Building Envelope News

Window Condensation and Leak Issues

Category: Waterproofing
Original date published: 2004-02-06

Windows are the last barrier between outside air and occupants, between cold air and warmer air. Thus, certain circumstances cause moisture to condense on the glass, which can result in leaks in some window assemblies.

There are two types of condensation; one where the condensation is on the surface of the glass. The second type of condensation is where water condenses between dual panes of insulated glass called, Insulated Glass Unit (IGU). Dual pane glass provides insulating function as well as reduces sound transmission and the gap between the two layers of glass is usually filled with an inert gas. The condensation between dual panes of glass is an indication that the seal between the IGU has failed and either water or moisture has entered this space. Most windows come with a ten year warranty for the IGU and this type of failure has historically been included in new construction defect litigation, where buildings are less than ten years old. Most homeowners and other building owners can also call the window manufacturer and assert a warranty claim if the window is less than ten years old.


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