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How to Handle Window Deterioration

Windows show their age in many different ways, making it apparent that it’s time for replacement windows. But before investing in replacement windows, you need to determine exactly what caused the deterioration in the first place, because if the underlying problem goes uncorrected the replacement windows will also fail.

A visual inspection of ailing windows will reveal clues as to what’s causing the problem. These problems typically fall into three categories:

The Window Unit

If you have dark green or black patches on the inside of the glass, or if the glass remains cloudy even after cleaning it, this is because moisture and dirt are trapped between the two panes of insulated glass. This indicates a broken seal, and repair may not be as cost effective as a replacement window.

Structural Problems

Hairline cracks on interior window trim or glass, cracks in the drywall or plaster around the window, or difficulty in opening, closing or locking the window are all signs of the framing pressing on the window unit. These structural weaknesses need to be fixed before installing a replacement window, or the same problems will affect the new window.

Water Damage


Water is the number one enemy of windows, and rarely is it the window that’s allowing water in, but the system around it. Signs of water damage include:

● Stains or marks around interior frames or surrounding walls

● Soft spots in the drywall or plaster under the window

● Soft spots and/or splintering on wood window frames or sills

● Flaking paint at the bottom of the sash

● Ants in and around the window

Windows rot from the inside out, so window sills are the first to show symptoms. Water damage can be caused by improper installation, lack of maintenance or reverse flashing. The water problems must be corrected before new windows are installed.

Installing new windows without solving the cause of the problem is like treating the symptoms while ignoring the disease. The very best replacement window that money can buy cannot withstand untreated structural or water problems.

When the old windows come out, a thorough inspection of the framing is a must. This means that the entire window unit must be removed so that underlying problems can be identified. But the catch is that window installers are typically not trained or instructed to look for – or fix – problems around the window.

Learn the right way to install replacement windows.

To get the value and comfort you expect from replacement windows, work with the professionals at Mosby Building Arts from the very beginning. Their decades of experience in water management, structural problems and carpentry will insure that you benefit from inspection of the problems, choosing the proper windows and expert installation. For replacement windows done right the first time, call Mosby at 314.909.1800 or contact them here.