Imagine your home as a blown-up airtight bag full of air, this is called the building envelope. The purpose of the building envelope is to regulate heating and cooling in the home as efficiently and effectively as possible without heating and cooling the whole neighborhood. Now, what if your airtight bag has a tiny hole in it? What happens to the efficiency?  Replacing your windows is expensive however, it has a significant impact on your monthly heating and cooling bills. Windows that are not in good condition reduce the energy efficiency of your home and make it more expensive to maintain the temperature in your space. Thus, making your furnace and air conditioner work harder to keep your home at a comfortable temperature, using more electricity and/or gas.

Windows can last a very long time. Just because your windows are old does not mean that they need to be replaced. It is not uncommon to see windows from the 1980s still holding their own.

Here are three telltale signs that you should replace your windows:

Condensation between the panes.

Condensation between the panes of glass in your window indicates that the seal is broken. This means the inert gasses between the panes have escaped and are no longer providing energy-efficient insulation. Humidity and temperature fluctuations cause moisture to build up between the glass which shows up prominently and can stain the glass permanently even when there are no water beads visible.

Rotting wooden frames.

New windows are typically framed with PVC but older windows often have wooden frames. Wooden frames, if maintained, are not a problem but quickly become one when exposed to moisture for too long. Moisture softens and rots the wood, making the window less stable and less efficient to act as a proper insulator. A good indicator is peeling pain around the frames. If your wooden window frames show signs of rot or decay, it’s time for them to go.

You feel a draft when the windows are closed.

In the Quinte area, we’re exposed to high heat in the summer and extreme cold in the winter. Windows help provide much-needed insulation for your home from the outside elements. If your windows are cold but letting in a strong draft, it may be time to consider replacing them. The same goes for your doors, if you feel a draft, they may need new weather stripping or to be replaced entirely. Gauge the draft coming off your windows as glass does get cold when it’s -30C outside, but if you can feel what seems like a breeze coming off your windows you have a problem.

Replacing your windows is one of the best investments you can make for your home. It improves your resale value and reduces the cost of your living expenses by providing better insulation for your home, therefore reducing the load on your HVAC systems.

Enjoy warmer winters and cooler summers with energy efficient windows. Double-pane windows are the industry standard for use in residential homes and provide an energy-efficient solution with lots of natural light that will save you money on your electricity bill.

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