Energy Efficiency – Green & Sustainable

What Makes My Window Panes Wet?

Problem:  The window is wet on the room side of the glass for a few weeks in fall.

Solution:   Moisture has accumulated, over summer, in the structure of the house from cooking, showering, and even the family breathing. This can be overcome by having fans exhausting to the outside in the kitchen, bathrooms and laundry.

Problem:  The window is wet or has frost on the room side of the glass in the winter.

Step 1:  Keep window drapes up 2-3” above the window sill to allow for air circulation.

Step 2:  Install bath and kitchen exhaust fans that vent directly to the outside of the home.  Turn on the fan when room is in use.

Step 3:  Put timer switches on all exhaust fans; keep the fan running for a half hour after the user leaves the room.

Step 4:  Install a continuous rated exhaust fan in the highest level hallway or bath.  This fan should be variable speed from 30 to 110 cubic feet per minute (CFM).  Be sure there is an outside air supply into the furnace room in the basement.  Leave fan running 24/7.

Solution:  Take this slowly, one step at a time.  You may not need to do all 4 steps.

Problem: The window glass is wet or fogged in between 2 glass panes all year round, but most noticeable in the winter.

Solution:

Insulated glass:  The air seal is leaking and glass must be replaced.

Storm windows:  Glass putty must be in place and sealed tight to wood sash.  Wood sash must be sealed tight to the window frame.

All humidity problems are fixable.  Winter relative humidity levels are typically 30 to 40%.  On super cold days you may need to reduce the humidity to 25%.

Doug Hastings
MN Home Inspector, Minneapolis & St. Paul
ASHI Certified Inspector, ACI
Kaplan University, Home Inspection Lead Instructor

‘Pops’ Rob Leslie
Kaplan Professionals, Retired

 

Follow Cities Inspection’s on Facebook for more informational house tips.

I never had frost buildup on my windows before! Like many houses my 1974 rambler was in need of attention.  For the past 5 years my justification for postponing the needed exterior maintenance was the bad economy.  I felt investing a large sum of money in the house was not wise.  Some of you may agree with this and some Read More

Ventilation is not just air blowing in through an open window and it certainly isn’t the bathroom fan turned on to get rid of a bad smell.  In a previous blog, I stated that many older houses are now much tighter than the owners believe. Remodeling, changing surfaces and even a coat of paint can do a lot towards tightening Read More

State of MN doesn’t think so and has adopted a new energy code. Most realtors and homeowners don’t realize since June 1, 2009 our housing has been subject to new residential energy requirements.  If interested you can download the full Energy Code called Chapter 1322 at www.dli.state.mn.us/ccld/pdf/sbc_1322.pdf The entire MN Energy Code is essentially about 2 principles… Envelope Performance This Read More

Trim the bushes…then fix the grade! Winter is closer than you think, and it’s time to begin winterizing your house. Obviously I’m not talking about cleaning gutters at this stage! That will wait until after the leaves have fallen. Prune shrubs and bushes first. This will let you see if adjustments to grade are necessary and it will make it Read More