Robert Lamure | Looking for a clear view on leaky window repair
Question: Hi Robert, I live in Canyon Country and I recently had three leaky windows in my house. I was contacted by a window company and they told me that I had two options: installing a “new” window or installing a modified window. From a cost standpoint, the upgrade is very attractive, but before we make a decision, we would like to hear from you as we have read your articles over the years and value your opinion.
— Jerry D.
Reply: Jerry, my take on retrofitting versus nailed or nailed windows is that if you can afford to install nailed windows, effortlessly, invest in them. Nailed windows, of course, when properly installed and ensuring that the waterproofing paper around the installation is in good condition, is a guarantee that there are no leaks due to windows.
Upgraded windows are good, but they require maintenance to seal and will undoubtedly fail long before windows are nailed down. Retrofitted windows require, especially for south-facing installations, that about every two to four years you must remove and reseal them for a watertight effect. Most of us go on with our lives and tend to forget about this huge maintenance job, and only when they leak do we remember that we should have done it.
By then, typically, you’ve experienced a leak in your home and, depending on the severity, sometimes massive and costly damage. I personally have never installed and never will install a modified window, but I understand when the budget allows only this option. In this case, I strongly recommend that you somehow remind yourself that you either seal them yourself or do so at least every three years, especially on south-facing elevation. Good luck.
Robert Lamouret has over 40 years of experience as a general contractor with separate electrical and plumbing contracting licenses. He owns IMS Construction Inc. in Valencia. His opinion is his own, not necessarily that of The Signal. The opinions expressed in this column are not intended to replace the advice of a qualified contractor after that contractor has carried out a thorough visual inspection. Send questions to Robert at [email protected].
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