Often in winter, homeowners find traces of condensation on their aluminum windows. Sometimes, the condensation can be worryingly excessive.
We call this condition window sweating.
But why do aluminum windows sweat in winter? And is it harmful in any way?
Let’s find the answer to these questions…
We know air contains a certain amount of water in form of water vapors. These water vapors are invisible to human eye under most conditions and account for the varying humidity levels in the air present in and around us.
The tendency of air to hold water depends on its temperature. The higher the temperature of air, the greater the amount of water it can hold. That is why during summers, humidity is a frequent problem, while in winters it is almost never a problem.
How does this link to window seating?
Your aluminum windows have a high U-value, meaning, they readily transfer heat. In winters, when the outdoor temperature drops, any indoor heat present in a conditioned space, escapes through your aluminum windows. As a result, the frame of your aluminum window becomes colder. The air that is present inside your room is warmer.
As this warm air comes in contact with the frame of your aluminum windows, it undergoes a change in temperature (remember: your aluminum window is at a lower temperature than the air present inside your room).
With this change in temperature, the ability of air to hold water also changes. Air is now colder and so it cannot retain the same moisture levels. It releases some of the moisture, and this released moisture can be seen in the form of droplets on your window and window frame.
Your aluminum window starts to sweat.
Eventually, the water droplets pool at the bottom of your aluminum window and if not cleaned in a timely manner, it can cause mold to grow. Development of mold can be harmful for your health.
So what can you do to keep your windows from sweating?
There are number of ways through which you can address this problem.
- You can replace the aluminum frame of your window with a low U-value frame. Examples of low U-value frames include wood, UPVC and vinyl.
- You can use a dehumidifier in your conditioned space. This will help you lower the humidity levels in the room.
- You can insulate your aluminum frame to reduce heat transfer. This would keep your frame warmer and prevent condensation buildup.
Do you have any other questions about window sweating or about your potential window replacement options?
Feel free to reach out; our team will be happy to serve you.