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Frequently Asked Questions

Canadian homeowners may have some questions on the implementation of windows and doors. Canadian Choice Windows and Doors™ offer some insights to allay these concerns. Some Frequently Asked Questions and Answers are listed for your enlightenment.

Is it normal for windows to leak?

Windows which are subject to constant application tend to leak air and water over time. This phenomenon is known as air and water infiltration with the latter more visible. This is because windows are manufactured with weep holes for internal water to be drained out. Hence, various weather conditions could cause windows to leak especially at the window sill.

What is “Window Sweating”?

Window sweating is the occurrence of condensation on windows which adopt the lowest temperature in the interior surfaces of the home. This phenomenon seldom happens on walls which are normally warmer. Extreme cases of window sweating could lead to the growth of mildew and mould which should be taken care of immediately.

Is Condensation on Windows bad?

Condensation happens when excessive humidity forms on a cold surface in a thin film of water. This is very obvious on a humid hot summer day on a cold glass. The change in temperature with no change in water vapour leads to a rise in humidity until the dew point is reached. Further temperature decrease forces some vapour to condense as water if the temperature is higher than freezing temperature. Frost could come on if the temperature is lower than freezing. Condensation causes a definite call back on windows as it is not a good phenomenon especially when it happens on the inside of the windows. Visibility is limited and adjacent walls and floors are wet to cause more work on maintaining the space.

Severe cases of condensation cause wood to rot and the deterioration of paint and plaster. Condensation causes could arise from faulty manufactured windows, improper window installation or poor living habits of home occupants.

It is possible that even a well-built house could subject to moisture problems due to weather conditions.

What are the causes of condensation on Windows?

Moisture in the air is likely to cause condensation on windows. Simple living processes such as normal breathing and perspiration could increase the amount of water in the air on a daily basis for every home occupant.

Every activity in the home that uses water will increase the air moisture. This could include activities such as cooking, showers, laundry and dish washing.

Excessive moisture in the home could surface through:

  • Dripping faucets
  • Containers with water such as pet water bowls and fish tanks
  • Indoor drying of clothes
  • Leaking indoor clothes dryers
  • Gas-based cooking where moisture is released as a by-product of gas combustion
  • Open toilet lids with more evaporation happening
  • Turned off exhaust fans during baths and showers which allow moisture to be retained
  • Excessive use of steamers, teapots and plant misters
  • Sweating on building slabs without a vapour barrier
  • Over using of humidifiers
  • Faulty plumbing
  • Leaking hot water heaters
  • Faulty water piping
  • Too many indoor plants that require regular watering
  • Saunas and hot tubs
  • Outdoor drainage that tends to hold water
  • Faulty sprinkler system
  • Faulty shower piping, seals or faucets
  • Faulty refrigerators or ice machines
  • Poor ventilation in bathrooms
  • Excessive use of air conditioning
  • Tight doors that prevent air circulation out of the room.
  • Open water containers for soaking clothes in the house
  • Excessive wet clothing, wipe towels and washrags in the kitchen and bathrooms
  • Leaking of rainwater into the attic
  • Open space gas heaters turned at high room temperatures
  • Faulty cooling system that holds back moisture
  • Wet floors

Should windows condense?

Good windows should not cause condensation although it is a sign of old age where these units should be replaced to prevent further drafts and condensation. New windows of premium quality ensures a more airtight environment to retain better humidity.

Where does condensation happen on a window?

Condensation on windows is usually formed on the meeting rail and lower sash bottom at the glass interior. This is caused by the cooling of warm air to fall on the interior surface with decreasing atmospheric temperature. When the air contacts the meeting rail at its horizontal surface, the rate of fall of the air slows down to allow trapped water vapour to escape. The air rolls over the meeting rail edge to gain speed until it hits the sash lower handle. Here, the water vapour exits again to lie at the sash bottom forming.

How can condensation on the windows be reduced?

Condensation on the windows could be reduced by controlling the degree of humidity with a higher level of air movement generated. When the exterior temperature decreases, the humidity level must also decrease correspondingly.

When consumers understand the causes of condensation, they are in a better position to control window condensation.

What steps can be taken to reduce condensation?

Home occupants can take various simple steps in reducing window condensation in their homes. Consumers must understand that a reduced humidity level works to decrease coolness in the home; this would be the first step in reducing condensation. Hence, the humidity level in the home must be determined.

This requires regular monitoring as the outside temperature changes constantly. Consumers could also implement a hygrometer which is the device designed to measure humidity. A good hygrometer allows the consumer to keep track of the temperature constantly to take the right steps on reducing humidity and condensation.

Consumers should be aware of the degree of humidity inside the home based on the outside temperature as follows:

Outside Temperature °F Inside Relative Humidity
20°F to 40°F Under 40%
10°F to 20°F Under 35%
0°F to 10°F Under 30%
-10°F to 0°F Under 25%
Below -10°F Under 20%

What professional assistance could be rendered?

Canadian Choice Windows and Doors™ is well equipped with the latest technologies in providing the best solutions in resolving windows condensation issues through their years of experience and competency for prompt services.

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