Most windows will develop problems without proper repair and maintenance, but having vinyl windows installed eliminates many issues. They don't need to be repainted every few years and they don't rot like wood, plus they have great insulation to cut drafts and your heating bills.
Vinyl windows will have one of these 3 issues over time if you don't do at least a minimum of window care:
Scruffy, dirty window frames.
Like painted wood, aluminum, or fiberglass, vinyl will collect dirt, dead bugs, and debris over the course of a year. At least once a year, hire someone or take the time yourself to inspect and repair all windows. You'll want to clean the vinyl elements of the window with a non-abrasive cleaner recommended by the window manufacturer. Some people use a bit of white vinegar or baby shampoo in water.
Never use any abrasive scrubber, razor blades or other sharp tools to clean the vinyl, since you could expose the insulation to the elements if you're too aggressive. Let the cleaner sit for a few minutes on each window to loosen dirt, then go back and thoroughly remove stains. Finish by wiping the vinyl with a damp cloth.
Check the caulking, as it can become unsightly after periods of bad weather. Re-caulk with fresh product to save your home from air and moisture and to give windows a like-new look.
Sticky, hard-to-open windows.
To solve the problem of windows that refuse to open, first check your weatherstripping. It may be poking out or otherwise in the way. Try to gently ease it back in place. If that's not the problem, make certain the window is plumb and level. Homes sometimes settle in odd ways, or wood frames around vinyl windows warp.
After the yearly cleaning, apply some silicone or other vinyl-window lubricant to the places where the window elements slide against each other. It's best to consult your window installation professionals if you're not sure of the right product to use.
Spray or pour a bit of the lubricant on your rag and carefully wipe the place where you want it to go, being careful not to get any on the glass panes. A small brush is also a good way to apply the lubricant.
Condensation on windows.
The moisture in your home wants to join the drier air outside, and that's why condensation forms on windows. Don't be surprised if new homes or new windows show condensation for a short period as moisture in fresh wood evaporates.
If you need high humidity in your home to protect pianos, antiques, or hardwood floors, you'll have to find some way to mitigate the negative effects of the inevitable window droplets. Tiling window sills, applying sealants, and regularly wiping down the windows may help.
If your humidity is due to cooking, laundry, or bathing issues, install adequate exhaust fans in kitchens, laundry rooms, and bathrooms. Other tips to follow to reduce condensation are:
- Make sure attic, crawl space, and basement vent louvers are open.
- Open damper in fireplace.
- Ventilate humid rooms once a day with outside air.
- Have exhaust placed on furnace or boiler.
Vinyl windows are easy to maintain and they'll give you many years of service if you give them a little bit of TLC now and then. For further assistance or replacements, contact a local outlet, such as Beissel Window & Siding.