With the sudden drop in temperature here in the Minneapolis and St. Paul area, we’ve been getting calls from some of our customers asking why they suddenly have condensation on their windows, even new ones that were recently installed.
A lot of people wonder why this happens especially when they had just replaced the windows in the home and they’re noticing condensation. They want to make sure that the windows were installed correctly and that it wasn’t going to be an issue.
First of all, you should be aware that condensation doesn’t always mean your windows are in bad shape. There are a number of other factors at work, especially at this time of year.
Condensation on windows is a fact of life for Minnesota homeowners. It is important to find out why and whether or not there is a way to fix this issue.
The Basics of Condensation on Home Windows
It is helpful to understand what condensation is as well as some of its common causes.
What is Condensation? Condensation happens when the water from the air liquifies, either between the glass panes or on the inside surface of the windows. It leaves drops of moisture on the glass. It is sometimes referred to as “sweat.”
The cause? A dramatic difference between the air temperature on each side of a surface. Just like your iced tea glass may get condensation on the outside on a hot summer day, the same thing can happen to your windows when it’s warm inside and cold outside.
The same thing happens when you take a hot shower and the mirrors fog up. The surface of the mirror is cool to the touch, but you’ve just introduced a lot of warm, moist air into your bathroom space, and some of it will condense on the mirror. You might find the same thing happens in your kitchen on metal or glass surfaces if you’ve got a pot boiling on the stove.
While condensation is usually harmless, it can cause damage to certain materials, such as wood window frames.
Condensation Is Common with New Windows
It is more common with energy-efficient windows that are doing their jobs in fact. You will find that new windows which insulate and seal the home better will have more condensation on them than those older windows that are not doing their job. (We’re talking about condensation forming on the surface of the glass inside your home, not condensation trapped between the glass panes – that’s another issue, and it’s an indicator your windows have air leaks.)
In order to control the condensation on new windows, it is important to make sure that the home’s humidity is under 45-50% and that the condensation is wiped off every so often to reduce the chances of damage happening or mold forming. Adding additional airflow through the home may also help reduce the condensation.
When windows are installed correctly in a home, over time the situation will improve. Condensation will be something that evens out with time and then is not noticeable. This is something that provides the homeowner with comfort knowing that if they hired a professional replacement window company, it will not be an ongoing problem.
Speak with us here at Window Outfitters. We provide quality windows for every style home. We are THE replacement window company for the greater Minneapolis area. We serve the Twin Cities to provide homes with the protection, comfort and energy efficiency they need.