As a homeowner, it is always concerning when I come across something in my home that is not functioning properly. Chances are if I neglect the small issues when I first recognize them, they will become bigger issues later on and potentially cause more damage and cost more to repair. Window replacement is not an
As a homeowner, it is always concerning when I come across something in my home that is not functioning properly. Chances are if I neglect the small issues when I first recognize them, they will become bigger issues later on and potentially cause more damage and cost more to repair. Window replacement is not an easy do it yourself project and can be an unexpected expense if a window cracks or breaks. So it is no surprise that many homeowners are startled and concerned when they find condensation built up on their windows. However, this is not necessarily a sign of an issue or even a bad thing.
Why does condensation form on windows?
There are two factors that cause condensation to form on windows 1) temperature of the window’s glass surface and 2) the amount of moisture in the air. Air holds moisture, and the warmer the air, the more moisture it can hold. When this warm air hits a cooler surface, the air cools down quickly reducing the amount of moisture it can hold. The discharged water from the air collects on your window as condensation. We have all experienced this same process with our cold drinks on a hot summer’s day.
Can the condensation cause any damage?
Where there is moisture, there is always the potential for damage. Excessive moisture can damage the window casing, drywall, and wood moldings around your windows. Over time the moisture will cause discolouration and stains, but if the wet areas are not able to dry out properly the excessive moisture can lead to mold and mildew. You can classify mold growth most of the time as it appears as black dots and blotches. If left unchecked, this mold can lead to severe issues as it eats away at the material it is growing on. Rotted wood and harshly damaged drywall can be expensive to repair or replace.
Unless there is visible damage like a crack in the glass or a bend in the frame (in which case you will need to replace that window) chances are there is nothing to fix, as your window is doing its job. Keeping the warm air in your home when the furnace is working, leading to condensation on the interior of the glass or keeping the cool air in your home when the AC is working, leading to condensation on the exterior of the glass. But, there are steps you can take to reduce the moisture in your home. Reduced moisture in the air equals less water to be deposited on your windows. Most of the moisture in our home comes from us, even breathing normally adds moisture to the air. Running your fan in the bathroom while showering and the fan in your kitchen while cooking, will pull the steam created from these activities out of your home. Try opening up a few of the windows in your home for even just a few minutes a day. This will help circulate the air in your home and allow for some of the moisture heavy air to escape. Dehumidifiers are relatively inexpensive and can be found at your local hardware or department store. They will also help control the humidity in your home by pulling moisture out of the air, just don’t forget to empty the reservoir every day or two.
For the most part, finding condensation built up on the inside of your windows in the winter or on the outside of your windows in the summer is a fairly normal occurrence. There is no need to call your local window replacement specialist unless you see damage like a crack or bowed window frame. One of the only times condensation is a symptom of a damaged window is when there is condensation found in-between your double or triple-pane windows. This is an indication that the gas has escaped and your efficiency of that window has been compromised.