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How do you know it’s time for new windows? There are a few ways to find out for sure. Follow these steps to evaluating your windows like a Window World technician to better understand the condition of your windows and whether it’s time to schedule a consultation.
It all starts with a thorough visual inspection. When you’re looking over your windows, pay special attention to the frames, insulation, caulk, and locks.
If you have wooden window frames, damage is usually easy to spot. Look for any signs of rot or areas where the wood is loose, including the corners. In places where the paint is chipped, it’s not just cosmetic. There is a good chance the wood underneath is beginning to rot.
For metal window frames, look for dents and dings. Metal frames are typically made of aluminum, which is especially susceptible to damage from storms.
If you have vinyl window frames, you know they are built to last. It’s still important to visually examine them, but don’t be surprised if they’re undamaged, even after several years.
When it comes to your insulation and caulk, look for dried up and crumbling areas. When caulk gets old, it dries out and crumbles. Unsurprisingly, this means it’s no longer keeping your window sealed. Your HVAC system is probably working harder than it should, which is costing you money every month.
And, of course, if your windows don’t lock properly, they’re not secure or airtight. If your locks are broken or don’t work correctly, it’s important to get them serviced as soon as possible.
Make notes of all the places you see any of this damage so you know which windows need the most attention.
Drafts are a clear sign it’s time to replace your windows, but how do you know if you have them? The simplest way is holding your hand near one of your window’s seams while the window is closed. If your windows are especially drafty, you’ll be able to feel air escaping.
If you can’t feel a draft, that doesn’t mean you’re in the clear, though! Air may still be escaping, just not enough for you to feel. There are a few at-home tests you can perform to determine whether you have a draft, even if you can’t feel one.
This test works best on a windy day. Turn off any fans and be sure the air or heat isn’t blowing near the window. Standing in your home, light a candle and carefully hold it or place it on a table near one of your window’s seams (making sure you’re away from curtains and blinds). If the flame stays upright, your windows are secure and you don’t have a draft. If the flame bends toward or away from the window, you have a draft.
This test will tell you if your windows close as tight as they should. Simply open the window, place a piece of paper in the sill, close the window, and try to pull the paper out. If the paper rips, your windows are secure and you don’t need to worry. If it comes out easily without tearing or folding, that means air is also coming in and going out easily. You need to have your windows examined and replaced by a professional.
If you’ve performed these tests and determined that you need to have your windows replaced, you can then measure them to better understand which window styles are perfect for your space.
Measuring your windows is relatively simple, it just takes some attention to detail. To do this, you’ll need a tape measure and a notepad to record your measurements.
You’ll measure each window to get the width, height, and depth. When measuring windows, always start with the width. Place your tape measure inside the side jambs at the top, middle, and bottom, being sure to move the sash to get more accurate measurements. Write down these three numbers and circle the smallest one. That is the width of that window.
To get your height, you’ll repeat this process vertically. Start with the left side and place one end of your tape measure at the top of the jamb and the other end in the sill at the tallest part. Again, write these measurements and circle the smallest to find your window height.
To find the depth, measure from the outside of the frame to the inside of the frame. Do this in several spots. Again, the smallest measurement is your window depth.
Repeat this process for each window you want or need to have replaced.
Keep these measurements handy to be one step ahead of the game when you schedule your free consultation. It will help us give you the most accurate estimate possible, which helps you make your final decision.
Now that you’ve inspected your windows like a Window World technician, you’re ready for your consultation. Contact us today to get started.