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  • Moisture inside windows in winter

    Hello fellas,
    I have noticed in many homes and also in mine that in cold weather moisture forms on the inside of the windows and often forms ice at the bottom. This gets on the wood as it melts and I am always wiping it off.
    Two questions;
    What causes this?
    Can anything be done to prevent this?
    Thanks,
    TPS

  • #2
    Re: Moisture inside windows in winter

    The moisture is caused by the warm moist air inside the house making contact with the cold glass--similar to moisture forming on the outside of an ice cold beer on a hot day. Prevention can be in many ways. What kind of windows do you have? Are they single pane, thermopane, do you have storm windows? A little more info and we can help.
    Jim

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    • #3
      Re: Moisture inside windows in winter

      Thanks Jim,
      These windows seem to be double pane and vinyl. When I clean them they seem thick so I think they are double pane. My old single pane windows were thinner for sure.
      Thanks again-TPS

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      • #4
        Re: Moisture inside windows in winter

        For Years ,I have been installing retro windows and I.G. Glass.
        This comes from Millguard Engs. Particularly in bedrooms, People give off a lot of moisture from their breathing at night. Crack open a window , and that will help a lot.
        I can build anything You want , if you draw a picture of it , on the back of a big enough check .

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        • #5
          Re: Moisture inside windows in winter

          If you are getting a lot of condensation on th windows, you may be running to high a humidity content. Several things can cause this. Are you running a humidifier? If so, you need to adjust the settings to correspond with the outside temp. The colder it gets the lower the settings.If no humidifier, your house may be sealed "too tight"Do you have a fresh air intake? Or, several other possibilities are: dryer venting in house; a lot of cooking that creates steam; excess shower time;or anything else that dumps moisture in the house. One other thing--do you have a good seal around the sash when the window are closed?

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          • #6
            Re: Moisture inside windows in winter

            What kind of heaters are you running in the house ?
            Are they unvented ?

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            • #7
              Re: Moisture inside windows in winter

              I too have this problem. L have an electric heat pump (no dehumidifier). My windows are vinyl double pane glass. I have moisture build up at teh very bottom and at the point where the bottom and top sash meet and lock. The seal is tight at the bottom, middle and top. I have used my aircompressor and stood out side (during the summer!) and blew air all around the windows while my wife was inside and checked while I went around the window.

              The moisture forms only on very cold nights. I do have mini blinds and thermal curtains that are closed at night. When these are left open, no moisture forms. but leaving them open would seem to defeat their purpose. Ron

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              • #8
                Re: Moisture inside windows in winter

                It's elementary my dear Watson as Inspector Kluso use to say ( smile ..ya I know ..it wasn't him)
                First of all .. the cause ... the air in our homes has some moisture in it, the amount of moisture is measured by it's Dew Point, the temperature at which the air becomes saturated and becomes visible. An example .. if the temperature is 70 F and the Dew Point is 50 F, and the air is cooled, when the temperature reaches 50F, the air becomes saturated. As the temperature decreases, moisture condenses out of the air - as dew, or cloud, or in our case moisture on the glass of beer or our windows. On warmer days, the outside air is warmer than 50F ( in this example) so the house windows will not cool enough to become colder than the Dew Point and cause condensation.
                How to avoid it .. well .. either lower the amount of air in the room or keep the windows warmer than the Dew Point. Lowering the moisture content is a bit more difficult than warming the windows.
                You may be able to come up with ways of doing that, more window insulation, cover windows on outside etc ..but, they may not be practical. One way is to keep blinds open a bit and put a fan blowing onto the window to keep air next to glass window from cooling to it's dew point.
                There are no doubt other ways.
                By the way, in case you were going to ask, ice forms at the bottom of the window because cold air is heavier than ( relatively) warm air and flows down the window to the bottom.. both on the inside and between the panes.
                Well for whayt it might be worth ..that's my thoughts.

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                • #9
                  Re: Moisture inside windows in winter

                  Thank you chazz. I do have and use those plastic curved air deflectors on the vents. They are supposed to deflect the air to the floor. maybe I should not use them and just let the air flow up. That way some will going up by the windows. Ron

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                  • #10
                    Re: Moisture inside windows in winter

                    having your blinds open will make a huge difference by allowing warmer air to creat equilibrium between your house and outside...also just because its dual pane doesnt mean the problem is completly solved it will help but if your seal is gone you will get an excess build up of condensation..if your glass looks "fogged or has a rainbow tinge" your seal is gone and consider replacing the window or atleast the glass. If your jams/trim is getting wet on the inside consider cleaning your track, tilt in the windows and poke your head outside and check if your drainholes are open if they're clogged it will result in alot of water build up.

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