Your windows are one of the main features of your home, letting in light whilst keeping out the weather and providing security whilst still allowing you to connect with the outside world.
The windows in our homes are such a normal part of everyday life that we tend not to think about them. They last for a long time and it’s likely that you may never have had the need to buy new ones. However, many people don’t realise that window frames (no matter what material they’re made from) and glazing don’t just sit there and look after themselves. Even if you don’t feel you need an emergency window repair or any replacement parts right now, you’ve got to maintain your windows if you want to make the most of them.
Keeping your windows clean may seem obvious, and it’s likely that you’re doing this already, but it’s important to consider what you’re cleaning them with. What works on some surfaces may not work as well on others, and it some cases certain cleaning products can cause damage if used in the wrong area.
It’s unlikely that your uPVC window frames will get very dirty but grime can build up on them, particularly on the outside. If you’re able, giving your window frames a wipe down with a soft cloth soaked in water with a splash of washing up liquid is all you need to do. Dry the frames afterwards with a paper towel and ensure that no grime has started to become ingrained in the corners or around the seals. Don’t use chemical or abrasive cleaning products on the frames, no matter what they’re made from.
Depending on the age of your window, some wooden frames may need more attention than others. Relatively modern wooden frames will just need the same care described above. However, if your window frames are old then you will need to keep a close eye on them to ensure they’re not letting moisture in and starting to warp. Re-treat and repaint areas which are beginning to peel and keep grime away from seals.
Aluminium frames can be finished with a wood-look coating or left as bare metal. They won’t rust or perish like other metals but still need to be looked after regularly to get the most out of them. Cleaning with a soft cloth and some soapy water is all that should be needed. If you find that you cannot get aluminium frames sufficiently clean in this way however, using a gentle non-abrasive cleanser should help.
Cleaning glass is generally straightforward but many people fail to use the correct products. Using a soft cloth and a little soapy water on the glass should be more than enough to get them clean. If not, a commercial window cleaning solution should be used on the glazing only – never get this on the frames if you can help it. Dry the windows with newspaper using small circular motions for a streak-free shine.
Windows can wear out and become compromised over time. Leaving a problem, however small, can compromise other areas of the window and mean that an avoidable problem becomes an expensive one. The areas that need attention should they become broken are:
Broken window panes don’t have to be completely smashed to present a problem. Hairline cracks and splintered glass may not seem like something you have to rush to get fixed, especially if they’re not that visible, but they can pose a threat to the security of your home and the safety of anyone who comes in contact with them. Any problems with the glass itself should be addressed ASAP. If you need an emergency window repair, call your home insurer or get hold of us directly on 0345 145 0130.
The rubber seals around the outside of the window frames keep the unit airtight and hold the glass in the frame. The weather seals help to fully close off the outside from the inside when the window is closed. Both sets of seals should be inspected regularly and replaced if they have split or have started to perish. Catching this early can extend the life of your window.
If you’ve got condensation on your window, then it may not be a huge cause for concern. However, if the condensation is between the panes of glass on a double or triple glazed unit, then this means that the seals have failed and you’ll need them fixed, as this will affect the thermal efficiency and the integrity of the window itself.
If there are gaps between the window and the frame, or between the frame and the main wall of your home, then these will need to be addressed. Gaps like this can let in moisture which leads to problems with the frame and problems with your home.
For security reasons, your windows should shut and lock properly and be checked regularly to ensure they haven’t been compromised. If you have a jammed lock or don’t feel that yours are secure enough, then we could help. Call us on 0345 145 0130 or use our online contact form.
Windows take a lot of punishment from outside forces, as they’re constantly fluctuating in temperature and will get battered by all extremes of weather. Due to this, it’s not surprising that some of the components can wear down quicker than others.
In order to protect your windows and reduce the need for an emergency window repair, it’s often beneficial to insulate your windows during the colder months. This can simply be a case of ensuring your curtains cover the entire window or installing a blind to keep the window at a more regulated temperature.
If you only have single glazing, it may be beneficial to line the window with special ‘double glazing film’ during the winter. This not only helps your energy bills by keeping the warmth in your home more effectively, but it also means the glazing is not susceptible to big temperature fluctuations, which could weaken it over time.