Don’t Ignore Condensation Between Your Window Panes
Most windows today are comprised of at least two, and sometimes three, panes of glass. The air between the glass panes acts as an insulator, making modern windows far more energy-efficient than the single-pane windows of yesteryear. However, multi-pane windows do develop problems as they age. Condensation may begin appearing between the panes of glass.
Here is a closer look at this problem, what causes it, and how you should handle it.
How Can You Tell if the Condensation Is Between the Panes?
When you spot condensation on your windows, first check to see where it is located. Condensation on the inside of the window usually just indicates that your home air is overly humid. This type of condensation can lead to mold growth, so it’s important to address it by dehumidifying your home, but interior condensation is not a sign of problems with your windows.
If you try to wipe away condensation and it does not disappear, then the condensation is probably between the glass panes.
Why Is Condensation a Problem?
Condensation between the window panes is a concern for two main reasons.
1. Condensation Leads to Mold Growth and Deterioration
You can’t clean up condensation that forms between the windows, and it will take a long time to dissipate due to a lack of airflow. Therefore, moisture in this area often leads to mold growth. Mold, even when partially encapsulated in a window, is bad for your health and can lead to indoor allergy symptoms.
The constant exposure to moisture can also cause you window frame and sash to deteriorate further, leading to loose glass panes and unsightly windows.
2. Condensation Indicates Air Leaks and Inefficiency
When condensation appears between the panes of glass, that means air is leaking in and out from between the glass panes – something that does not happen with tightly sealed, properly functioning windows. Air leaks compromise the efficiency of your windows, leading to increased energy bills. You may also notice a cold, drafty feeling when you walk by the leaky window in the winter.
Some of the most efficient windows come with argon gas, rather than air, between the panes. These materials are better insulators than air. However, if you have condensation between the panes, that means the argon gas has probably leaked out and your high-efficiency window is not so efficient anymore.
What Should You Do About Window Condensation?
To stop condensation from forming between the panes of glass, you need to address the leak that is allowing air to pass between the window sash and the glass. There are three options for doing so.
1. Have the Leaks Repaired
In rare cases, if the leak is minor and your window is in otherwise good shape, a window repair company may be able to repair the leak by sealing or caulking the damaged portion of the sash.
2. Replace the Glass
If the sash and frame are still in great shape but the glass is cracked or damaged, you may be able to have just the glass portion of the window replaced. However, this is rarely a viable approach because air leaks are usually caused by a problem with the sash, rather than with the glass itself.
3. Replace the Window
Replacing the whole window is usually the best choice when dealing with air leaks and condensation. Make sure you choose a sash material that is less prone to leaks, such as composite. Composite window frames resist rotting and warping, so they stay more tightly sealed to the glass.
If your windows are developing between-pane condensation, do not ignore this problem. The resulting mold and window damage will only get worse over time. Contact Fischer Windows & Door Store to learn about your replacement window options.