High-quality windows serve many purposes within a home, from ventilation and temperature control to noise reduction, aesthetics and more. If your windows are wearing down or showing issues in any of these areas, however, it may be time for replacement — but knowing the right signs and timing is important here, both for your window quality itself and for your wallet.
At Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors, we’re proud to offer a variety of window installation services in Utah, including window materials like aluminum, vinyl, wood-clad and several others. We’re also here to assist our clients who are looking to determine whether now is the right time for replacement, or whether they might be able to get by with some repairs for the time being. Here are five indicators that your windows have crossed the efficient repair threshold and should be replaced when possible.
Drafting and Efficiency Concerns
Perhaps the single most common reason homeowners replace their windows today is due to drafts or other efficiency problems. If you’ve noticed an increasing number of drafts in your home, or if other people have commented on it as well, there’s a good chance your windows could be to blame. If you’re noticing temperature and comfort issues due to drafts, it’s time for replacement — and the sooner you do this, the more money you can save on energy costs moving forward!
There are two specific common situations we want to highlight that often signal drafting or efficiency problems:
- Single-pane windows: If your home is still outfitted with single-pane windows — especially large ones such as floor-to-ceiling windows or patio doors — it’s likely time for an upgrade. Newer double- or triple-pane windows can easily save you hundreds of dollars on your annual heating and cooling bills, so the longer you put off replacement, the more money you’ll ultimately be spending.
- Fading interior: Have you begun to notice that wood floors and furniture are fading in areas where the sun is entering the home through your windows? This is another telltale sign of inefficient windows, and it can cause other issues like wood rot over time. Once again, though, newer windows will remove this issue entirely by adding thermal protection inside your insulated glass, blocking harmful UV rays before they impact pieces inside your home.
Trouble Opening and Closing
Operating your windows should be simple and easy, with no need for excessive force or tugging when you want them open or closed. If your windows stick when you’re opening and closing them, it’s likely because the weatherstripping around them has worn out — which in turn causes drafts, moisture problems and other issues that should be addressed by replacement.
Now, you should take a few minutes in these situations to ensure no smaller concern is causing opening and closing issues. Some window hinges might just need lubrication, for instance, or it could be that a window has become misaligned with its sash. However, if your windows are still sticky months after you’ve tried lubricating their hinges and repairing any misalignments, replacement is likely your best course of action.
Significant Outdoor Noise
Another major sign that might indicate it’s time for new windows: Significant noise coming from outside. For example, if you are finding that the sound of traffic is disrupting your interior environments — especially on the other side of your wall or window — it’s very likely that your windows have become worn down and need replacing to remedy this issue.
Noise from construction sites can carry even more easily through thin walls, but this isn’t the only major source of noise. If you’re hearing more and more noise inside your home from neighbors, pets, walkways or other sources, it’s time to have new windows installed to cut down on the disruption.
Specific Forms of Damage
Certain kinds of minor window damage, such as a broken hinge or a damaged opening device, can often be replaced for a relatively low cost. However, there are also certain other kinds of damage that are more cost-effective to simply replace, including:
- Broken glass: If your windows have cracked, spiderwebbed or otherwise shattered, especially if you can’t simply replace the pane (or even multiple panes) of glass for a single window but need to replace the entire unit, it’s time for replacement. Not only will it be cheaper in this case, but also safer and more energy-efficient in the long run! Broken glass is not only a safety hazard, but also a potential entry point for pests and other creatures, so it should be addressed immediately.
- Fogging windows: Window fog and condensation are also common signs of replacement need. To be specific, condensation between panes of insulating glass signals an issue with sealing and moisture infiltration, and these issues are usually significant enough that you’ll need to replace the window.
Curb Appeal and Style Considerations
Finally, for those who care about their property value and related curb appeal themes, new windows can make a huge difference. Worn out or inefficient units not only take away from the comfort of your home, but they also detract from its overall value. If you’re considering putting your property on the market in future, new replacement windows will likely be worth the investment down the road. They help you establish a design vision for your home and make it a better long-term investment, very likely increasing the value of your property over time.
Even if you’re only moderately concerned with your property value and investment areas, many homeowners go with window replacement for style and aesthetic reasons alone. Older windows can often become worn down and outdated, so it’s a great opportunity to think about updating the overall feel of your home with new windows.
Of course, there are several other factors you’ll need to consider too — including the types of energy you want to use for heating and cooling, how much privacy you prefer, what amount of light is most suitable for your family, and other factors that may be relevant to your home.
For more on the signs it might be time for window replacement, or to learn about any of our window or door services, speak to the staff at Rocky Mountain Windows & Doors today.