If you live in an older home, or you’ve noticed too many drafts in the winter months, it might be time to upgrade your windows to new, energy-efficient units. Maybe you’re looking to build your dream home. Regardless, there’s much to learn about what new windows can do for you. Read more about the 7 things your windows are trying to tell you from Popular Mechanics. But you might be asking yourself, how do I know if my windows are still good or not?
How to know if your windows need to be replaced
There are a number of reasons why you might need replacement windows.
Here are a few reasons why you might decide your home’s windows and/or sliding doors could use a facelift.
- Your older home’s windows are too drafty.
With age, all homes need fixes and upgrades. Time is just tough on the moving parts of a home. Windows might be one area where you’ve noticed just a bit too much wind whistling through in the winter, or air conditioning escaping during the summer. Or maybe you have wooden windows that have rotted or no longer open. The weatherproofing installed around your previous windows might also have failed and needs replacing.
- Your energy bill seems high.
Your heating and cooling system should give you relatively stable prices for the seasons. After living in your home for a few years, you should know what to expect when you check your bill. But if your windows, doors or skylight windows are letting in too much outside air during the hot and cold times of the year, your HVAC system works overtime, and your bill inches up. Failing appliances may also be the source, but if you’ve ruled those out, check your windows.
- You’re upgrading other parts of your home, and the windows don’t match.
Whether you’re replacing siding or demolishing the interior of your home to redo, it might be more convenient to replace your windows now, rather than wait unit you need to fix those that have failed. Or maybe your old windows are casement windows and you prefer hung windows. Whatever your reason, sometimes it just makes more sense for your family to do it all at once instead of piecemeal.
Condensation on windows: what does it mean?
Many people mistakenly assume that seeing condensation inside the window along the sash means that the window itself is the problem.
This may be true, but it actually might mean that you have too much humidity inside your home. You might try monitoring your humidity and regulating it to an appropriate level to reduce your condensation.
For more details about how to reduce your humidity, and how energy-efficient windows can help, Midway Windows has a great page full of information.
How to calculate your energy savings
More than anything else, replacing your windows is a great way to make an energy-efficient choice for your home. It’s a big investment to upgrade from your old set of windows, especially if you choose to do the whole home.
In our Michigan climate, upgrading from single-pane windows to ENERGY-STAR windows could save you $377 a year. If you’re upgrading from double-paned, clear glass windows, your savings would be around $78 annually.
For more information about the energy performance ratings of windows, including U-factor, SHGC, VT and LSG, energy.gov has collected and consolidated it all for you.
Thoughts about window upgrades
Alternatively, it might be worth your time to speak with a professional to come evaluate your windows. Check and see if the interior parts (like cranks or springs) can be replaced on your current windows to make them work like new. Or, tracks and parts could be dry or wet lubricated to increase their functionality.
At Hall Vanhaitsma Exteriors, we usually recommend the Alliance window series from Midway Windows. For more information about what windows would be the best fit for your home, or for a free estimate, contact us at our website, HVext.com.