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Winter's Effects on Your Home's Windows, Doors, & More

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Winter isn’t coming—it’s here. In Birmingham, we’re set to have one of the top 5 coldest Christmases on record, and that trend may very well continue as we start the New Year. That means it’s time to start thinking about the steps that can protect your home from the chill, whether that’s the right repairs or replacing your windows. Cold weather—snow or no—can do a lot of damage to your home. So, let’s explore the best ways to protect key areas and avoid costly repairs. 

How Will Cold Affect Your Doors, Windows, Sidings, and Gutters?

There are lots of ways that the cold can lead to issues with your doors and windows. For instance, you might notice ice formation. Ice will form in open spaces between the doors and windows. This means it’s more difficult to close them without damaging the weatherstripping. Once this is cracked, it won’t provide a seal, allowing cold air and water into your home. 

Wooden doors, windows, and sidings can also all shrink in cold weather and may warm in the presence of moisture. If this occurs, then you may need to consider a window repair or even a window replacement. Siding can also crack around the joints and corners, especially when installed during cold weather conditions. 

Icicles forming in gutters can also cause damage, subjecting them to additional levels of pressure. Ice damage and pressure could lead to anything from warping to cracking. Though typically uncommon this far south, wild winter storms could even lead to ice dams forming around your roof—solid ridges of ice that keep water from draining properly off of your roof.

Consider using gutter guards to prevent different materials from clogging up your gutters. 

How Can You Spot Cold-Related Home Issues? 

To avoid needing a window replacement or new siding installation/repair, it’s important to be aware of the signs of cold-related issues and the steps that you can take to keep your home in the best condition. 

Thermal Expansion/Contraction 

The clearest sign of a cold-related issue with your windows and doors is thermal expansion or contraction. You might notice that your windows or doors are difficult to open and close or will not close all the way. This is because the material has changed and no longer fits correctly. 

Damaged or Bubbling Paint

There are a few ways that you can protect your windows from the cold. First, check that the paint isn’t damaged or bubbling. You can sand old paint like this away and repaint it with a weather-resistant product. This will protect your windows from cold and moisture damage. 

You can also apply wax to wooden materials. Just make sure that the wood is clean before you apply the wax to the surface. 

Poorly Fitted Doors Letting in Cool Air

You may also want to check whether your front and back doors fit correctly. If your doors scrape along the floor when you open or close them, stick when you try to move them, or don’t lock or latch properly, you may need a new door installation. Realigning or replacing tough doors will help eliminate drafts and reduce the levels of cold air entering your home. 

What Kind of Windows Beat Cold Best?

Certain types of windows are better for beating the colder weather. That’s something to consider if you are considering a new window replacement instead of a window repair. While we may not experience the harshest winter weather here in Birmingham, protecting your home against the elements goes both ways, keeping your home cool in the summer, too. 

Choose energy-efficient, insulating glass frames that can withstand Alabama’s summers but protect you from those stray polar blasts we get, too. Examples include:

  • High-quality vinyl window frames
  • Aluminum frames with a built-in thermal barrier
  • Composite window frames (a mix of plastics and wood byproducts)

In terms of the panes for the windows, triple-pane windows will keep your home warm while Low Emissivity (or Low-E) glass coatings that trap heat in the winter and reflect it in the summer are also becoming a popular choice.

Choose Legend Windows 

If you need to prevent cold air from getting into your home or you require a window repair due to cold damage, our team at Legend Windows can help. We offer professional installations, utilizing the best materials and products to keep your home warm throughout the winter season. Contact our team today to find out more or arrange a window installation or repair. 

Full-Service Window, Door, Siding, and Gutter Experts in Birmingham, AL

No matter your home’s architectural style or your family’s energy efficiency needs, Legend Windows has the local expertise and inventory to recommend a personalized solution for your home. Proudly serving the Birmingham metro area for over 25 years, we’re your source for high-quality home materials. Get your free consultation today by reaching out online or calling (205) 953-6784.