Can your fogged-up windows be repaired?
“it’s kind of a drag…” those were the lyrics from an old song that conveys my feelings when I notice that one of my insulated, double paned windows has lost its seal and fogged up. Most of us have insulated glass windows and they are pretty effective in providing some insulation to the house but when they lose their seal then moisture enters and will condense leaving droplets or mineral deposit between the two panes of glass which cannot be cleaned! Since their invention in the 1970’s there were only a couple of solutions- the first and cheapest on is to lower the blinds and decide not to notice them. But if the window is your favorite at the kitchen sink watching the hummingbird feeder then you want to be able to see.
Traditionally you either can replace the entire movable sash with its wooden, vinyl or aluminum frame or more recently window repairmen would break out the old window and carefully fit a new prefabricated glass unit in its place. It’s not cheap! But what if someone invented a way to get the moisture out of the existing window? Wow!
Indeed, there is a process that is available in Middle Georgia to do just that!!! I have not yet seen it and suspect there may be a few problems but here is the process:
The window repair man will arrive and drill two small holes into the outside pane of the window without removing it from the window unit. One hole at a top corner and another at the lower corner diagonally. They then squirt various liquid solutions between the panes of glass to wash out the moisture and another solution to dissolve mineral deposits. While they are injecting the fluids in at the top of the window, they are sucking out the fluids through the bottom hole until the interior of the windows is clean. Finally, at least one of the glass repair companies inject a solution that is supposed to prevent the mineral deposits from forming again…
Ultimately all of the systems that I saw would install a tiny vent over the holes that in theory will allow the temperature of the air between the panes of glass to equalize and prevent condensation-this same air is one of the insulating factors in double paned windows. They all claim that the windows will dry out to be clear!
It sounds really good BUT, if there are little vents left to the open air then that same humidity laden air will enter between the panes of glass again, and given the right conditions it seems as though it will condense again. One of the companies says that their coating which is injected when they wash out the old condensation will prevent mineral deposits from forming and that the humidity will disappear.
I hope it is true, I know of at least one company offering this process in Middle Georgia. They also claim to have a 10 year transferable warranty and that the cost may be half that of replacing the condensed window. If you know of anyone who has had this done, please give me a call and give me a review.
Ned Dominick has been inspecting homes with fogged up windows since 1978. He and his qualified inspectors have examined over 28,000 local homes. For more go to his website at www.housetalk.net or give Ned a call at 478-738-0893.