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Understanding Condensation in Aluminum Windows

  • Transcript

    LESLIE: Colleen in Florida has some condensation around your windows. What’s going on?

    COLLEEN: Well, I wake up some mornings and when I’m opening my blinds I’ll notice that there’s condensation around some of my windows. Some mornings it’s around all of my windows. Is that something I should worry about or is that just a simple change in temperature inside and outside? Or there is something (inaudible)?

    LESLIE: Tell us about your windows if you can, Colleen. Are they single-pane, double-pane, vinyl, aluminum?

    COLLEEN: They’re aluminum windows, double-pane.

    TOM: Well, aluminum windows are not my favorite kind of windows, Colleen, because they do transfer the temperature between outside and inside pretty readily. They’re not the most efficient kind. So, for example, in the … in the summertime, if you have central air conditioning, you may get some condensation on those windows. And that’s, you know, usually not damaging but it is certainly annoying.

    COLLEEN: Yes, it is. (laughing)

    TOM: If you had a better insulated window – one that was Energy Star rated, that had a warm, wood frame or a vinyl frame or a fiberglass frame – I don’t think that would be happening. But it doesn’t surprise me that it is happening with an aluminum frame window because it really is just about the least efficient window you could have.

    COLLEEN: Wow. OK. We just bought this home about nine months ago. We were told it was energy efficient.

    TOM: I would have to disagree with that if it’s an aluminum window.

    COLLEEN: OK. OK. So …

    TOM: But there is good news, Colleen. This is a great time to think about replacing windows because there are energy tax credits available now. There may also be credits available from your utility company. But between now and I think it’s January of 2008, if you replace windows with …

    LESLIE: You have to do the repair in ’06 or ’07.

    TOM: Yeah, if you replace it with an Energy Star rated window, then you can get some energy tax credits on that as well.

    COLLEEN: That’s great.

    TOM: Alright, Colleen?

    COLLEEN: Thank you.

    TOM: You’re welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.

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