old windows

When to replace windows is a commonly asked question we’re asked.  Did you know that replacing the windows on your home could get you up to a 74% return on investment?

Whether you’re considering selling your house, want to save on your energy costs, or are simply to the point where window replacement is the only option – we’ll help you understand when to replace windows.

Please keep reading for ten common signs. Who knows, it may be time to call a window replacement company.

Table of Contents

Signs It’s Time For New Windows

1. When They’re Old

The age of your windows is a good indicator of when they need replacing.

While old windows might still be functional, there’s a good chance they’re not very efficient. Windows that are over 20 years old should be replaced.

If you’ve lived in your home for decades and have never replaced the windows, they are likely original to the house. Replacing your windows will keep you up-to-date with the latest window technology.

Older windows are likely to be made with pane glass. Even if they are dual pane windows, they probably aren’t energy efficient. Newer replacement windows are designed to help prevent air from transferring in and out of your home.

There are also so many options to choose from, and with the help of Energy Star ratings, you can rest assured that you are getting the right choice for your home’s needs. The Energy Star program started in 1992, so if they are older than that, it’s time to replace them.

Newer windows can come with glazing that will protect your home. Older windows that lack this glazing allow UV rays to enter your home through the windows. UV rays cause fading of carpet, furniture, and curtains.

Most windows today use something called Low E glass. This type of glass helps keep your home at a consistent temperature throughout the year. It is also less likely to fade in color.

2. When They Won’t Open

If your windows won’t open or if they stick when you open them, it’s time for new ones.

Windows can get stuck shut for a few different reasons. There could be dust build-up, tight springs, or a problem with the roller system. If your old windows are made of aluminum, they can swell when the temperature changes.

The springs in the handle often stop working when you squeeze them to release the lock. This issue can not only cause air to leak out of your home but could also hinder the security of your home’s exterior.

If your older windows are made of wood, the painted frame can prevent them from opening over time.

Windows that won’t open are a real problem. For one, they are practically useless. Nothing is like sleeping with your window open on a fantastic fall night. Opening your windows during season changes can reduce heating and cooling costs.

Then, there is the issue of safety. Having windows that do not open is a significant safety risk. If a fire occurs, your windows may be your only exit.

3. When It’s Hot

Picture WindowsWindows aren’t just for looks; they also help with ventilation in your home.

If your home is sweltering when your windows are closed, they might need replacing. Older windows don’t have the most efficient insulation.

Proper insulation works to keep heat out when the sun shines on them. According to Energy Star, windows that gain their certification can reduce your energy bill by 12%.

This will also decrease the strain on your HVAC system, causing it to work less than it would with older windows.

If you have picture windows that do not open, you are not getting proper airflow to get your house cool. There are many different window style options that all offer ventilation when the window is opened.

Opening windows around your house will allow cool air to circulate, saving you money on air conditioning and keeping you comfortable.

4. When It’s Loud

Did you know that windows offer sound control? Older windows are lacking in this area. If outside noises plague you, you should consider replacing your windows.

Windows are supposed to provide acoustic insulation to reduce the amount of external noise you hear in your home. A window’s ability to block sound is measured by its Sound Transmission Class (STC).

STC ratings usually range from 18-30. The higher the window’s rating, the better it reduces noise. Older windows with a single pane typically rate in the 18-20 range. Standard new windows, which feature a glaze, usually order around 28-32.

If this isn’t good enough for you, manufacturers make unique windows with STC ratings of up to 48 to protect homes in boisterous environments.

Choosing a window that works for the level of noise pollution near your home can reduce stress and improve your comfort.

5. When They’re Damaged

While this one seems obvious, the consequences of not replacing broken windows are not always obvious. Windows that are visibly damaged need to be replaced sooner than later. How do you tell if a window is damaged?

You could have damage to the frame or the glass. The frame could be worn down or chipped. There might be water stains on or around your window. The frame might be broken or warped in shape.

The glass on the window might be broken. If your window has water damage, you want to get it fixed as soon as possible if it allows water to get in.

If the glass is broken, the window needs to be replaced. Broken windows can negatively affect your home in several ways. They will offer reduced heating, cooling, and sound control efficiency.

More importantly, broken windows could open your home to other significant issues, such as mold, mildew, and pests. Plus, it could make your home a target for intruders. If a burglar sees your broken window, part of his job is already done.

If your windows are broken, don’t wait around to replace them.

6. When You Feel a Draft

Windows are a prime spot for heat (or cool air) to escape your home.

You already spend enough on heating and cooling your home, so don’t waste your money by letting the heat out the windows. An average of 10-20 percent of your home’s heat exits through the windows. We’re sure you can imagine the percentage with old or broken windows.

Air escaping your home causes your HVAC system to work harder to keep your home at the set temperature. This increase in your HVAC’s workload increases the need for electricity and can also shorten the life of your HVAC system.

Not only that, but drafty windows can cause an increase in humidity, putting your home and family at risk for mold and mildew growth.

Besides feeling a draft, condensation inside the window can signify that your window needs to be replaced. Window condensation on the interior of your home usually means that the window is leaking air and that your home is humid.

Keep in mind that condensation outside your windows is no cause for concern. It just means that it’s warmer and more humid outside than inside.

If you feel a draft when you stand near your windows, the window is cold to the touch, or there is condensation on the inside, you should replace them. New replacement windows are designed to be energy efficient and to keep the weather outside.

7. When You’re Renovating

Window RenovationReplacing your windows is not something you only do when they aren’t working.

It’s common to replace your windows to improve the look and feel of your home. If you are renovating or remodeling, choosing new windows can transform the look of your home and help express your design goals.

Replacing all your windows at once is ideal, even if you are not renovating. Although only a few of your windows may show issues, the others may soon follow.

If your current windows were all installed at the same time previously, any windows that aren’t showing signs will most likely soon be in the same condition as the ones you are planning to replace.

Even if you have a historic home and want to keep the windows in line with the period, you can find wood windows over vinyl that will give you the look you desire with the benefits of modern efficiency.

Replacing your windows allows you to customize their looks to the little details. You’ll be able to choose their color, frame thickness, and decorative grids.

Windows are essential when expressing your style because they are visible inside and outside your home. Window replacement doesn’t have to be an expense you dread. Getting new windows can be an exciting opportunity to improve the feel of your home.

8. When You Want to Change Their Function

When renovating your home, replacing your windows isn’t just about aesthetics.

This is also an opportune time to improve the function of the windows in your home. Windows aren’t just for looks. Windows provide natural light, improve airflow, and can even serve as access points.

You might consider replacing an existing window with a glass door to access your patio or other outdoor living space. Replacing your windows during a remodel can improve your comfort.

If you have a picture window in a room you’d like to let air in, replace it with an open window. Maybe you have a window that obstructs your view. Replacing this window will transform your experience of living in your home.

Replacing windows that will help with airflow can increase the comfort of your home and the aesthetic. Additionally, changing out a windows function could also help your home’s safety if children or small pets are present.

With so many new options, you can be sure there is a window with the functionality your space needs.

9. When They’re Hard to Maintain

Windows need to be cleaned at least once a year.

Older windows are a lot harder to clean than newer ones. This is usually because they don’t lift out of their tracks easily. Newer windows are specifically designed to clean more easily.

Newer window designs make it easier to clean windows on second stories. For example, double-hung windows allow the sash to tilt inward.

This makes cleaning them from the outside reasonably easy. This feature also increases the safety of your window cleaning process. No more climbing tall ladders to get to those dirty second-floor windows.

Properly maintaining your windows will improve their appearance and prolong their life.

10. When You’re Selling Your Home

Replacing your windows will give you a significant return on your investment when you sell your home.

Home buyers love seeing new windows on a home. New windows will increase your curb appeal and allow you to market modern windows’ comfort benefits, such as reduced exterior noise and efficient temperature regulation.

Plus, if you try to sell your home with windows that are broken or won’t open, you’ll most likely end up paying to replace them once the home inspection is done.

It’s better to replace them ahead of time if you know they don’t work to establish trust with your buyers. If you don’t fix such a prominent issue, they will wonder what else you failed to maintain.

Adding new windows should increase the value of your home.

Replacement Windows to Consider

When it comes to replacing your windows, there are many options. Knowing these options and what they offer can help you narrow down what works best for you.

Double-Hung Windows

Double Hung WindowsDouble-hung windows are vertical windows built so that both the upper and lower sashes are operable.

This means that you can raise or lower both the top and bottom sashes, allowing versatility in airflow.

Additionally, both sashes tilt in, making cleaning the exterior windows convenient and safe.

These windows are not only great for circulation but also for safety. If you have small children or pets, they may be able to climb out of an open lower sash.

With double-hung windows, you can open the upper sash instead of the lower one to keep kids and pets safely inside while still getting airflow into your home.

Hopper Windows

Hopper WindowWhat is a hopper window

A hopper window is a window that is hinged to open and shut instead of sliding open. It is similar to a casement window but is hinged at the bottom instead of the top.

A hopper window allows airflow in smaller spaces like a bathroom or laundry.

With these windows, you can control the airflow by opening the window a little or a lot.

Also, the window opens toward the inside of the home, making the exterior of the window easy to clean.

Sliding Windows

Slider WindowsSliding windows are long rectangle windows with two sashes that open by sliding horizontally.

These are ideal for spaces that are wider than they are tall.

They are similar to a double-hung window, just turned on its side.

These windows are often found in rooms where you want an unobstructed view of the outdoors.

They are also an excellent option for a space where you want maximum ventilation.

Sliding windows are easy to open and are low maintenance.

What’s the Best Replacement Window Brand

10 Year Workmanship GuaranteeIf you’re wondering who can offer the best overall replacement window and installation in the market today, won’t you consider STL Windows and Doors part of your three estimates?

We have over 40 years of experience, offer ProVia, American-made windows, and backup every window installation with our 10-year workmanship warranty!

They strive for the highest standards in quality, service, and customer satisfaction in their products, offering quality, old-world craftsmanship.

STL Windows & Doors is proud to be a Platinum Authorized ProVia dealer and certified installer.

When to Replace Windows

Now that you know when to replace windows, don’t delay.

Contact us today for a free estimate to discuss your options and see how new windows can improve your home.

And take advantage of our replacement window cash deal by saving 20% on your next project. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Know When To Replace Windows?

There are many ways you can tell if it’s replacing your windows. Some of the easiest ways are checking for cracks, watching for changes in your energy bill, and noticing when your windows become difficult to open or close.

How Often Should Windows Be Replaced?

Home windows have a typical lifespan of 15-20 years. Depending on proper installation, window care, and other factors, this timeframe can be shorter or longer.

Should I Replace 20-Year-Old Windows?

Yes! Not only are 20-year-old windows at the end of their expected lifespan, but there are also more energy-efficient options now than when these windows were installed. And windows that are more energy efficient could start saving you money as soon as they replace the old windows!

Should I Replace All Windows At Once?

Yes! Replacing all your home’s homes at the same time can improve your home’s HomeSense and your home’s home appeal.

Keep in mind that if some of your home’s homes are inefficient or have issues, the remaining ones will likely be in the same condition soon.

Related Resources

For more information on the topic, consider reading the related articles below.

 

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