How to Identify Window Leaks

2010-01-31 12.47.04

When checking your home windows and doors for air leaks, start with a detailed visual inspection from both the interior and exterior of your home. On the outside, you should look for areas where the old caulking has failed, revealing the gap between the window or door frame and your home's siding.

From the inside of your home, you should inspect the threshold under each door, looking for daylight or other obvious signs of an opening that is too big and needs to be sealed shut. Make sure that the weather stripping around the windows and doors is in good condition, making note of any damaged weather stripping that needs to be replaced.

If you don't want to discover your home's air leaks on your own, then you always have the option to hire a professional. Stevens Glass would be happy to come out and provide a free estimate for a window tune up and take a look at the door seals and sweeps in your home. You could hire an Energy auditor to conduct a "blower-door" test on your home. A blower door test can assess the air tightness of your home and detect air leaks. During this test a specialized fan is attached to your home's door frame, which then pulls air out of your home, resulting in a lower interior air pressure.

Once the fan is stopped, the higher air pressure outside the home tries to find its way back into your home through any cracks or crevices. A smoke stick is then used to locate those areas that are leaking and vulnerable to heat loss. These tests are inexpensive, and in many areas you can apply for a free energy audit from your local utility company.

If you've discovered the air leaks in your home, you can set about sealing them up. More often than not, a fresh layer of exterior-grade caulking will adequately seal shut any gap or crack that is causing you problems. New weather stripping or an adjustable threshold can help to seal shut the gaps around your home's doors. Remember, the goal of your project is to discover all the air leaks around so that you can seal them up tight, which should result in a more comfortable and energy efficient home this winter.

If you’re having trouble, Stevens Glass can help you with any cracked or failed insulated glass units in your windows at your home.

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