How to Avoid and Prevent Window Condensation
Does your home have windows that seem to fog up for no reason that makes sense? Window condensation is an issue in many older homes, but can also be prevalent in newer homes as well for various reasons including poor contracting. Understanding the root causes of window condensation and knowing how to prevent some of this condensation can not only save you hundreds of dollars on electric bills, but keep your home at a constant temperature throughout without cold spots due to climate transfer.
Water on Outside of Window Pane
If the condensation is prevalent on the outside of an interior window pane, it can mean that your home has high humidity rates. Although we want to reduce climate transfer between the home and the outdoors, having no transfer can cause vapor issues in rooms with higher humidity rates like the bathroom. This generally should not be a major issue, but if it is a concern, purchase a dehumidifier to help reduce rates.
Condensation on Window Sills
This is a bit more serious. According to the University of Wisconsin, the maximum rate of humidity in the interior or your home should be no more than 40%. This condensation can rot the sill of a wood window very fast and cause major wood rot around the window as well create a mold issue surrounding the window. Any number above 40% can be prime conditions for growth of mildew and mold.
How Can I Bring Humidity Rates Down?
There are many simple DIY fixes that can bring humidity rates down to reasonable levels without major costs:
- Install A Storm Door
- Caulk Existing Windows & Doors
- Keep Doors Open Even When Not in Use
- Use Ceiling Fans
- Keep All Air Vents Open
- Use Exhaust Fans
- Open Your Windows (Really!)
- Make Sure the Washer & Dryer are Ventilated Properly
If simple solutions are not assisting or improving humidity levels, other solutions are available.
- Assess and Repair the Vapor Barrier in Crawlspace
- Insulate Cold Water Pipes
- Install New Energy Efficient Windows & Doors
Why Energy Efficient Windows & Doors
Installing proper windows and doors based on your climate is a must for optimal savings and best conditions in the home. You can learn more about the Energy Star Performance Criteria from the Energy Star ratings page. If your windows and doors are not properly rated for the home’s area, you could be throwing away energy savings.
Vapor Barrier Checks-Out of Sight, Not Out of Mind
Vapor barriers in crawlspaces decrease the migration of water vapor from the core of the home, which is more prone to dampness and a climate variability. Having a licensed contractor review the condition of the vapor barrier to ensure that not only it is preventing vapor from reaching the foundation of the home but that is also allowing the crawlspace to dry out when appropriate. This can severely impact the condition of your home, but is often neglected by homeowners because it is not a visible portion of the home like the windows and doors. All three work together to provide a happy, healthy environment for the family.
Vinyl & Aluminum Framed Windows
A quality vinyl or aluminum window will also save you money on energy bills because the insulation in the frame of the window itself is energy efficient. Additionally, vinyl and aluminum windows require no maintenance because they never need painting or scraping. Overall, vinyl windows give you a great bang for your buck. These windows combine energy efficiency and affordability for families to improve the environment of the home.
Understanding how climate transfer and humidity is created within the home can help mitigate the risk to your family and decrease your energy costs immensely. Stop by any Bargain Outlets store and work with one of our experts who can explain, assist and help you purchase the best products to improve your home today!
Lynn Black is a graduate of Christopher Newport University with over a decade of experience in marketing strategies and content writing. She is a military spouse to a member of the United States Coast Guard. Lynn has experience completing DIY projects and will be tackling an upcoming home renovation using Barton's products.