Window caulk is one of the cheapest and easiest ways to insulate your home more efficiently. However, it's also easy to make mistakes when applying it which can lead to lower energy efficiency, water damage, or mold growth. Here are some common mistakes homeowners make when caulking their windows and how to avoid them.
Consider Moving Components
The mistake: Applying caulk around the outside of windows without considering moving components.
The solution: Before caulking, move window screens and any hardware that might get in the way. If your window screen is too tight for you to slide it by hand, there are several ways you can adjust it, so it moves freely when open or closed. For storm windows, move the screen track to the top position if possible. Avoid applying caulk around any of these components since doing so can result in an uneven seal or a poor fit.
Weep Holes Should Be Avoided
The mistake: Caulking around the weep hole.
The solution: Weep holes are openings in your window frame that allow water to escape when the weather is humid or wet, but they also let air into your home. If you caulk over them, you'll trap moisture inside the wall cavity and wind up with moisture damage. Not all windows have weep holes but see if yours do before beginning to avoid filling them.
Pay attention to the interior and exterior of the window
The mistake: Applying the caulk on only one side of the window.
The solution: You need to apply caulk on both sides of the window. It's essential to do this if you notice any drafts coming through your windows, like a door on the other side. Keeping air out can keep your energy bills lower, so don't forget to caulk the interior as well as the exterior.
Use the Appropriate Caulk
The mistake: Using the wrong type of caulk for your window.
The solution: In general, you should be using silicone or urethane caulk rather than latex because they stretch more and don't break down in sunlight. However, this isn't a hard rule. Latex can work if it is specifically designed for outdoors, but you can't use it in a bathroom.
Weather-resistant caulk is even better; it may cost a little more, but the extra few bucks will be worth it for the exterior when you don't have to redo your work. The best caulk for the interior is one that's easy to clean and paintable, so you won't have to worry about it when it comes time to put up new wallpaper or repaint.
In conclusion, following these simple steps will help you apply caulk to your windows with fewer mistakes. If you're interested in homes that are built to deliver lower energy bills, contact Goodwyn Building today! We would love to show you some of our homes and explain why we are the leading builder of energy efficient homes in Alabama!
By Goodwyn Building 11-23-2021