Why do Windows Crack

Why do Windows Crack? and Other Common Window Questions

Why do windows fog or crack? What do you do if a wood window gets stuck? We’ve compiled our answers to your most common window questions.

Why do Windows Crack two windows with grilles

(Photo Credit: Flikr)

Why do my windows fog?
Condensation between panes of insulating glass can develop when the seal between the panes of glass fails and allows moisture to leak in. This typically occurs in older windows or doors. It’s not uncommon to walk into older homes and see windows on the sunny side of the home have condensation and fogging between the panes. This same fogging can occur on any side of the home, but tends to be more prevalent on the sunny sides because the additional heat from the sun tends to accelerate the seal failure.

Making the right window choice when purchasing replacement windows and doors can help ensure you have a clear view for years.

“Choosing and investing in a quality glass system is an important decision in buying new or replacing old windows,” says Pella Corporation engineer Aaron Ryan. “Our windows and doors are tested for quality and include insulating glass to lower energy bills, reduce fading damage to interior fabrics and provide a more comfortable home.”

In state-of-the-art product-testing facilities, Pella subjects windows to harsh conditions — the burning rays of the sun, salt air, acid rain, excessive humidity, extreme heat and cold, high wind and driving rain. These stringent measures help ensure that Pella windows have the quality homeowners expect.

Why do Windows Crack cracked windows

(Photo Credit: Pixabay)

Why did my windows crack?
Imagine pouring cold water into a baking dish you just pulled out of the oven. Not the smartest thing to do, we know, but it is a good example of how thermal stress can crack a window. Think about stress cracks like this: As the cold liquid touches the hot dish, there’s an uneven increase in the thermal expansion of the walls of the baking dish. If the expansion is significant enough and the dish is thin or compromised by a nick or weak spot, the baking dish may break. 

Now think about your windows and where they are located on your home. 

Stress cracks more often occur in large windows that are located on a shaded or recessed wall. The shadows created by these locations set up a quickly changing stress factor between glass that is in the sunny, warmer area and glass that is in the cooler, shaded area. If the stress gets to be too much, from the glass expanding in the heat or shrinking in the cold, it can crack.  

 “It’s easy to identify a stress crack if you can see the edge of your glass,” Ryan says. “The crack will extend about a half-inch straight away from the glass edge.”

So how can you fix a stress crack? If you have Pella® windows in your home and discover a stress crack, connect with your local Pella representative for assistance repair or replacement. Call the Pella customer service team at 800-374-4758 or visit our website to find a Pella representative near you.

Why do windows crack old weathered windows

(Photo Credit: Pixabay)

What do you do if a wooden window gets stuck?
There are a few things that can cause a wood window to swell and stick — wet weather or excess paint being two of the biggest culprits. Here are a few ways you can pry it loose:

  • If you suspect humidity to be at fault: Start by aiming a hairdryer set to low heat at the sash along the window frame on either side until the swelling goes down a bit, then carefully work the window free.

  • If you think it’s a paint issue: Carefully slide a craft or utility knife between the window sash and the stop to break the paint seal.

Have a window problem or question? Send it our way and we’ll do our best to answer it here on the Better View Blog!

This article was written by

Nicolle Picray, Content Marketing & Social Media, Pella Windows & Doors

A self-proclaimed Social Media Geek and DIY aficionado, Nicolle is a member of the Pella Marketing team, focused on content creation and curation. In her free time she can be found pillaging thrift shops for furniture projects, attempting to rationalize with her 4 year old daughter, and editing her husband’s honey-do list.

Inspired Design. Exceptional Detail.

Get inspiration and upcoming local offers...