Don't Fix Foggy Windows

January 28th 2016

I've received many inquiries from homeowners concerned about foggy windows.

What they are noticing is their windows are foggy because the sealed glass unit (dual pane glass) has been compromised, allowing water vapour to get inside the window pane, showing up as moisture or condensation on the inside of the sealed glass unit.

During my 50-plus years in the home-improvement industry, I've seen my fair share of products come on the market that do not work as advertised.

You may have heard or seen advertising for window "restoration" services, which in some cases offer a 10-year warranty or longer. This service is promoted as a less-expensive and less-disruptive way to solve the problem of foggy windows when compared to insulated glass or total window replacement.

Typically, these companies will drill small holes in the corners of the glass, then push compressed air through the window to remove moisture. Then they install valves in the holes to allow any moisture that may get inside the window glass to escape.

Folks, let me explain to you why this process is fundamentally flawed. A glass window sealed unit is exactly that: a sealed unit.

No air or moisture is supposed to get in between the panes of glass.

If you noticed moisture on the inside of your sealed unit, it is time to replace the window sealed unit or the entire window, including the frame. By design, a window sealed unit is meant to keep all air and moisture outside.

When sealed units are made, they are manufactured in a controlled factory environment to ensure the sealed unit is air sealed.

It is important to note the quality of a factory-sealed glass unit cannot be replicated outside of a controlled factory environment.

If the sealed unit is allowed to "breathe" or vent, it cannot effectively do what it's meant to do.

The only way to properly solve the problem of foggy windows is to have new window glass installed or have a new window installed, including the window glass and frame, such as an energy-efficient vinyl-framed window.

Replacing your units can cost a little more than the window restoration process, but it is the proper way to address the issue.