For most of us, there’s no landmark moment when we realize that it’s time to replace our windows. We go through a series of small realizations, more and more often, until the choice becomes clear. But sometimes the case to replace our windows is already stronger than we know. If you knew how to evaluate your windows, you might already concede that the time to replace your windows is now. Take a moment to consider if your current windows are performing the way they should, or if they’re already negatively impacting your life:
Can’t Maintain Temperature
When most people think about what controls the temperature in their homes, they think about their heating and air systems. But windows, too, play an important role in maintaining temperature. Windows with poor seals let summer heat and winter cold into your home. If you feel drafts or cold spots, your windows’ seals have already been compromised by cracks or warps or leaks in the seal; your heating and air system is having to work harder to maintain the temperature in your home. That hard work is a big reason why you’re paying too much on your energy bill, and it could be why you’re uncomfortable in both summer and winter.
Let in Too Much Noise
If you have to raise your voice to carry on a conversation, or adjust your TV volume to tune out your neighbors, then your windows aren’t offering enough sound protection. Older windows let in much more noise than modern windows. Single pane windows lack the insulating properties of newer windows with two or even three glass panes. Upgrading to newer, multi-pane windows may be the key to finally being able to sleep in, to deal with stress, and to enjoy some much-needed solitude.
The sunlight we love to invite into our homes can also cause extensive damage to furniture, carpets and rugs, other fabrics, and artwork. If you’ve had to replace your sofa or carpet due to fading, then you might consider replacing your windows instead. Unlike older windows, modern windows employ coatings that can block out more than 90% of damaging UV rays; for example, the SmartSun line of replacement windows by Renewal by Andersen can block out 95% of damaging UV rays. That investment in windows will protect your bigger investment in home furnishings.
Can’t Open or Close Easily
If your windows are painted or nailed shut, your problems are clear: They won’t let in fresh air. And, more importantly, they won’t provide a route of escape in the event of a fire or emergency. That’s not safe. But windows that are difficult, but not impossible, to open are an issue, too. If you avoid opening or closing difficult windows, you’re compromising the flow of fresh air in your home. (If you don’t think that matters, it’s been much too long since you opened your windows.
Is It Time?
New windows offer more than pretty faces: They can keep you comfortable while saving you energy. They can shield you from unsettling noises from outside. They can protect expensive furniture and carpet from fading. And they can make it easier to enjoy fresh air or even escape in an emergency. If you’re starting to feel deprived of any of these qualities, it’s probably time to replace those old windows.