During the summer, it’s easy to forget about the chilly drafts of the fall and winter seasons. Now that fall has arrived in the Delaware Region, it’s time to take care of any problems with your windows and doors. In doing so, you’ll avoid another drafty winter.

The health of your windows and doors is important for the overall health of your home as well as your comfort and safety. A thorough inspection will uncover any issues that could become bigger, more expensive problems down the road.

To perform a proper inspection, follow this guide to ensure your home’s security and comfort.

Begin Your Inspection Indoors

It’s easy to overlook windows that are rarely (or never) used. By starting your inspection routine inside, you can go from room to room and easily check every window. Don’t forget the windows located in areas like the basement, attic, or garage.

Check The Mechanisms

Start by opening and closing each window and making sure the locking mechanism works. Locks are not just for security, but also to help reduce drafts by creating a tighter seal. Check that the window moves easily in its sash. If you experience difficulty in moving the window, there may be an issue with the sashes or frames. Water damage and rot or insects could warp the windows, making them harder to open and close.

If you have older wooden windows, be sure to check the glazing putty around each pane of glass for cracking or missing areas. Check out this guide from the US Department of Energy if you are thinking about updating or replacing them.

Look for Drafts

Second, you’ll want to check for drafts. With the window tightly closed, slowly move your hand around the edges of each window. Instead of your hand you could use a candle and watch for movement in the flame, indicating a draft. If you choose to use a candle, always be careful with the open flame. Make a note of any drafty areas with a sticky note so that you remember to tend to those areas later.

Listen for Outside Noise

While you are inspecting the windows from the interior of your home, you could also make note of the sounds you can hear from outdoors. Easily hearing cars drive by or voices of people outdoors is not necessarily a sign of damage, but you may want to consider an upgrade to increase soundproofing.

Inspect Exterior Doors

Follow the same procedure as you check all the exterior doors in your home. Don’t forget the doors that lead to basements, attics, and garages as well. Pay close attention to any weatherstripping. Replace any missing tubular rubber, felt, foam tape, or door sweeps that you find.

Related Article: Preparing Your Windows for Winter

Inspect From Outside

Windows and doors that are under large overhangs are well protected from rain and rot. Lower windows on a gable end and any windows that are consistently exposed to rain are much more likely to suffer damage. If you have skylights, they are best inspected during the routine check-up of your roof. If you haven’t yet checked them, include them in your inspection now.

Focus most of your attention on the bottom areas of windows and doors. Check for rot by gently pushing on the wood with a screwdriver. If you have aluminum-clad wood windows, squeeze the sashes and frames to see if they give at all. If there is movement, you likely have rot underneath. Check for any discoloration as well, which could indicate a problem.

Re-caulk any areas where you find caulk to be missing, dried out, or cracked. This will help seal the windows and doors against water and cut down on drafts coming into your home. If you have wooden windows, make sure the paint is in good condition. Repaint any areas that show cracking or peeling. A good coat of paint protects the windows and extends their life.

Stay Warm This Winter With A Window and Door Inspection

Adding windows and doors to your fall home inspection list will ensure that you stay cozy and safe this winter. It’ll also help you save money for holiday gifts by fixing any issues before they worsen into expensive repairs.

Here at Advance Inc., we are always ready to serve you in the case that there are any areas of concern. Request a free estimate through our website or contact us today to learn more. We are happy to help!