Windows are a critical element of both your home’s curbside appearance and its overall energy efficiency, so it’s important to give your windows some regular attention to help make sure they’re delivering the performance you need, and will continue to do so for as long as possible! Let’s explore a few bits of sage advice that will help you to prolong the life of your windows.
Frequent Cleaning of the Inside
Cleaning the windows may not be on your top 10 list of most exciting activities, but regular Cleaning of the inside of your windows will keep them clearer and easier to see through. Don’t just limit yourself to the glass, either. Giving a quick cleaning to the window casing and surrounding walls will help reduce dirt and dust build-up around the windows, and will also help to keep potentially damaging mold, mildew, and fungus at bay, too.
Occasional Cleaning of the Outside
You don’t always need to clean the outsides of your windows when you clean the insides, but they do need Occasional Cleaning, nonetheless. Windows on the ground level usually aren’t that hard to access from the exterior, but older, single-hung windows can be more of a challenge to get to, especially if it means having to climb a ladder. An easier solution is to opt for double-hung windows that can be tilted for easier cleaning and maintenance. This design makes it easier to access both the interior and exterior of your windows from inside your home – no more ladders!
Take a Closer Look When the Seasons Change
Periodically, you should take a closer look at each of your windows. A good rule of thumb is to inspect your windows at the beginning of every season. You’ll want to check the condition of your window frame and sash and look for any signs of sticking windows or rot. Don’t forget to check the glass for cracks, too. And if you don’t notice any cracks but do see signs of moisture inside double or triple-paned windows, that’s an indication that your window seal may have become compromised and needs some attention.
Check for Insects and Nests
Bees and hornets sometimes like to build nests behind or around window shutters, and wasps can set up shop between three-piece storm windows. Ladybugs can also nest in window channels, which can make your windows harder to operate. Remove any insects or nest you find, and you’ll keep your windows in better working order.
Lubricate the Tracks
Even windows that seem to be in otherwise good working order can start to stick. Good preventative maintenance includes lubricating the hardware for your windows (and doors, too) once in a while. Follow your window manufacturer’s recommendations and use the appropriate lubricant to ease up strap hinges, handles, locks, and cranks (if your windows have them). Lubricating these items just once a year will keep them moving smoothly and will also help prevent unnecessary wear and tear.
Examine and Reinforce the Seals and Joints
While you want your windows to be able to open and close freely, what you don’t want is air or moisture infiltrating around your windows. When you do your periodic window inspections, make sure you’re also checking the sealant and caulk. It’s very important that your windows include the right amount of surrounding insulation to help protect your home from the extremes of both temperature and moisture. Any weak seals or missing caulk needs to be addressed immediately, either by you or by a trained window professional.
When Should I Paint?
If your window exteriors are clad in metal or wood, it’s a good idea to repaint the frames every three or four years depending on the weather in your area. This will help to protect them from water, wind, and weathering, and will add to the overall visual appeal of your home. Make sure not to paint over any moving components; you don’t want to seal your windows shut! And if you have vinyl-clad windows, good news! Weather-resistant vinyl doesn’t ever need painting, staining or refinishing!
What If I Discover Some Damage?
If during the course of your cleaning and inspection you discover that your windows do need some TLC, it’s best not to sit on that. The longer your windows go without repair or replacement, the more potential damage can occur as a result. On top of that, damaged or underperforming windows mean that your HVAC system is having to work harder than necessary too, which also means higher energy bills. Here are a few telltale signs you should look for:
- Windows jamming or sticking
- Noticeable drafts around windows
- Condensation inside the window panes
- Visible cracks in windows or gaps around the windows
- Higher levels of humidity inside your home
- Rising heating and air conditioning costs
Let Skywalker Roofing Serve Your Windows Repair and Replacement Needs
Of course, no matter how often you clean or inspect your windows on your own, there’s no substitute for letting a trained professional come out to take a look and help you to objectively assess your needs. The pros at Skywalker Roofing would be glad to come out for a FREE home consultation. If it turns out that you do need to consider some windows replacement options, Skywalker Roofing can help you find the best solution that will both meet your needs AND fit within your budget
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