DIY Check Windows and Doors for Leaks

Although winter isn’t technically here yet(December 21st) ,   it's time prepare your home for the seasonal change. Sealing the air leaks around your home windows and doors is a simple task that can help prevent drafty cold spots in your house, which means you can save money on your monthly utility bills. The key to this is knowing the weakness in your home to defend against the elements.

Open Your Eyes

When checking your home windows and doors for air leaks, start with a visual inspection from both inside and outside of your home. On the outside you should look for areas where the caulking has failed, revealing the gap between the window or door frame and your home's siding.

On the glass itself, be on the lookout for damaged glazing, which is the hard putty that holds the individual panes of glass in place.  If you see a haze or frozen look it is time to replace.
On the inside, you should inspect the threshold under and around each door leading to the outside world, looking for daylight or other obvious signs of an opening that is too big and needs to be sealed shut. Make sure that the weather stripping around the windows and doors is in good condition, making note of any damaged weather stripping that needs to be replaced. 

Have a Smoke

Some problems can not be detected in the methods above.  One way to detect these air leaks is to conduct a "smoke test." To do this, you will need to close all the windows and doors in your home and turn off any combustion appliances, such as a furnace or water heater. Next you will need to turn on the kitchen and bathroom exhaust vents, which will create a negative pressure in your house that sucks outside air into your home through any crack or opening.

Now you can check for air leaks by holding a lit incense stick close to the spaces around the edges of your home windows and doors, looking for a noticeable change in the smoke rising from the lit incense stick. If there is a air leak, the smoke will waiver and be drawn inwards by the outside air that is finding its way into your home. If the smoke remains undisturbed, then you can assume that there are no air leaks in that specific area.

Get Technical

Using science and technology an infrared thermometer, you can get a digital temperature difference between objects such as glass and the window frame. These gadgets can be costly and if you don’t know what your doing, call the pros at JCF Construction. 610-740.4298


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