Broken or damaged windows are no fun to deal with. Whether they’re caused by a stray baseball, temperature differences, or even simple wear and tear, a damaged window leaves your home vulnerable to the elements. Your home may also be less secure when a window breaks or ages, especially a first-floor window.
Whatever the cause, you’ll want to get a broken window taken care of as soon as possible. You have two options: repairing the window or replacing it. Which one is most cost-effective, and which one provides the best protection for you and your family?
Contact our company for replacement windows in Fort Worth. We enjoy sharing our expertise about home windows and helping homeowners make educated decisions on the best options for their house.
What are the Signs That Your Window Needs Repair or Replacement?
How do you know when your windows need attention? It’s helpful to know what to look out for so that you know when to call a repair company. Here are a few signs to watch out for.
- Cracks in the glass. Accidents happen and sometimes things end up tossed through a window, but that’s not the only cause of window cracks. Temperature changes outside can also cause cracks in the glass due to the way glass expands and shrinks.
- Cracks or rot in the muntins. What in the world are muntins? They’re the pieces of wood that separate panes on some types of windows, usually in a grid. If you notice cracks or wood rot on yours, your windows may be letting in condensation or outside air.
- You’re having trouble opening and closing your windows. Stuck windows are irritating, but they’re only a minor inconvenience, right? Certain weather can actually warp a window to the point where it’s difficult to open. If you’re suddenly having trouble opening your windows, inspect the frame to see if it looks distorted.
- You’re noticing fog on the windows. If you aren’t running a humidifier inside or taking excessively hot showers, there shouldn’t be fog or condensation on your windows. This generally indicates a problem with the insulation.
- There’s water around your windows. This goes right along with the fog on the windows. If the insulation or sealing isn’t good, the condensation can be severe enough to cause puddles of water around the window.
Can I Fix My Old Windows Instead of Replacing Them?
Sometimes, it seems easier and cheaper to just skip calling the repair company and do the repairs yourself, but you may end up costing yourself more in the long run if you haven’t done a window repair before. However, window caulking is a minor repair that you can easily do on your own.
Caulking is used to stop or prevent drafts, especially in the fall and winter. Caulking your windows can keep you and your family more comfortable and save you money on heating bills. Caulk is relatively inexpensive, usually around $20, and you can find it at your local hardware store.
However, for anything bigger than a minor caulking job, it’s best to call a professional for replacement windows. You run the risk of damaging the window further or injuring yourself on broken glass if you attempt major repairs without the proper equipment and experience.
When Is It Time to Replace Your Windows?
The average lifespan of a window is 15-20 years, and sometimes there’s not much that can be done to repair a window when it’s damaged. It can be hard to tell when it’s time for replacement windows rather than try to repair them, but there are a few key signs to look out for.
Window rot affects the muntins, the frame, and the sill of your window. All of these components help keep the window in place, so if they’ve started to rot, it’s time to consider replacing the window entirely. Cracks in the window frame also indicate that the window should be replaced rather than repaired.
If you see unexplained increases in your energy bills without changes in your usage, your windows may be the culprit. As windows age, they start to let in more air, which is why it gets drafty near your windows in the wintertime. New windows have better insulation and sealing, which keeps the cold air out.
Your windows also should not stick or be difficult to open, especially not when they used to open just fine. Some minor sticking when the temperature changes outside is normal due to expanding and shrinking in the wood, but if you’re having to use all your strength to get the windows open, it may be time for replacement windows.
Which is Cheaper: Repairs or Replacements?
When your windows are broken or old, you want to get things fixed as quickly as possible at the lowest possible cost. If you’re debating whether to replace or repair your windows, you need to take all of the possible expenses into account, not just the up-front cost.
While window repair is the less expensive option upfront, you may be extending the life of a window that’ll only end up causing you more problems down the road. Keep in mind that windows are meant to last 15-20 years.
If you repair a 20-year-old window, you’ll save some money at first and the window will probably work fine for a bit, but end up being less energy-efficient and more fragile in the future, leading to more money being spent on repairs.
Window replacement, on the other hand, comes at a higher cost up front but can really save you money in the long run. Modern windows are much more energy-efficient and have better sealing and insulation than windows made years ago, which lowers your energy bills. In addition, replacing your windows lowers the likelihood that you’ll need repairs in at least the near future.
Consult a Professional Installer for Replacement Windows
When it does come time for replacement windows, you’ll want to consult a professional window replacement company. Not only will they be able to help you choose the right style of window for you and your home, they can also install the windows for you. Having a professional install your windows reduces hassle and stress and ensures that the job is done right the first time.