Causes of Drafty Windows

Thursday, January 23rd, 2020 by Arnie Hammer

During the colder months of the year people adjust the temperature of their home to keep it at a comfortble setting, but what does it mean when you walk past your window and feel a cold breeze? This breeze is likley a draft coming from a window or multiple windows of your home. A window draft usually is a result of an issue with a window's weatherstripping or seal. The seal is located around the outside edge of the frame, where the frame and the glass meet or anywhere that the panes move. We have listed common causes of a draft below...

#1. Wear and Tear of the Windows

High quality windows are built to last; however, like anything else an excessive amount of use can cause wear and tear on the windows. As you continuously move the windows, the weatherstripping can become twisted or worn away causing the cold air to enter. 

#2. Old Windows and/or Frame

Lets say you do not frequently open and close the windoes, but still have a draft. The pane and the frame may be affected by the age. For example, over periods of time wooden frames can crack or warp leaving small gaps and cracks letting in the cold air. 

#3. Extreme Outdoor Temperature Changes

If you currently have cheaper winodws, drafts can be caused by temperature changes along with a possible combination of the two above. Certain materials expand when the weather is warm and contract during the cold months. When the air is cold and the material contracts, that can allow air flow between the gap. 

#4. High Moisture Levels

Do you live in a humid climate area? When the windows are exposed to high moisture, there is an increased chance that water can seep under the seal and let in moisture and cold air. If you notice condensation on your windows, wipe it away with a dry cloth to avoid/minimize water damage

#5. Incorrect Maintenance

In most cases, weatherstripping requires minimal maintenance beyond wiping it down. However, neglecting to clean weatherstripping properly when you clean your windows or exposing the seal to harsh chemicals can cause problems. Contact your contractor/manufacturer to ensure that your windows are properly maintained.

#6. Installation

If you did not have a reputable contractor install the windows, there could be weakness in the seal. 

#7. Unaddressed Mold

If your seal or weatherstripping consists of rubber or a similar material, it is vulnerable to some varieties of mold. This organic growth can eat away at the rubber, changing its shape and reducing its effectiveness. If you notice minor mildew, clean the area with an alcohol-based solvent or with vinegar. If you notice mold, request professional help from a mold remediation specialist.

We hope this helps! If you are looking for a window replacement and not sure what is the best choice for YOU, fill out a form and request a FREE estimate. 

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