Windows are amongst a home’s most important features, yet they are often overlooked when it comes to regular upkeep. In fact, many homeowners’ everyday actions could even be causing damage to windows. Here are some of those habits you need to avoid.
The Right Track
If you’re being met with resistance when you try to open and close sliding windows, it could be due to deposits of dirt and dust that have accumulated in the window tracks. Check the sash where it meets the frame for any debris, and if that’s the case, consult your window manufacturer’s recommendations for proper cleaning. Failing to keep the tracks clean can eventually lead to corrosion, so add this to your regular cleaning routine.
Blind to Moisture
The blinding effect produced when sun bounces off snow causes many homeowners to leave curtains and blinds down during winter. However, doing so on a long-term basis prevents airflow around the window that is necessary for absorbing the condensation that forms when warm interior air meets the cold glass. When that moisture is trapped, it can cause mold and mildew to grow and eventually lead to rotting of the frame. It also puts the health of family members at risk, especially those with mold allergies or breathing difficulties.
When frames become damaged due to fungal growth and rot, they will need to be replaced. If that occurs in your home, Schaefer Exteriors carries high-quality vinyl replacement windows by Simonton. These windows are affordable, attractive, durable, energy efficient, and look great in any home.
Avoid the Draft
Perhaps the most common window problem is that of air leaks, yet many homeowners forget to regularly check for drafts. Leaky windows not only impact a home’s energy efficiency and heat gain/loss, but also invite excess moisture to form on and around the windows, thereby increasing the risk of mold growth. It’s advised to check around windows in spring and fall to find any drafts, and repair or replace weatherstripping as needed.
Watch What You Wash
Power washing is an efficient way of cleaning some home exteriors, but be careful to steer clear of windows as the high water pressure coming out of washers, and even garden hoses, can damage the window unit. It is best to cover windows with plastic sheeting and painter’s tape before power washing since some cleaning solutions contain harsh chemicals that may cause corrosion to the frame. This also could damage the window seal, resulting in moisture being trapped between the panes. This will significantly reduce the window’s energy efficiency.
Lock It Down
Windows are designed to prevent air from entering or exiting the home, yet when individuals leave windows unlocked it prevents the window from providing that protection. The simple act of latching windows forms a seal between the weatherstripping and the sash, preventing air leaks and reducing the risk of condensation and mold growth, as well as decreasing the amount of outdoor noise entering the house.
Windows perform an important role for a home, so it’s worth investing a little time and effort to keep them in peak condition. Generally, windows will last between 20 and 25 years, but with consistent and quality maintenance, you can extend that lifespan even further. But when the time comes that you need replacement windows, give Schaefer Exteriors a call. Our window installation teams are available in Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, northern Virginia, and eastern West Virginia. Call us toll-free at 888-781-4028.