Well-fitted windows are integral to a building’s structure and weather-proofing, and can lower energy bills. However, windows are not a cheap purchase and it can take many years for any energy savings to be noticeable. It therefore makes sense to replace windows only when necessary. The question is, how do you know when it is time to do so?
Examine Windows for Signs of Damage
Wooden windows, in particular, are prone to water damage, decay and rot. It may not always be necessary to replace them but they do need urgent professional attention. Any window may have jammed sashes or broken parts. Again, a professional can advise. Another fairly typical problem is condensation building up between layers of glazing. In such cases, the entire window may need replacing, although this may be covered by any existing warranty.
This is high on the wish list of many owners, from both an environmental and an economic viewpoint. It is not always necessary to replace windows to make them more energy efficient, as weather stripping and caulking can be highly effective alternatives. A professional can advise on when and how these processes can be undertaken. It is also worth considering installing storm and screen windows as a cheaper alternative to replacement windows. Double glazing is a more expensive option but can also be very effective at reducing external noise. Fortunately, this is now so mainstream that whether you’re interested in double glazing in Leicester, London, Lowestoft or Lossiemouth, you should have no shortage of competent professionals.
Some older properties have their original windows. From an architectural perspective, these can be very important. However, from an insulation point of view, they can be a cold and draughty nightmare. Owners of listed buildings are restricted on any repairs and replacements – for them, Historic England is a useful first port of call. Owners of non-listed properties may also want new windows to be sympathetic to the original architectural style and period. Thankfully, there are excellent modern windows available that are virtually indistinguishable from the originals. A good window firm such as http://www.absolutewindowsolutions.co.uk/ can advise.
Windows That are Painted Shut
This is a common problem that tends to have resulted from DIY attempts at frame maintenance. A sash saw will cut through the paint and allow you to open the window again.