Spring is well and truly with us, the days are growing longer, the nights have lost their bitter cold bite, and the glowing promise of summer is just around the corner. Many of us are using this time to make changes to our homes that will help us to make the most of the clement weather. We’re clearing away clutter, taking down the heavy drapes, patching up cracks in the drive and sprucing up the flower beds in our gardens.
But in this spring cleaning fervour, don’t make the mistake of neglecting your windows. Those clever glass panels work very hard for you, keeping the heat inside where it belongs, shutting out draughts and unwelcome sounds and keeping your home as cosy as possible all year round.
Your windows need a little extra care as spring bleeds into summer to ensure that they provide peak protection and comfort for your household in the warmer months. With that in mind, here are some tips to help you prepare your windows for summer.
Inspect The Seals, Strips And Frames
The cold, wet weather of autumn and winter can cause damage to certain parts of your window frames as the years go by. Now that the weather has regained its cheer, it’s the perfect time to inspect your window frames, paying special attention to the seals and weather strips.
Weatherstripping is the rubbery strip of material between the sash and the windowpane that maintains a consistent temperature in your home and keeps out the excesses of the weather outside. If it has become worn or cracked, now is the perfect time to replace it.
You should check the caulking around the window frame that seals the gap between your window and your wall. Wear and cracks here can cause thermal leakage that could seriously add to your heating and cooling costs.
Inspect The Hardware
Many of us like to keep our windows partially open at night during the summer. It admits a gentle breeze into the home and helps us to stay cool as we drift away to sleep. During the colder months, however, our windows usually stay firmly shut. With this in mind, it’s always a good idea to inspect your window handles and hardware to ensure that they open and close properly. The last thing you want is to cause accidental damage by forcing them.
If your handles feel wobbly, loose screws on the base plate are usually to blame. This is common as the metal plate expands and contracts slightly with the passing of the seasons. Tightening these up with a screwdriver and spraying all joints with a silicone lubricant will have your windows feeling like new again.
Consider Adding A Window Film Layer
There’s nothing quite like seeing your home bathed in rays of gorgeous natural light from your windows. There’s no better showcase for your home’s interior design concept and all the little flourishes that make your home your own. However, those UV rays also have their caveats.
They can cause your furniture and other belongings to fade or become discoloured. Furthermore, they can cause an irritating glare that hurts your eyes and potentially ruins a family movie night on a bright summer evening. Whilst also making your living space uncomfortably hot.
Window film is a thin plastic coating that can be applied to your window glass. It can be installed on the inside or outside of the window, although it is usually installed on the inside to protect them from the elements. It is easy to install and can be quickly removed when the autumn chills set in. They can also help to protect your household’s privacy without ruining your view.
These film layers are generally silver or metallic, enabling them to reflect heat and UV light away from the home. They are best suited for use on the south, east and west-facing windows as these receive the most direct sunlight in summer.
Consider Installing Awnings
If the idea of installing window film doesn’t appeal to you, awnings can be a great compromise, especially for downstairs windows. Retractable or roll-up awnings can be positioned above the window frame, and be folded down when you need to provide a little shade over your windows. This reduces glare and excessive heat without blocking your view.
In fact, installing awnings above your windows can reduce heat gain by 77% on west-facing windows and as much as 65% when installed above south-facing windows. Plus, when the darker, colder weather sets in, these awnings can be rolled up or retracted and sit above your window in a protective cassette.
Know The Signs That Your Windows Need To Be Replaced
All windows are built to last and as long as they are properly maintained, double glazed windows can last for anywhere between 20 and 40 years. However, it’s important to be able to identify the signs that could indicate that your windows need to be replaced. One of the most obvious of which is condensation.
Condensation between the panes of glass in your windows indicates that the window unit’s airtight seal has failed. This has allowed the insulating gas between the panes to escape, meaning that your window is far less efficient than it should be. The longer you wait to replace this window, the more money you could be losing in unnecessary heating costs.
You should also consider replacing your windows if:
- You notice a breeze or drop in temperature when you walk past them
- The pane has noticeable chips or cracks
- You notice puddles of moisture or mould around your window frame
- They no longer open or close smoothly
In financially troubled times, many may be wary of replacing their double glazing. However, it is only a matter of time until this becomes a false economy. The sooner damaged or worn window units are replaced with more energy-efficient alternatives, the more you will save on heating and cooling bills and the more comfortable you will be in your home.
Get The Most From Your Windows With Klg Glass
At KLG Glass, we specialise in all kinds of glass installations and repairs, including the replacement of double glazed window and door units. If you want to ensure that your home stays cool in the coming summer while also remaining warm in winter, we can install highly efficient double glazing units. So you can make the most of your windows this summer!