Blog,replacement windows and doors

Checking Your Windows For Air Leaks

One good reason to invest in replacement windows for your Mission Viejo, CA home is if your current windows have air leaks. Air leaks cause drafts and uncomfortable cold spots in your house. Air leaks can also dramatically hike up your energy usage, and therefore your bill.   

How do you know where these air leaks are? They can be tricky to find if you’ve never done it before. Use these tips and tricks for checking your windows for air leaks to get you started.  

  1. Use Your Eyes – While it may seem obvious, a lot of people don’t think to actually look at their windows to check for leaks. A detailed visual inspection of the interior and exterior of your windows can show you a lot, from old caulk and gaps to damaged glazing and more. If the window’s entire perimeter isn’t sealed, the window won’t be effective.  
  2. Try the Smoke Test – Some air leaks and their causes aren’t easily seen. To find these pesky hidden leaks, you can try the “smoke test”. First, close all the windows in your home and turn off your furnace, water heater, and any other combustion appliance. Then, turn on the exhaust vents in your bathrooms and kitchens. Next, take a lit stick of incense (that’s smoking), and move it around the edges of all your windows. The smoke from the incense will move around or change direction if there’s an air leak, letting you know where your problem areas are.  
  3. Utilize Technology  You can also buy an infrared thermometer to measure the ambient air temperatures around your windows. If cold, outside air is leaking into your home, it will show up on the thermometer.  
  4. Call the Professionals  If you don’t want to find air leaks yourself, or you want to be 100% sure your windows are sound, you can call in a professional energy auditor to do a “blower-door” test. Similar to a smoke test, the blower door test assesses your home’s air tightness and helps discover window leaks. During the test, the auditor will attach a special fan to a doorframe to pull the air out of your home, bringing the interior air pressure down. The higher air pressure from outside the home will try and get inside through any window leaks. The auditor will then use a smoke stick to find said air leaks. These professional tests aren’t very expensive, and you can sometimes get them for free.  

Once you find the window air leaks, you can try sealing them up with caulk, weather stripping, adjustable thresholds or similar easy solutions. However, the most reliable way to fix air leaks is to replace the windows.   

Want to learn more about Mission Viejo, CA replacement windows and air leaks? Contact Cunningham Doors & Windows. You can visit us at 1940 E Edinger Ave Santa Ana, CA 92705,or give us a call at (714) 258-2500 to schedule a consultaion, or to get more information.  

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Cunningham Doors & Windows