When the weather turns cooler in the fall, windows tend to sweat. This is just one of those things that happens when warm, humid indoor air comes into contact with cold glass. This tends to occur when overnight temperatures drop in the fall and winter. This condensation can block the view, drip, or freeze on the glass. So what should we do about it?
When you see moisture on your windows, it isn’t necessarily a sign that something is wrong. While interior condensation can sometimes result from a failing windowpane seal, most often, it’s simply a result of humidity in the air. The water you see is condensation from the warm air meeting the cooler glass, like when a cold beverage sweats on a hot summer day.
In fact, condensation may be more noticeable on high-quality windows since they are so energy efficient, indicating that your windows have good tight seals. The things that make homes more energy efficient—weather stripping, high-quality insulation, vapor barriers, and windows and patio doors that reduce air leakage—also lock moisture inside your house.
Moisture is a part of everyday life. Anytime someone takes a shower or cooks, it increases indoor humidity. In British Columbia, where the fall and winters are especially wet and cold, it’s important to keep indoor humidity only as high as you need it. When you see interior window condensation, it’s a sign to lower the humidity.
A few quick and easy ways to do this include:
- Opening the blinds and drapes to let moisture-laden air escape.
- Raising the air temperature in your home (turning the heat on will decrease relative humidity).
- Turning on ceiling fans to improve air circulation.
- Running exhaust fans in the kitchen while cooking and in the bathroom while showering or bathing. Leave the fan running for 15 minutes after you’ve finished to clear out lingering moisture.
It’s essential to manage humidity inside your home for its overall health, not just to manage condensation. Excess interior moisture can lead to swelling wood, mold or mildew, musty odours, discoloration, and cracking or blistering paint. Remember that wiping condensation off windows, especially wood or vinyl, is essential. Prolonged condensation can lead to mold, rot, or leaky seals. Use a towel, paper towel, microfiber cloth, or squeegee to wipe away excess moisture.
Want to know more? Take a look at this short video on understanding condensation.
Are you considering upgrading some of your older windows with new, energy-efficient ones? Give us a call or fill out our contact form to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation. We offer window and door replacement services in the Greater Vancouver Area, the Fraser Valley, Victoria, Nanaimo, Campbell River, and the Okanagan.