Your windows are supposed to keep water outside, but you may sometimes notice leaks around the frames or in the glass. If you see signs of a leaking window frame, you might need to call a professional to replace your windows. Use this guide to find out why your window is leaking and what to do about it.
Common Signs of a Leaking Window
After a quick inspection inside and outside your property, you can determine whether your window leaks if you discover the following symptoms.
- Water coming in around windows: One of the clearest-cut signs of a window leak is water dripping near the frame or in the panes. You may have accidentally left your window open during a storm, but if you can confirm it’s shut tight, there’s probably a gap letting water inside your home.
- Rotten wood: Water can damage your wooden frames. If you have rotted or warped trim, you should contact a professional to inspect your windows. They might have to remove part of your wall to assess the water damage.
- Foggy windows: Window condensation isn’t always a sign of a leak, but if your glass panes have water stuck between them, the seal might have broken, which could create problems in the future.
- Musty odor: Damp wood produces an unpleasant smell that’s often familiar in the basement. This odor could be from water dripping in through your window that could eventually cause mold to grow.
- Mold: Check your window frames for black spots of mold. This fungus thrives on damp areas, and it could quickly spread into your walls. It can also reduce your home’s indoor air quality and worsen allergy symptoms.
- Discoloration: Water leaks in your window can discolor the frame. You may notice a yellow stain at first, but as more moisture comes inside, the mark darkens to a brown or copper color.
- Peeling paint: When moisture starts to leak past your windows and into the walls, you may notice some chipping paint or wallpaper. The water weakens the color’s adhesion and makes it pull away from the wall. The paint starts to chip when the leak dries.
- Damage to the floor: Since water tends to drip from top to bottom, neglected leaks could end up dripping onto the floor. Check your property for warping hardwood, peeling linoleum, loose tiles or moldy carpeting.
- Peeled or damaged caulk: You may want to inspect the sealant around your windows to make sure it’s still intact. If the caulk is peeling or missing, moisture and air can leak into your home.
- Sagging drywall: If you have a severe window leak, water could saturate your drywall and cause it to sag. You probably wouldn’t have this issue unless you’ve ignored the minor signs of water damage. However, if you don’t repair the water leaking from your window, your home’s entire structure could deteriorate.
Reasons for a Leaky Window
If you’ve discovered water damage around your windows, here are some of the reasons they could be leaking.
- Poor house design: The window leak might not have started in the frame or glass. Instead, your house might lack overhangs that drain water flow off the roof and away from your property. The fascia boards above the window may also be at an improper angle. Make sure they’re facing outward to control water away from your window.
- Poor installation: Even if you invest in sturdy, energy-efficient windows, if the contractor didn’t install them properly, they could allow water into your home. Using house wrap instead of window flashing to control water flow is a typical installation mistake that often results in leaks.
- Uneven windows: When the contractor installs your windows, they need to make them level to prevent water from accumulating. Place a level on your windows to find out if they’re even.
- Improper seal: Contractors often seal windows with expanding foam, but they need to use enough of it to avoid water from leaking into the unit. If they don’t use enough foam, air channels might develop between the wall and the window. The windows also have to be the appropriate size for the opening, or the foam won’t produce an accurate seal.
- Poor glass seal: If you see leaks between your window’s glass panes, the glass seal has probably worn out. Even though a poor glass seal doesn’t always mean that you have water leaking into your home, it means your window isn’t as insulated as it used to be.
- No paint seal: Your professional contractor can tightly seal your windows by overlapping the paint slightly onto the glass. The paint’s membrane from the frame to the glass establishes a seal that protects your unit against moisture damage.
Contact Sunshine Contracting to Request a Free Estimate
Our team at Sunshine Contracting will effectively replace your leaking windows in Northern Virginia. If you need new windows, reach out to us for a free quote. You can also call us at 703-935-4663 or contact us online with questions about our products and services.