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How to Protect Wood Windows From Damage
Wood windows are popular because of their beautiful appearance and excellent insulating properties, but they can be damaged by exposure to the elements. With regular inspections and maintenance, though, they can last for decades. Here are some ways to keep your home’s wood windows in good condition and to quickly spot and address issues that may arise.
How Can Wood Windows Become Damaged?
Wood is susceptible to damage that can come with changes in the weather. As the outdoor temperature and humidity level rise and fall, wood can expand and contract. Regular exposure to harsh sunlight can cause wood to dry out and crack. Wood frames can become discolored and the paint may peel.
Moisture can soften wood, which can make it vulnerable to insects and wood. Wood windows that are exposed to moisture can also develop mold and mildew. Those issues can do more than make the windows look unattractive; they can endanger your family’s health.
How Should You Care for Wood Windows?
It’s important to clean and inspect all of your home’s wood windows twice a year. Getting rid of dirt and grime and taking a close look at each window, will allow you to notice problems, hopefully before they become too serious.
Clean each window frame on the inside and outside with a clean, dry cloth to remove dirt and debris. Then use mild soap, a small amount of water and a cloth, scouring pad or soft-bristled brush to scrub the frame. After you clean a window frame, wipe it with a dry cloth and let it air dry completely.
Look for any signs of damage, including cracks, peeling paint, discoloration and mold or mildew. Check the caulk and weather stripping to see if any is damaged and needs to be replaced.
How Can You Prevent Damage?
Harsh, direct sunlight can damage wood window frames. Oiling or waxing wood windows periodically can keep them from drying out and prevent cracking.
Drafts are a common problem associated with windows in general. Periodically caulking your wood windows can prevent air leaks.
If your home is located in an area that gets a lot of rain or is near a body of water, you have to be concerned about potential moisture damage. You can install awnings above wood windows to minimize the amount of rainwater or melted snow that comes into contact with the wood frames and protect them from damage.
If you notice signs of moisture damage inside windows, you can prevent more serious issues by reducing the moisture level in the house. Running a dehumidifier can help you take care of the problem.
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