7 Ways to Tell if You Need New Windows
Windows are worn out
Signs of rot or warping on your windows or that the double glazing is failing are big indicators that you need to replace them.
Wooden window frames in particular can be tricky to keep in good condition. The trouble is, once rot has set into the wood, it can be pretty hard to halt the decay and keep on top of it. Rain becomes a nightmare and you might find it's just too difficult a job to fix the window so it still looks good and does its job properly. Of course, if you just leave it, the rot will just get worse, and it will become harder to open or close the window.
Poor quality uPVC windows may discolour over time and as they expand in heat they can become warped. If your double glazing is failing you may notice water leaks, condensation, cracks, chips, holes and scratches and difficulty regulating the temperature in your home
Energy bills are high
Old or inefficient windows can have a significant impact on your home's insulation and can lead to high energy bills. The more heat that is able to escape your home the more you will be using your central heating to compensate, and the same is true of using air conditioning. You can check this by standing next to your windows and seeing if it feels cooler than the rest of the room. If the glass is cold to touch then it's highly likely you're wasting energy. You should also look for gaps in the frame
Older windows are often single-paned and therefore more vulnerable to leaks. It's a very good idea to invest in double glazing with argon gas and low-emissivity (LoE) glass to reduce heat loss.
Windows are difficult (or impossible) to open and close
This is one definite reason to replace the window, primarily because it could be a vital escape route in the event of an emergency.
There are plenty of reasons why the window has become impossible to open. A common one is if it's been painted shut. It might have saved time on the decorating but it certainly doesn't help the functioning of the window! Other causes of a stuck window are a warped frame such as uPVC windows which can expand and warp in hot weather. The uPVC should contract again when it cools but if this happening repeatedly the frame may be the wrong size for the aperture. Another cause could be that the foundations of your home have shifted and the window frame is no longer fitting in the space properly. In all of these instances, a new window will solve the problem.
Your home isn’t soundproof
Modern windows are designed to reduce sound transfer which can make a huge difference to your quality of life if you live near a busy road. If you can clearly hear noise from outside when you stand inside and the window is shut, this is probably an indicator that your window is quite old. So, if you want to enjoy the peace and quiet, new is the way to go. You can learn more about the best windows for noise reduction here.
Windows are drafty
The important thing to consider with drafty windows is that your energy bills to heat your home will be higher - up to 25% more in some cases. So not investing in a new window because of the cost is likely to become false economy in the long run. New windows are also significant more energy efficient than old ones so you could end up saving quite a lot of cash.
Drafts can often occur when the window doesn't shut properly. If the locking mechanism is not working any more, this can be the cause. And don't forget that could give you a potential security issue too.
Windows are leaking
Windows are there to let the light stream into your home, right? Well that wonderful effect can be ruined if moisture gets between the panes in double glazed windows, or you start getting a build-up of condensation on the inside.
Yes, condensation can be wiped away but this quickly becomes annoying and often means you end up with mould growing on the inside of the frame too. And mist or moisture inside the window glass can't be resolved, it will simply sit there obscuring your view and blocking the light.
These issues usually occur when the seals have gone, or if the window hasn't been installed properly in the first place. The worst-case scenario is when the window actually starts to leak and you end up with pools of water on the inside.
In all of these instances, it's probably the most cost-effective option to simply replace the window as repairs can work out as expensive if the seals on other panes fail and the whole cycle starts again.
You don't have double glazing
Take a good look at your windows. If you've always wondered why your room is always too cold in winter and too hot when the sun is out, it may be that you actually have single pane rather than double-pane glass. These are often found in old properties and can make your home quite uncomfortable because they're simply not as effective or as efficient as a more modern, double-glazed window. Time to replace.