Window Maintenance Tips for the Summer
Summer Maintenance Tips for Windows
Now that summer is nearly here, there are a number of different checklist items that every homeowner should consider. Going through this essential to-do list not only ensures that your house is in working order but can also save on energy costs during the summer and beyond.
One area of particular importance for maintenance is the windows. All too often, homeowners neglect windows before they need replacement, but with a few maintenance tips, windows can last much longer and perform better.
There are several signs that indicate whether windows need complete replacement or just simple, routine maintenance. You may need to replace windows entirely if you notice:
- Frost or condensation buildup from a severe Winter
- Glass feels excessively hot during the summer
- Glass feels excessively cold in the winter
- Air near the window feels much colder or hotter relative to the outdoor temperature
- Window frames are rotting or cracking
- Window panes have noticeable cracks
It always helps to contact a professional installer before committing to window replacement. It may be possible to put off the expense with easy maintenance. Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of your windows:
Through the change of seasons and from wear and tear due to weather, windows and the structure of a house undergo stress and damage. Bending, warping and cracking all can result in drafts.
If there are areas near the windows where there is a particularly strong draft, you should look for any gaps that could use caulk. Movable areas of the windows can also benefit from weather-stripping.
If there are any gaps wider than a nickel, you should caulk these areas with either interior or exterior material depending on their location. First, be sure to clean the area and remove old paint or caulk, as this will ensure appropriate amounts of adhesion.
Any operable parts of the window should have weather-stripping applied to them. When choosing among felt, foam, vinyl and metal, base your decision on where the window is in the house and how exposed it is to the weather outside.
Vinyl and metal, though typically more expensive, are tougher materials and can withstand the stresses of wind and rain. Felt and foam can be suitable for windows well-covered by awnings. As well, be sure to apply weather-stripping on the home’s exterior doors.
Awnings and Blinds
Another great option for improving the energy efficiency of a home is to install blinds, draperies or awnings; these can also be great aesthetic choices for the home. Awnings and blinds can help cut down the amount of hot air coming in or out of a house, and they are usually much cheaper than replacing an entire window.
Installing awnings and blinds might be a wise decision, if there aren’t any major differences in terms of energy costs after caulking and weather-stripping.
Cleaning Windows and Window Surfaces
Maintaining clean windows is another important step. Cleaning a window involves more than simply addressing the glass surfaces; you must also clean the screens, sills, window tracks and weep holes. This will extend the lifetime of the windows.
Cutting Down on Energy Costs and Lengthening the Lifetime of Windows
Spring and Summer cleaning is a great opportunity to make sure home appliances and accessories are performing optimally. Windows are no different. They do far more than allow sunlight and air into a home; they provide aesthetic benefits and climate control. As such, their overall maintenance is critical when it comes to minimizing energy costs.