Impact windows are one of the finest methods to safeguard your building if you reside in Florida and are concerned about hurricanes. Installing them will also cut your insurance premiums.
To earn the “impact resistant” designation, a window must pass several tests, including small missile and wind simulation testing. However, they can still be damaged if improperly maintained.
Clean the Window Panes
The window panes on impact resistant windows are often the first place to get dirty. Kids touch them, dogs push their noses against them, and dust builds up. Finding a cleanser that cleans well and doesn’t leave streaks will help the glass stay clear and bright.
Tempered glass is safer than standard glass because it splinters into tiny pieces rather than dangerously sharp shards when broken. This type of glass is often required by residential building codes for windows in areas where people could potentially trip or fall.
Additionally, impact windows can prevent the most common method of home break-ins by making it more difficult and time-consuming for burglars to break through them. These features are why many homeowners choose to install impact windows, and the increased security helps them improve their property value. However, they must remain properly maintained to maintain their strength and protection. Thankfully, the steps to cleaning and preserving impact-resistant windows are simple.
Clean the Tracks
Your impact windows will protect you and your family from debris thrown by high winds during a storm, but their effectiveness is diminished when dirt, dust or grime clings to the frames. This is why it’s important to clean your impact windows regularly.
Using the right materials is also important. Paper towels and chemical cleaners may damage the frame’s finish, and using a hose with a pressure washer is not recommended, as this can exceed the window’s design pressure rating.
Instead, spray your impact windows with a non-chemical lubricant. Oil-free silicone-based oils are available at most home improvement stores. It’s best to do this when the sun isn’t out, as it can cause the lubricant to dry too quickly and leave streaks. Keeping your impact windows properly lubricated will help them open and close easily. This will also make them more energy efficient, retaining warm and cooler air in winter while reducing energy bills.
Inspect the Seals
In areas prone to hurricanes, homeowners and businesses need to invest in impact windows to protect their buildings from the devastating forces of nature. In addition to preventing damage from debris, these state-of-the-art windows offer several other benefits, including energy efficiency and security.
Window seals, however, can deteriorate over time, just like any other part of your house. It indicates seal failure if you observe condensation between the window panes or if your windows have started to mist up or get foggy.
Keeping your windows tight and properly sealed helps lower your heating and cooling bills, keep dust out, and prevent pests from entering your home. When you see signs of cracking caulk or other evidence of a broken seal, it’s important to have them repaired immediately. A damaged window seal can cause major issues with the structural integrity of your home and lead to serious water intrusion problems.
Schedule Regular Maintenance Checks
Choosing impact windows for your home offers better permanent protection from hurricanes and other severe weather conditions. They also prevent break-ins by making it almost impossible for intruders to gain entry through your windows. Additionally, they provide a more comfortable environment by reducing unwanted outside noise.
The most obvious way to tell whether your windows are impact glass is by looking for the permanent mark etched in one of the corners of the glass. This will identify the manufacturer and the standards that the window meets. If the glass doesn’t have this, many manufacturers will temporarily label it to help you identify it as hurricane resistant.
If you decide to get impact windows, choose an experienced installation contractor. If not properly installed, the windows could break during a storm or fail to protect your home. Also, a faulty installation may invalidate the manufacturer’s warranty. Therefore, you should only trust a contractor with extensive experience installing impact windows and doors.