Condensation and Ultimate Windows

Condensation is no one’s friend, it makes our nice cold drink all sweaty and, in the home, it can lead to bigger issues like mould when it forms on your windows and walls. Commonly found in homes in Australia, condensation occurs when the moist warm air in the home meets a cold wall or surface, most commonly on the glass and frames in windows, as that air cools the water vapour it contains is transferred to the surface. This is most common in winter as we heat our homes. The warmer the air the more water vapour it can hold, which can lead to more condensation when the warm air meets a cold surface, it is important to manage condensation in your home correctly or risk it developing into mould.

You might ask “why windows are such a big issue?” In most cases, it is the combination of materials used to construct the windows that are to blame. In Australia the Vast majority of windows are single glazed with frames constructed from aluminium. When single glazing is combined with a temperature conducting material, such as aluminium, the temperature from the outside environment will be transferred to the frame and the glass and this will be exposed to the air on the inside of the home. In winter this will create a cold surface inside the home, and as above when that warm moist air meets that cold surface the moisture is transferred, and you get condensation. The same can occur with double glazing in a conductive frame (such as aluminium).

So how does Ultimate Windows help with this? By using a combination of excellent low thermal transmission uPVC with double glazing; window frames from Ultimate Windows reduce the temperature transfer from outside to inside of your home. This, combined with the insulating properties of double glazing reduces the impact of the outside temperature on the inside surfaces of the windows. Simply, the surfaces do not get as cold. Therefore, there is a greatly reduced possibility of water vapour being deposited onto the surface. Simply put uPVC frames assist double glazing to stay warmer on the inside of the home in winter and reduce the incidence of condensation on the inside of your windows. But, considering this it is important to keep an eye on condensation if it forms with double glazing.

If you find condensation on your double-glazed windows it is important to note where it has formed as condensation on each surface of your window can mean something different. The below breakdown can assist with knowing your next steps:

  1. On the outside surface of the glass/frames, this is ok, the water is where it should be… outside.
  2. On the inside surface of the glass/frames. This is the above scenario where the window frame and glass surface on the inside is colder than the air in the room, it means that the colder temperature from the outside are transferring into the inside.
  3. Condensation forming on the inside of the double glazes glass unit. This is a problem in the glass unit itself. It will mean that the seal of the glass is compromised, and the double-glazed unit will need to be replaced.

If you have scenario 1, things are good. The window is doing its job and the cold surface is on the outside. Scenario 3 is a simple solution also (although inconvenient) a glazier should be able to sort this out for you quite easily. It is scenario 2 that will take a little bit more effort and thought.

Condensation can also be contributed to by the overall make up of the wall that the window is fitted into. The window can be a high performing, double glazed, thermally broken design and without the correct installation and sealing it can underperform. It always pays to have the conversation about the install process with your window supplier or builder and consider the insulation within the walls, floors and ceiling.

In summary, if you are experiencing condensation build up on the inside of your windows you need to assess the situation before making any calls on what you will do. Look at the glazing and the frames that you have and be sure to look at a thermally broken frame such as uPVC to boost and support the insulating benefits of a double glazing.

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