If you’ve just had your windows replaced, you might be surprised to wake up one morning and see condensation clouding your view. Window condensation is relatively common with new windows, and while it’s not always a bad sign, there are a few different types of window condensation, each carrying a different level of concern.
Let’s look at what to do, and why you might have condensation inside your new windows, outside your new windows, or in between window panes.
Condensation Inside New Windows
If you’re noticing condensation inside new windows — on the interior side of the window in your home — there are a few reasons it might be occurring. It’s important to figure out the cause, but first make sure you’re taking care of any pooling water. Condensation that builds up on your windows can collect and cause damage to the window and any wood around it. With that in mind, let’s take a look at a few common causes of condensation inside your new windows:
The most common cause of condensation inside new windows is steam. If there’s steam coming from the shower or hot pots and pans, that will cling to the inside of the window. Plants, which generate humidity, can also contribute to interior condensation. This is not a cause for concern.
In general, you can just move the plant away from the window, turn on the bathroom fan, or wait for the steam in your home to dissipate. When it does, the condensation inside your new windows will fade away.
Pay attention to where you’re noticing interior condensation. If you’re only seeing the problem on one or two windows, you might have an air leak around the window. The air leak is allowing moist air to come into the house which is causing condensation inside your new window.
If you suspect an air leak is the cause of interior condensation on your new window, call a certified professional that works with the brand of windows you’ve had installed. You should be able to make a warranty claim and have the window resealed or even replaced, if necessary.
High Humidity in Your Home
If you’ve ruled out both steam and air leaks, but are still seeing condensation on the inside of your new windows, you may have a bigger problem on your hands. It’s possible that your home is not being properly ventilated.
When your home has poor ventilation, all the moisture in your home, from cooking, hot water, and more, will collect in the air over time. If the water vapor has nowhere to escape, it will condense and cling to your windows, as well as furniture, carpet, flooring, and even inside your walls.
Sometimes, homeowners start to see this happen after they’ve installed new windows because the new windows are much more energy-efficient than the old ones. While the older windows may have allowed for air to escape around them, the new ones are tightly sealed, which can cause the condensation to finally show up.
While there are a few quick solutions, like investing in a dehumidifier, making sure your fans are going in the bathroom, above the stove, and in the home itself, this tends to be an indication of a larger ventilation problem in your home. It’s a good idea to talk to a building professional, as continued moisture buildup in your home can lead to mold, mildew, and even rot.
Condensation on the Outside of New Windows
Condensation on the outside of new windows is actually a good sign. It shows that your new windows are doing their job — sealing outdoor temperatures and humidity out, rather than letting it flow into your home.
Typically, condensation on the outside of new windows happens when it’s just slightly cooler and more humid outside than it is inside your home. Because your new windows aren’t allowing any heat transfer, that humidity condenses on the outside of your window. This type of condensation will go away as soon as it warms up outside, and as the sun hits your windows.
Condensation Between Panes of your New Windows
The final place you might find condensation on your new windows is between the window panes. Double-paned windows are a top choice for most homeowners these days, and manufacturers typically fill the space between those panes with an insulating gas. Once the space is filled, the panes are sealed.
If you’re noticing condensation happening between the panes of your new windows, first double-check that the condensation is actually between the window panes. Take a few minutes to clean both sides of the windows. Certain cleaning products can leave a haze on the window that might look like condensation, but that you should be able to wipe off.
If cleaning doesn’t solve the problem and your windows are new, you will likely need to make a warranty claim. Condensation between window panes indicates that the seal holding the insulating gas between the window panes has failed. Your window will need professional attention. In some cases, a service professional may be able to replace the glass pane, but in most cases, you’ll likely need a window replacement.
Again, if your windows are new, they should still be under warranty. Most reputable window manufacturers will provide replacement service for free.
Having problems with condensation inside your new windows? If you’ve recently installed North Star, MI Windows, Andersen Windows, or Marvin Windows, you can find their window warranties on our site. In general, any of these condensation concerns that result from a defect in the window will be covered by these brands, if your windows are new.
If Zeeland Lumber & Supply partnered with you on your new windows, you can also submit a service request directly on our site. Just fill out the form with images of the problem you’re experiencing, and we’ll reach out to schedule your service as soon as possible.