Double Glazed Windows and Condensation Problems

We are often told of the benefits of installing double glazing, and indeed these are very compelling – Save energy (and cash); warmth, quiet… Not to mention the side line benefits that they look great and will make your neighbours jealous (don’t try and tell me that this isn’t a consideration – everybody wants to make their neighbours jealous!).

However, there is one problem that crops up again and again – that is the problem of condensation. Condensation is a natural occurrence, and no double glazed window can entirely eradicate the potential for condensation on your windows.

Condensation forms from everyday life. If you hang your laundry up to dry indoors, then excess moisture gets into the air. If you boil a kettle, then excess water gets into the air. If you take a shower, then excess water gets into the air. Even breathing, lets out excess water… There is no way to stop the causes of condensation, but that doesn’t mean that you have to live with condensation. After all, windows are there to be looked out of, and nobody wants misted up widows – especially during the winter, when this problem is more likely to occur.

What Can Be Done About Condensation?

Well the solutions to this problem are fairly simple, but you should have an understanding as to the type of condensation problem you are experiencing. If your windows are misting up on the inside over night, then the chances are that your problem is caused by poor ventilation. The solution could be to simply open the window during the day, to allow air to circulate throughout the room. Additionally, most modern double glazing units will be fitted with ‘trickle vents’, so if you have these, then use them.

If you don’t like opening windows, then you should look into purchasing a dehumidifier. But, remember, the cost of running these is likely to be quite high, especially, compared to the cost of opening a window for an hour a day!

Remember, if you do experience condensation on the inside of the windows, then it’s likely that your double glazing is working very well to trap warm air inside your home. Condensation occurs when warm air meets cold air and forms on the surfaces between – in this case your double glazed windows.

If your problem has built up over time and your walls or windows have mould growing on them (due to excess water) then you should treat this. Simply, wipe the walls and window frames with a clean dry cloth, then once you have removed as much of the mould as possible, try spraying some Tea Tree Oil over the affected area, as this contains natural anti-mould properties and should stop it growing back. It also smells nice, and is better for the environment than chemicals. Once the room has completely dried out you could take the opportunity to repaint, or repaper your walls – though only do this once you have eradicated the mould.

Condensation Between the Panes of Glass?

If, on the other hand, your double glazing is misting up between the two panes of glass, then your problems are more serious. Check the guarantee on your units – if they are still under guarantee, then you should get onto the company that supplied and fitted your units to replace them. If your double glazed windows are no longer under guarantee, then you should really consider replacing them.

Why Replace Double Glazing?

If a double glazed window mists up between the panes then it means they are no longer functioning as double glazed windows! You may as well have single glazed windows. This is simply because the seals between the panes have broken; letting air and water particles are seep in, between the panes of glass. Once this happens, there is little that can be done to save the existing windows.

The best solution is to replace your double glazed windows with newer, energy efficient units. Think carefully about the type of windows you want, and remember – you get what you pay for. Cheap windows will need replacing again in only a few years time, whereas high quality double glazed windows will last years – and years – and years. Some will even out-live you, so take this into consideration.

If you don’t plan on being in your home forever, and know you will want to move, then don’t be fooled by the prospect of cheap windows now – it may seem a good idea, but it’s easier to sell a house with perfect, sound windows with a long guarantee. It is equally important to look at the energy rating, as this is something more and more people are looking at when buying houses – the cheaper a house is to run, the better it will be to live in – and the more attractive it is to a potential buyer.

Finally, choose a reputable double glazing company that has been around for a long time and shows no signs of going bust – a 10 year guarantee on windows from a company that has gone out of business is not worth very much! Also, you should check their customer reviews; if people are willing to leave positive feedback, then the chances are they’re a very good company.

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