Should You Repair or Replace Your Old Home Windows?

Should You Repair or Replace Your Old Home Windows?
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3 months ago
Reviewed by Bryan Baeumler

Windows protect our homes and belongings from the elements and from intruders. It’s important to ensure that they are always in the best condition.

If you realize that there may be a problem with your windows, it’s important to take precautions. You will need to decide whether the problem requires repair, or a total window replacement. Making the right decisions helps you tackle the problem at hand and avoid spending on unnecessary tasks.

So, when do you replace windows, and when do you repair them?

Breaking Down the Myths Surrounding Window Replacement

Replacing windows every time you notice a problem, instead of replacing them only when there is no other option, will end up costing you more. Potential energy savings will also remain insignificant compared to the money you use.

The situation becomes only worse when you have to replace several windows at once in your home. With new windows ranging between $300 to $2,100 or more plus installation, replacing a whole house with new windows can cost several thousand dollars – no energy savings will make up for that.

Surprisingly, replacing windows can also reduce the value of your house. If your home is vintage or has several vintage features, installing modern windows will reduce its value. Getting customized vintage windows isn’t cheap, either.

Finally, replacing windows has a significant carbon footprint. Manufacturing and transporting windows both generate a lot of greenhouse gasses. Replacement needs to be reserved only for the most extreme cases of window damage.

When is it Time to Replace Your Old Windows?

Sometimes, repairing your damaged windows is not an option.

First, the majority of modern windows can't always be repaired. Single-pane windows from the past were easy to repair. Modern double- or triple-pane sealed windows, however, are more challenging to fix. Repair may be impractical in such cases.

You may prioritize replacement when your window damage is caused by water infiltration. Excess water leads to rot, and there is little worse than having that in your house. Rot undermines a structure's integrity, so allowing it to spread unchecked in your home will only result in further issues.

In addition to the loss of heat, money, and comfort, rot might threaten the wall's structural integrity. This situation will create more financial implications and, worse: a risk of collapse if it goes too far. There are also air quality concerns to take into account, since mould and mildew are dangerous to inhale.

Repair vs Replace: Which Option is Right for You?

Let’s discuss when you should consider a window repair and when a replacement would be better. Get a window repaired if your window has:

Cranky Window Sashes

Older windows frequently have top or lower sashes that are immovable. This might be because the sash and frame are held together by several coats of paint that span the two surfaces - or perhaps, the sash got out of place.

Broken cords on sash weights are typically to blame when sashes are challenging to lift. The spring may have broken or gone free for spring-type sashes, and this kind of issue can be remedied.

Drafty Windows

Even if you installed energy-efficient windows in every window of your home, you would only save, on average, 7–15% on your energy costs. However, you can reduce your energy costs by 10–20% if you fix the leaks in your windows and other leaks around your house. However, the money you didn't spend on replacement windows is the true saving.

Broken Glass and Seals

If you have less pricey vinyl panes, then repair is the easiest and most practical option. Prioritize repairing aluminum-clad, multi-pane and vintage windows as well. These windows are quite expensive to replace, going beyond $600 per window.

Broken seals should also be repaired instead of replaced. It takes only a few minutes and costs between $40 and $250 to replace a window sash, which extends the window's lifespan and protects the frame.

Mild Water Leakage

When interior water is found near a window, it is usually coming from around the window rather than through the window. Stopping the water flow is solving half the problem.

Water can be forced into windows by poorly draining gutters and drainpipes. Window seals are designed to keep water out, but not water with such force. Reroute your drainage system and see if the situation improves. If it does, then that means you only had mild water leakage. Only minimal damage will be done in such cases, which is easy to repair.

Meanwhile, you should get a window replaced if your window has:

Major Water Leakage

If water is not only seeping in through adjacent drainage but also straight through the window, you need a replacement. This issue means that the window itself is faulty. You cannot repair it; you must replace the window.

Interior Condensation

Water condensation within your window's double- or triple-pane insulated glass unit (IGU) causes foggy windows.

Today's windows have self-sufficient IGUs built into them that can prevent condensation from happening, so unlike traditional multi-paned windows which had the glass placed in place by a glazier, IGUs are sealed and permanent. An IGU cannot be disassembled and rebuilt by a do-it-yourself-er or even a competent window technician. The only alternative is removal and replacement.

How much is it to replace windows in a house

How to Find a Reliable Window Replacement Company

Window replacement is a delicate procedure. You need people who know windows inside out, are experienced, and have the trust of the community.

Canada Choice Windows and Doors has been replacing and repairing windows for quite some time. We are committed to putting quality first and bringing you the best the industry has to offer. With us, you will get the best pricing, materials, and services.

Get ready to enjoy interacting with our team of diligent, intelligent personnel dedicated to ensuring you get the smoothest window replacement experience and comprehensive advice on the market. Contact us today for a consultation.

Julia Gurevich
Julia Gurevich

Julia Gurevich is a versatile content writer with a passion for delivering captivating narratives through a diverse and attentive approach. Her eye for detail helps her craft content that resonates with audiences across varied home improvement industries, capturing the perfect balance between information and entertainment. As a content coordinator, Julia takes pride in delivering content that leaves a lasting impact through her ability to navigate seamless content strategies and collaborative projects between teams. In her free time, she enjoys exploring Toronto’s cultural landscape, visiting local parks, and getting to know members of the community through events and activities.

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Reviewed by Bryan Baeumler

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