Though it’s been a warm September so far in West Michigan, another summer is slipping by, and it’s time to think of cleaning the yard, putting away the patio furniture, and getting ready for fall. These jobs are easily remembered, but windows and doors are commonly overlooked. Below are some tips on fall window and door prep.
Clean Moving Parts and Sills
The fall maintenance process should start with a thorough cleaning of the windows’ sills and moving parts. Debris, sand, and dirt can get caught easily, making your windows harder to open and close. Clean them with a dry brush for a tighter seal and enhanced performance.
Late summer and early fall are the right time to reapply sealant or caulk around your home’s doors and windows. To reduce the potential for leaks, focus on areas that are exposed to constant sunlight and other extreme conditions.
Install Snap-In Shades or Blinds
This simple step can help to insulate your home from winter’s coldest temperatures. Some windows come with shades between the glass, which provide additional privacy and energy efficiency.
Replace or Repair Damaged Surfaces
Wood that’s deteriorated or cracked from water penetration may allow cold air or moisture to leak into the home. You should look carefully for signs of leakage and damaged wood should be replaced as soon as possible. You can call us for fast, friendly, accurate and hassle-free window replacement before winter gets here.
Get Energy-Efficient Windows and Doors
If your home currently has clear, single-pane, or old windows and doors, it may cost more to heat your home in winter and cool it during the summer. Replace these old windows with energy-efficient double-pane glass units with insulation, or install a fiberglass door for year-round.
Signs of Leaky, Drafty Windows
In many cases, the best way to deal with draft windows is to replace them. Below are some of the most typical signs of windows that are beyond repair.
- Excessive draftiness: When closed, your windows shouldn’t let so much air in that it’s noticeable. Many people simply add more sealant or weatherstripping, but noticeable drafts signify a serious leak.
- Condensation: If there’s condensation built up in double- or triple-pane windows, it may be worthwhile to replace the entire unit due to seal degradation.
- Broken windows: This sign is one of the most obvious. If your home’s windows are visibly cracked, broken, or difficult to close and open, you should consider a full replacement.
- Excessive noise: If the windows are allowing in too much noise, they may be outdated and in need of replacement. New, more energy-efficient windows keep out cold air and heat, and they’re also meant to keep noise out. If your home’s occupants can hear foot traffic and conversations outside the walls, it may be time to upgrade your home’s windows.
- A rising energy bill: How high was last year’s energy bill? If they seemed out of the norm, it may be because the windows need replacing. Most windows last between 20 and 40 years, and if yours are past that age or getting close, it may make financial sense to replace them.
Do a Smoke Test
An easy way to find a draft in a door or window is to perform a smoke test. This simple step determines which areas of your home may need attention because of tiny air leaks. To do the smoke test, shut all the doors and windows in your home and turn off gas appliances. Turn on kitchen and bathroom ventilation systems to create negative pressure inside the home. Light an incense stick and put it near a door or window to determine which areas are drafty.
Hiring the Right Window Contractor
When you follow these tips for seasonal preparation for windows and doors and you determine that it’s time for an upgrade, you’ll want to call a professional to install your replacement windows. You may be tempted to install new windows yourself, but after over 15 years of installing windows in West Michigan, we know that good window and doors products and proper installation are crucial to getting the most durability and energy efficiency during both the hot and cold extremes we can experience here in Michigan.
With our wealth of window replacement experience, we think you’ll find right away that we have a focus on customer satisfaction. Call today and one of our In-Come Consultants will look at your home’s current windows and doors and find the best way to solve leak issues. Reach out to us to schedule an appointment for a free, no-obligation consultation and quote.