Window Leaks are Worse for Your Home than You Thought

Does your utility company send you a monthly breakdown of your energy consumption? If you’ve noticed that you’re slowly starting to pay a little more each month, it’s natural to wonder why – and if there’s anything you can do about it.
One of the most common — and insidious — causes of growing energy bills are window leaks. Beyond wasting energy, leaks can also cause mold and mildew to flourish, which may worsen asthma and lead to other health issues. If that leak gets into the walls, your wooden supports can start to rot. Trace this leak a few steps further, and you may even experience foundation problems.   In fact, leaks in your home are such a serious concern that the EPA has its eyes on the issue! You can wait and celebrate their National Fix A Leak Week this March 14-20, but if you suspect you have a leak in your home, it’s time to take action now. So what are your first steps?
 

Do your detective work.

It starts with a hunch—you walk past a certain window and get a chill up your spine. Are you feeling a draft? It’s time to inspect your windows for leaks.  There are a few strategies here. The simplest is to conduct a thorough examination of your windows. Are they difficult to close completely? If they jiggle or need extra muscle to close, then you may have a sash that is leaking. Are you seeing any small gaps around the frame? Are there cracks in the glass? Take a look. If your visual inspection is negative, then it’s on to the candle test. Seal up your home as tightly as you can — close and lock all your windows and doors, close your vents and dampers and turn off any exhaust fans. Next, light a small candle and take a walk around. If there are leaks or drafts, the candle flame will blow to one side and show you. Another tell-tale sign is watching your curtain sheers. If you see movement even when the windows are closed, your house isn’t haunted — it’s leaking.  You can make an inspection the next time it rains. Do the seams of your windows feel damp after a storm? Your window has small leaks. 

How did the leak get there? 

If this were a detective case, then the next stage would be finding a motive. Why are your windows leaking? How did this happen?  Over time, windows wear out. If you have wooden windows, moisture may have caused them to warp. Sealing components play an important part in a window’s function, and those can break down over time. Or, it could simply be that your windows weren’t installed correctly in the first place. A good window should last a long time, protect you from the elements, and save you money on your home energy bills. But a window that’s leaking isn’t doing its job anymore.     

It’s time to take action.

If you suspect that your window sealing components are the cause of your leak, recaulking and weather stripping might be the way to go. This DIY route may not be for beginners, but depending on your skill level, it can buy you a little more time. You can find instructional videos and articles on the internet. Research resealing thoroughly before diving in.  For real peace of mind, don’t go with the band-aid solution. Call the pros. Window Nation is a national leader in home window installation. When you go with certified and experienced window experts, you can trust that your windows will hold up over time and keep your home comfortable no matter the weather. It’s time to plug up those leaks, save money on your energy bills, and avoid future structural problems. Schedule a quick and easy virtual consultation, or contact us for a free in-home consultation and estimate today.

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