If It Ain't Broke, Don't Replace It!

If It Ain't Broke, Don't Replace It!

A common misconception when it comes to broken windows, be it broken glass or an argon gas leak that has caused the window to discolor, is that the entire window frame now needs to be replaced. Myth. The window frame is just fine!

In fact, replacing the glass of a window frame is substantially cheaper and far easier than most realize. Side note – this is assuming the window is a double pane with vinyl frame.

Broken glass is generally easy to spot, it could be a crack in a window or something like a baseball through the glass… and everything in-between. But how do you spot an argon gas leak, otherwise known as a broken thermopane seal?  

Sometimes it’s easy, this might look like hundreds of spots on the glass, almost as if you’re looking through the lens of a microscope into a petri dish of bacteria. It could also be filled with moisture, fogging up and building condensation. The window might shine odd colors, especially when the sun hits it, the glass itself isn’t clear anymore. No matter what it will be impossible to clean off, because the issue is between the panes of glass, something that cannot be accessed.

Home inspectors will use a special light to check every window in the home for gas leaks during inspections, as they aren’t always visible at first.   

If the glass is broken or gas has leaked from a window in your home, you want to call a glass company, not a window company (if your windows are under warranty, a gas leak could be covered at no cost – always start there! Many quality window manufacturers have lifetime warranties for thermopane seal leaks).

The glass company will measure the glass area in need of replacement and then order the new glass. Installation takes anywhere from 10-20 minutes per glass piece. What you’ll find out from this process is that half the frame of your window is truly decorative – easily removed and placed back without harm to the window. A commercial double-sided tape is what holds the glass in place.

Expect a standard piece of glass with install to cost anywhere from $250-300, larger in the $400 range. Remember to check the manufacturer for your windows in case they’re under warranty first!

Should you need a reference to a glass company, reach out! This is a inspection item I deal with all the time in my business.



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