• Dmitriy Kuleshov

10 warning signs that it’s time to replace your windows in 2020

Updated: May 9



Many homeowners frequently overlook the importance of conducting a regular inspection of their windows. This notion comes from the belief that “okay-looking” windows provide the same level of performance, security and functionality as the new windows.


Even good looking windows may conceal warning signs of deterioration, “ageing,” that might finally lead to decreased security and performance along with increased utility bills and potential house damage.


Read on this blog post to find 10 most common warning signs that it’s time to consider replacing your windows.

Table of contents:


The average lifespan of residential windows is 15-20 years. Well-maintained windows, which are made of a high-quality and durable profile like VEKA Softline 82, last beyond the 20-year mark, reaching its service life up to 40 years.


Once your windows approach a second decade, it’s time to start thinking about replacement. However, your windows can reach its lifespan even before the end of the first decade, as several factors impact its ability to maintain excellent performance. These factors include:


  • Ease of window maintenance, ideally you need to have easy access to various parts of a window frame to perform cleaning and other service operations monthly.

  • Profile system and thickness, UPVC vs. PVC vs. Wood vs. Metal

  • Weather resistance, like hail- and storm-proof profile


… and many other factors that yield a combined lifespan of the window.

That’s why when your windows pass beyond its peak lifespan, it’s important to get in touch with your local window replacement contractor, and schedule an appointment to check the conditions of your windows.


Procrastination, in this case, might cause, for example, your timber frame to rot and decay. Bespoke Windows offer an emergency windows check service for homeowners in Calgary and area.


There’s one apparent warning sign of deteriorating windows – an increase in your energy bills. The lack of proper insulation and ill-fitting may cause your furnace and air condition work harder during peak times.

Depending on the condition of your windows, around 18 to 35% of heat can be lost through the windows of a house that is not energy efficient, according to the Government of Canada website.

More energy-efficient windows can save you an average of 45% on your energy bills, and if you convert this percentage into a dollar amount, then you’ll save between $126 - $523 per year.


As mentioned above, ill-fitted windows can increase your energy bills, as well as cause draft, leak and other serious issues. Therefore, the second most common warning sign to replace your windows is the increased difficulty of operating your windows.


Once again, there are many reasons why your windows might be difficult to open and close, but generally, these ones below seem to occur more frequently:


  • Poorly installed windows, you can examine your windows on the existence of any visible gaps between the frame and the sill.

  • Sash windows don’t close and open, it can be due to poor alignment, size and weight of the window sash (that’s why you might consider installing Tilt and Turn windows that offer greater impact resistance in comparison to traditional windows).

  • Paint

  • Poor-quality uPVC profile system that can expand and warp in hot weather, and tougher and brittle at lower temperatures.

  • Foundations of your home have shifted and the window frame is no longer fitting in the space properly.


In all of these instances, the new windows will solve the issue.


One of the worst sings indicating the need to replace the windows is leakage. Usually, it occurs due to bad glass seals or window sealant, misaligned window sash, sealing gaps or cracks in your walls.


It’s worth noting that bad seals don’t always mean that water is leaking into your home; although, it does mean that your window lost its insulating gas – which drastically affects energy efficiency.


To ensure your window is not leaking, simply examine the following elements:

  • window sill;

  • bottom rails;

  • glass seals;

  • top of the window frame;

  • any signs of condensation.


Bad windows will surge your energy bills by – 18-25%, and up to 35% in some cases.


Drafts can increase tension on your furnace system by consistently running at maximum RPM to keep your desired room temperature during frigid temperatures.


The most common reason for drafts to occur is a poorly installed window that doesn’t shut properly. The closing issue may be related to a malfunctioned locking system.


It’s easy to locate the points of the draft through a few simple steps:


  1. Run the back of your hand around the framing of your windows and exterior doors. Feel for any cold breeze, and listen for any whooshing or whistling sounds of air coming through cracks

  2. Light a candle and hold it 2 inches from the windows and doors. Position it at various points around the window and door frames, and look for any flickering that results from drafts and not from your own movement. Apply silicone caulk or rope caulk to areas where a draft is coming through.


This deficiency is easy to spot. Poor quality uPVC windows have a tendency of discolouring (often changing colour to yellowish) over time, as well as becoming warped due to excessive UV exposure.


If your house was built before or around the 1970s, and still has original windows, then most likely you have a single-pane glass.


Single pane glass windows lack many features of the modern double and triple pane glazing, and they're usually prone to be drafty, insecure and show poor energy efficiency and thermal performance, let alone their lack of visual attractiveness.

You can use a method below to check if your window is a single or double glass.

Look at the inside edge of the window. If you see two panes of glass separated by a small spacer system, then it’s a double glazed window. If you see one pane of glass and no spacing system, then it’s single glazed.

The lifespan of residential windows can be decreased by half if it’s not properly maintained during the first decade.


Unfortunately, many types of windows make cleaning extremely difficult, and even dangerous procedure.


You need to lean out of the window, climb up the ladders to clean inaccessible spots and do it at the risk of own safety.

Many new windows, such as Tilt & Turn windows, come with advanced technologies including Neat® Naturally Clean Glass, maintenance-free window profile system and flexible opening mechanism that allows you to gain access to the outside part of the window.

Whether it’s a broken or cracked hinge cap on your window, or specialists run up blocks, there’s a moment when even the biggest windows companies are not able to help fix your windows due to the age of special window model.


If your old window is broken and requires an obsolete part in order to be fixed, then you have two options, either to do a CAD drawing and then scan to 3D print a broken part or to replace the damaged windows with the new ones.


The sound of morning birds does not always mean a peaceful morning, especially if ridiculously loud traffic noise comes after the serene chorus of robins.


It’s been found that noise pollution, which is defined by harmful impact on both physical and psychological wellbeing of a person, is one of the prime reasons to replace the windows.

Peace of mind is not guaranteed even if you have standard triple glazing, because if it’s not appropriately treated, installing two-three panes of glass can actually amplify the noise and surface vibration.


That’s why we recommend calling a professional contractor to inspect your windows, walls and floors to detect sound leaks, rather than doing it yourself.


Vitamin D is essential for healthy bones, so constant exposure to sunlight can supplement the deficiency of calcium and phosphate in your body.


Unfortunately, we can’t say the same about furniture, carpet and other home items that are extremely sensitive to UV rays.

Did you know that 80% of UV radiation gets through the cloud cover? Even on cloudy days, your belongings are under constant exposure to UV light.


Not all windows are capable of reflecting and protecting the damaging effects of UV rays, and single pane glass usually demonstrates the worst protection capabilities against the UV streams entering through your windows.

To help protect your precious belongings, you can install a Low E glass, such as Laminated or tinted glass that will minimize UV light absorption and reflect significant amounts of short-wave solar infrared energy.


Condensation occurs because water vapour in the air deposits itself on surfaces that are at lower temperatures.


Especially in Alberta with our frigid winters, we often see condensation in double glazed windows because the surface temperature of the window is cooler than the air inside the room.


It happens due to the failed sealant around the double glazing, which lets air in the gap between the glass panes.

It’s a warning sign that your sealant needs to receive treatment if you want to keep your energy bills lower and heat inside the room. The best way to spot condensation around windows is by looking out for any damage to the sealant around the windows.


Try to wipe down window sills to ensure no excess moisture enters your property's air and open windows as often as possible to allow air to circulate.


Windows in kitchen and bathrooms are usually the easiest to check, as the warmth from the steam keeps the condensation.


Are new windows worth it? In short – yes; they’ll make your house more energy-efficient, resilient, soundproof and comfortable place to spend your cosy evenings.

New windows will reduce your ever-increasing energy bills, and, especially reliance on furnace by keeping heat inside the rooms.


In addition to that, the new windows reduce the level of noise entering the home from outside, block drafts and gaps in the frame you will have a more comfortable (less drafty) home.


This should also help to reduce the build-up of condensation. And we’re not even talking about the new custom-made colours and styles of windows that give greater aesthetic pleasure.


Some factors affecting the cost of window replacement include the type and style of windows, e.g. casement, tilt and turn, awning, bay or bow, etc.


Whether it’s double or triple glazing, laminated glazing or quiet triple glazing, if you are after better noise reduction. Glass type and add on features like Neat® Naturally Clean Glass, tempered or laminated glass, window handles, exterior film and many others.

The complexity of installation will also impact the cost of replacing your windows, as some projects involve cutting out a section in an existing wall, or the need of using scaffolding to access windows located at extreme heights.


Many companies offer discounts when you’re having several windows replaced at one time.





Whom to call for a consultation about window replacement?


Bespoke Windows provides window replacement services in Calgary and area, including Chestermere, Okotoks, Banff, Canmore and many other locations in Alberta. We have built our reputation on providing only high-quality premium windows that will serve you up to 40 years.


Our company is the only supplier of high-quality German windows, which are given the highest industry quality stamps for being durable, energy-efficient and cost-effective solutions for our customers.

Let’s chat today about your next home project.

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