and replaced before, so they may be able to direct you to reliable window contractors. Take note that you should look for a contractor that operates in your locale. When it comes to home improvement projects such as window replacement and repair, there are local building and climate requirements that need to be followed and considered so it is imperative to hire someone that has a knowledge of those.
Once you have a list of candidates, take the time to learn more about their background and capabilities. Check online customer feedback and testimonials, for one. You may also ask the contractors themselves for a list of previous clients that you can use as reference. Call the people in the list and ask about the contractor’s performance. Where possible, visit past projects and see the contractor’s work yourself.
Window problems can be inconvenient but they don’t have to overwhelm. Know that there are professionals you can turn to keep window issues from ballooning and affecting not just your home’s appearance and function but your family’s health and comfort as well. Remember: the sooner a problem is addressed, the better. If you need more information about window issues, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a reputable window professional in your area.
Alex Esler is a marketing manager for Renewal by Andersen. Always eager to help, she has a positive outlook in life and this spills over in her work as she aids homeowners in finding the right window solutions for their concerns. Committed to sharing her knowledge and experiences to reach more people, she contributes to the company blog. Check it out to get updates from Alex!