Maintenance Tips for Keeping Your Impact Windows & Doors in Top Condition

Have you recently installed impact windows and doors in your home? If so, there’s no doubt you’re enjoying all the benefits they offer such as a reduction in noise pollution from the outdoors, higher energy efficiency, and of course, added peace of mind knowing how strong and durable they are when it comes to severe weather.

But impact windows, like so many other upgrades in the home, are an investment so you want to be sure that you take care of that investment. To ensure your impact windows stay in tip-top condition, there are some general maintenance tips and steps that we recommend. The good news is that if you stay on top of maintenance, it doesn’t have a chance to spiral out of control.

Let this act as your guide to keeping your impact windows and doors in pristine condition.

The Importance of a Regular Cleaning Routine

One of the easiest maintenance steps you can take to keep your impact windows in good condition is to clean them regularly. In this sense, they are no different than regular windows that you would need to keep clean.

Over time it’s only natural for impact windows to get dirt, dust, sand, salt residue, and debris build up. The exterior will get much dirtier than the interior, but don’t ignore the dust that builds up indoors. Sometimes windows can look fine from a distance, but as you get closer you’ll see they have a layer of dirt buildup on them.

Cleaning these windows is relatively simple, here are the basic steps to follow:

1. Fill a clean bucket with a couple of drops of gentle liquid dish soap and cool water. Be sure to give it a good mix so the soap is incorporated well.

 

2. Get a clean microfiber cloth that is soft and won’t leave scratches, plus a mop with a long arm/pole (make sure it’s also soft and scratch-resistant).

 

3. Use the cloth or mop to gently wipe the windows, making sure to get the entire surface. The cloth or mop should be damp, not soaking wet.

 

4. Windows will then need to be rinsed with water, you can use the garden hose for the exterior windows.

 

5. Smears and streaks can be erased with a homemade vinegar and water mixture.

 

6. Use a scratch-resistant clean squeegee as the last step.

 

A couple of things to remember when cleaning windows are never to use harsh chemicals, or any material that could scratch the windows, and to be sure the bucket and cleaning tools are clean before you start using them. Microfiber cloths are always a great choice as they don’t leave behind fluffs and fibers. After using one of these types of cloths you can throw it in the washing machine so it’s ready to go for the next cleaning.

As for how often to clean the windows, a deep cleaning should happen at least twice a year, whereas regular cleanings should be monthly, or more if needed. If you’ve had a big storm that left a lot of dirt and debris on the outside or the inside windows are covered in smears and fingerprints, that’s a sign they need a good cleaning.

Monitor the Condition of Your Windows and Doors

Besides cleaning, you also want to stay on top of the condition of your impact windows and doors. Yes, they are built to be incredibly strong and durable but that doesn’t mean they will last forever. Things can still happen and it’s best to catch it early on.

Some of the areas that can start to show wear and tear and compromise the integrity of the impact windows are:

  • Frames
  • Seals
  • Hardware
  • The glass

When inspecting the windows you want to look for red flags such as cracks, missing pieces, damage, and even deterioration. Should you notice any of these, you’ll want to repair your windows immediately. If you’re unsure if the windows need servicing/repairs, you can always give us a call.

Lubrication and Hardware Maintenance

Also in the realm of window maintenance are lubricating the locks, hinges, and other hardware. This just ensures they work smoothly and aren’t sticking. Lubricating the hardware can also help to prevent cracks and breakage. This is also a great time to tighten anything that has come loose, again ensuring that the integrity of the impact windows is intact. If you feel unsure about how to tighten hardware, or how tight to make it – it’s always best to call a professional to come do it.

When choosing the right lubricant to use, again you don’t want anything that can cause damage to the materials and you need to be mindful of the climate conditions. A silicon-based lubricant is usually a great option, but don’t spray it directly on the track. Instead, spray it on a clean dry microfiber cloth and then wipe it on the jamb liner, window tracks (inside and outside), and the weatherstripping. While doing this, be sure to open and close the window a few times as this helps to spread the lubricant evenly.

Weather Stripping Replacement

Weather stripping is one of the most important features of the window when it comes to waterproofing and energy efficiency. This is what keeps a tight seal on your windows and doors. Weather stripping does have a lifespan though, and eventually, it will need to be replaced. Generally speaking, this is something homeowners can do but you need to be sure you’re doing it at the right time.

Some signs to watch for that would indicate weather stripping has reached its maximum lifespan include:

  • Cracks
  • Missing pieces
  • Lifting away from the frame
  • Hardened
  • Discolored
  • Light shining through (proves the seal is no longer there)

Professional Maintenance and Repairs

While there are plenty of things you can do to maintain the integrity of your impact windows and doors, some repairs are better left to the professionals. You never want to jeopardize your safety while cleaning or fixing the windows, nor do you accidentally want to use the wrong hardware, material, or steps when repairing them.

Experts tend to suggest an annual inspection by a professional who can highlight potential areas of concern and make any repairs necessary. Be sure to look for a company that has a solid reputation in the community, and is known for their installation and maintenance of impact windows and doors.

Seasonal Care and Preparation

Our final tip is to be mindful of seasonal care and preparation. Just like other aspects of the exterior of your home, some steps are season-specific. Before heading into storm/hurricane season, for example, you want to be sure that any issues have been repaired and that the windows will be strong and safe. This could be a great time to schedule your annual maintenance inspection.

Installing storm shutters to be used in conjunction with impact windows may also be wise, as it gives that added layer of protection during hurricane season. It’s also best to trim back overgrown branches and tree limbs that may be up against the windows or doors.

The Atlantic Hurricane season in the United States begins on June 1 and lasts until November 30. You don’t want to leave things too late, so it’s best to designate the month of May as your seasonal care and preparation month.

Ensuring Your Impact Windows Look Great and Perform Beautifully

All of these maintenance tips and suggestions will ensure that your impact windows and doors not only look great but also perform as intended during severe weather. If you have any questions at all regarding the proper maintenance of your windows or repairs please don’t hesitate to call us at (305) 925-0818.

 

Sources

https://www.businessinsider.com/guides/home/how-to-clean-windows-with-vinegar#:~:text=For%20most%20windows%2C%20combine%20equal,2%20tsp%20of%20dish%20detergent.

https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/climo/#:~:text=The%20official%20hurricane%20season%20for,%2DAugust%20and%20mid%2DOctober.

Let's get in touch

Give us a call or drop by anytime, we endeavour to answer all enquiries within 24 hours on business days.