This year marks the 21st anniversary of October as National Energy Awareness Month. To mark the occasion, experts at Simonton Windows offer a variety of tips for consumers who wish to perform a window and patio door “check-up” to gauge the energy efficiency of these products in their homes.
“Virtually every building component in a home needs to be replaced at some point, and windows are no exception,” says Gary Pember of Simonton Windows. “We’d like to think that our roof, siding and windows will last forever, but they won’t.
“Marking your calendar each October to routinely check your windows and patio doors helps ensure they are performing the way they were designed to perform. These checks also help determine when it’s time to consider a window replacement project that can offer you long-term energy savings—especially if you live in an older home.”
Pember recommends the following do-it-yourself tips to gain an initial impression of how well your current windows and patio doors are functioning:
Tip #1 - Examine the inside of your windows and patio doors for hot and cold “drafty” spots (or drafty areas). This indicates air infiltration which can lead to reduced energy efficiency.
Tip #2 - Check every window and door to make sure there is adequate weatherstripping and caulking around the units. This helps eliminate air infiltration and ensure a weather tight, secure seal.
Tip #3 – Look for “burnt out” or faded areas on your furnishings and carpeting. This could indicate harmful, damaging UV rays are entering your home through your windows or doors. You may want to consider replacement with more energy efficient units containing Low E coatings on the glass.
Tip #4 – If your windows no longer open or close easily--or if they need to be propped open--it could mean key components within the units are damaged or need adjustment. It could also mean the unit needs to be replaced entirely.
Tip #5 – Check the “fit” of your current windows or patio doors by having someone stand outside the units at night. With a small flashlight, stand inside and “travel” around the edge of the units. If the person outside sees light coming through the edges, this indicates a poor installation and is resulting in energy loss.
If your evaluation turns up one or more problem areas, it may be time to consider replacing your windows or doors. Be sure to contact an experienced window installation professional, such as a Simonton ProNetwork member. And, visit http://www.simonton.com/Information/EnergyEfficiency/ for more details on energy-efficient glass options.