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Windows with failed seals - replace pane of glass or replace windows?

pulper11's picture

I am looking at purchasing a house.  I've had the inspection done and one of the items reported was a number of windows with failed seals.  The rest of my post has been caught by the spam filter.  I'll see if I can post the rest of my message some other way.

While I was with the inspector, he indicated that these could be repaired rather than replaced.  He indicated that I would have to have a new pane of glass installed and that he estimated it would be about $100 to $125 each.  There's about 6-7 windows with this problem so I wasn't concerned.

I later talked with a window installer.  I told him what the inspector told me and this installer said that while this is a possible solution, if the window is still twisting, I would have to replace the window pane again in another 3 years or so.  He said I should go with a mid-level type window that would be about $500 each.

Unfortunately, I didn't understand some of what he was talking about so I'm hoping someone here can assist me with this.  I also recognize that this guy is in the business of selling/installing new windows so his advice might not be the best.  I recognize that having new windows would solve this problem for a longer time but I didn't realize that the inspector's solution would only last for about 3 years.  

I am not completely sure what type of windows this house has (still a newbie) but I have posted a few (albeit poor) pictures of them so hopefully this helps.

Any advice is appreciated.  Thank you.

here i'll try to add what the (post #206736, reply #1 of 4)

here i'll try to add what the spam filter wouldn't let me post.

While I was with the inspector, he indicated that these could be repaired rather than replaced.  He indicated that I would have to have a new pane of glass installed and that he estimated it would be about $100 to $125 each.  There's about 6-7 windows with this problem so I wasn't concerned.

I went to Home Depot in the area and ran into and talked with the head window installer.  I told him what the inspector told me and the HD guy said that while this is a possible solution, if the window is still twisting, I would have to replace the window pane again in another 3 years or so.  He suggested going with a mid-level type window that he estimated would be about $500 each installed.

Unfortunately, I didn't understand some of what he was talking about so I'm hoping someone here can assist me with this.  I also recognize that this guy is in the business of selling/installing new windows so his advice might not be the best.  I recognize that having new windows would solve this problem for a longer time but I didn't realize that the inspector's solution would only last for about 3 years.  

I am not completely sure what type of windows this house has (still a newbie) but I have posted a few (albeit poor) pictures of them so hopefully this helps.

Can someone here let me know if what the Home Depot guy is suggesting is true? If so, is there anyway that I can tell if the window is still "twisting"?

Thanks!

pulp (post #206736, reply #2 of 4)

What yr was the house built? 

The windows you show look like vinyl replacements (no close up so I could be wrong).

I'm thinking the head installer is looking for work.

 

 

Glass can be replaced.

Never heard of twisting causing the seal between the panes to lose their seal.

What you've got in there now (if I'm seeing them right) is not the cadillac of windows.  This might move you to upgrade.  What did the tape on the sash/frame signify in the first photo?

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.


http://www.quittintime.com/

 


pulp (post #206736, reply #3 of 4)

Window manufacturers will sometimes label the latching hardware if they're proud of their product.

Another place to look is on the spacer between the panes of glass.  Might show the window manufacturer (or glass supplier) and the date of manufacture stamped on the spacer.  Takes good eyes and good light to read it.

 

One way to check for LOW E coating-hold a match up to the glass.  You should see 4 reflections of the flame.  One (the second from the inside usually) will be a different color.  That is the low e coating.

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.


http://www.quittintime.com/

 


Unclear what the guy meant by (post #206736, reply #4 of 4)

Unclear what the guy meant by "twisting".  If the sashes work without binding there's no twisting going on from the framing/installation (or at least not enough to cause seal failure), and there's really not enough "meat" in the sash frames themselves to cause them to twist and break seals.

If you can identify the manufacturer, replacement sashes may be avilable.  In many cases the replacement sashes will be cheaper than having the glass replaced (by rebuilding the existing sashes).  But rebuilding the sashes is also an option.

Replacing the windows only makes sense if you want to upgrade the windows (and there you must beware of fly-by-night window replacement people -- in an apalling number of cases the replacement window performs worse than the original, due both to poor quality and poor installation).


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville