Living in a house with cold air coming through windows can be too uncomfortable to enjoy home. Old cold drafty windows can also be very expensive to keep. That’s because they often cause electricity bills to be much higher than normal due to so much heating and cooling loss. The constant energy losses also force the HVAC system to work much harder than it should, which causes it to wear out prematurely and require repairs or replacement sooner. But, what is causing the windows to be drafty and cold, and what’s the easiest way to remedy that problem?
Why is There a Draft Around My Window?
Drafts around windows happen when there is outside air coming in from one or more places around the window frame. Specifically, the air coming through window frame is from one of these locations around it:
- Air leak along the edge of the wall framing around the window: There may be an issue of cracked or warped exterior or interior building material around the window, due to original construction issues or aging.
- Air leak along the edge of the window unit itself: There may be an issue with the manufacturing of the window, or perhaps the window was dropped before installation or hit by a falling tree limb after installation, causing a dent along the frame edge, for example.
- Insufficient sealing around the outer frame: Gaps in the seal applied along the line where the framing around the raw wall opening and the outer frame on the window unit meet were not sealed well due to installation issues.
- Poorly manufactured seals along the inner frame: Breaches in the seal along the inside of the window framing that holds the sashes in place.
- Poorly made seal or failure of the seal of one or more sashes: The window has air leaks above, below, or at one or both sides of one or both of the sashes.
- Separation of the glass from the sash framing: The glass may be separated from the sash framing. In an old or damaged window, the glass may have parted from the frame.
- Wood rot: Deterioration of wood framed windows often compromises the seals over the years.
- Mold growth: A buildup of mold along the edges of the movable parts of window frames can prevent a tight fit.
Any of the above problems can allow cold outside air to flow through the openings they cause and into your home, creating a cold draft that makes the home uncomfortable, causes skyrocketing heating and cooling bills, and adds extreme wear and tear to the HVAC system.
How Can I Stop Drafts Around My Windows?
If you find yourself and your family coping with extreme drafts around windows in your home and need immediate relief, here are some temporary solutions you can try:
- Install weather strips around the window to help seal gaps that allow drafts.
- Apply spray foam insulation to fill gaps between the framing around the raw wall opening and the outer window frame.
- Insert rope caulk to help fill cracks or crevices along the inner sides of the window casing.
KEEP IN MIND: These are only temporary fixes. They may be effective but not necessarily lasting corrections. You’d be well advised to obtain a long-term solution as soon as possible.
When Should Windows with Drafts Be Replaced?
If a draft is due to cracked old sealant, or a needed repair to the window or wall structure, you may opt for a budget-friendly repair. But, if the repair is costly or will not correct the problem permanently, the most practical option for stopping drafts is often to replace the window. This is especially recommended if the window is old and deteriorated and no longer functions as it should. That means it has likely exceeded its useful lifespan. It’s time to replace a window:
- When drafts are making areas of your living spaces uncomfortable and are impacting your quality of life.
- When the poor energy efficiency of your windows is causing your energy costs to be too high.
- When your HVAC system is being strained due to the inability to keep up with heat and cooling losses from windows.
- When drafts are reducing your home’s energy efficiency and impacting your efforts for environmental protection.
- When the existing windows are detrimental to your property value.
KEEP IN MIND: Today’s double-paned argon gas-filled windows with warm-edge spacers and low-E treatment to inhibit heat transfer are unmatched for energy efficiency and long-term durability. However, you should have your replacement windows installation performed only by an industry-certified professional window installer. That’s the right way to ensure you will have a properly fitting and functioning window throughout the duration of the window’s life expectancy.
Best Value in Energy-Efficient Windows
Paying more in energy costs to be uncomfortable living in a cold drafty house just doesn’t make sense over the long term. If you determine that installing replacement windows is your best option to correct the problem, Advanced Window Products can provide you with rapid fulfillment of custom window orders. We also offer among our industry’s best warranties.
Advanced products are installed by factory-trained and professionally certified window installers. Our windows are engineered for maximum energy efficiency, saving homeowners as much as 30% on electricity costs. Upfront costs are minimized by our $0 down and 0% financing.