What is uPVC?

“uPVC” is short for unplasticized polyvinyl chloride, a type of vinyl. Vinyl itself is made from petroleum and salt, and it’s recyclable.

How will uPVC windows and doors affect my home’s air quality?

Surprisingly, uPVC can actually make indoor air quality better over the long run. How? With its smooth easy-to-clean surface, allergy-causing materials such as dust and pet fur don’t get a chance to become ground in. Plus the surface resists build-up from common household pollutants. Hospitals and other health care institutions often choose uPVC or vinyl for flooring, wallcovering and upholstery fabrics for these exact reasons.

How do I reduce street and traffic noise coming through my windows and patio doors?

There are several ways to reduce noise. First, you’ll want to pick a uPVC window or door with a multichamber profile design. Why? Because air space helps reduce sound transmission, and multichamber profiles have more air space to deaden sound.
Second, look for the best weatherstripping you can afford. By ensuring that doors and windows close properly and prevent air leakage, triple-contact weatherstripping can virtually eliminate outside noise.

What causes condensation?

The source of condensation is humidity or invisible water vapour which is present in all but the driest air. When this water vapour comes in contact with a surface that is below what is called the “dew point temp” the vapour becomes liquid and is called condensation. This process of changing water vapour to liquid occurs on bathroom mirrors and walls after someone takes a hot shower. It also can occur on windows during the winter if the inside air contains enough water vapour.

This condensation can occur at any normal temperature, provided the moisture concentration (relative humidity) is high enough. Water on windows is condensation and can be a problem, and the solution usually doesn’t come from the windows.

Why is there condensation on the inside of my glass?

Condensation occurs when there is excess humidity in your home, especially when it’s cold outside. In actual fact, windows and doors don’t cause condensation, but they can tell you when the humidity level in your home is too high. Signs of condensation include:

  1. Frost on door handles and hinges
  2. Water or ice on windows
  3. Damp spots or mildew on walls and ceilings
  4. Moisture on cold water pipes, walls, and floors

What are the harmful effects of excess moisture or condensation?

If you have condensation on your Heritage or any comparable thermally improved windows, you have a good reason for worry, and good reason to act. The problem is not the windows themselves, but what excess moisture may be doing elsewhere in your home.

  1. It may be freezing in your insulation in your attic where it will melt and damage your plaster exactly like a roof leak when warm weather comes.
  2. Paint peeling or blistering may result from condensation or moisture in your house. Characteristically, the blisters will contain water and the paint peels down to bare wood. Moisture in the room penetrates the wall unit it reaches the underside of the exterior paint. The building materials through which the water vapour has passed are porous; paint is not. As a result, moisture gathers underneath the paint, forms blisters, and eventually the paint peels away from the wood.
  3. Damp spots on ceilings or warm-side surfaces of the exterior walls.
  4. Moisture on basement walls and floors.
  5. Ice and frost on the underside of sheathing boards.
  6. Fungus, mold and mildew growth.
  7. Delamination of plywood materials.
  8. Loss of insulation “r” value in walls and ceilings. Moisture reduces the effectiveness of insulation. It can reduce the insulation value over 50%.

Why are new homes more prone to condensation?

During the first year after construction, it is likely that a house will have more condensation present because of the massive amount of moisture in the building materials used. It will be a drying out period when the wood, plaster, basement floors, walls and paint finishes must dry. When the heating season starts this moisture will gradually flow into the air in the home.

The modern insulation and construction that keeps cold air outside also keeps moisture in. Vapour-seal insulation is designed specifically to stop the escape of water vapour and protect the insulation and your walls from the ravages of water, but at the same time, it adds to the problem of condensation. We are using superior insulating and vapour barrier techniques, along with superior windows and doors, that minimize air filtration and air exchange between the inside and outside, which all adds up to excessive moisture.

This is one reason why humidifiers should not be used at all during the first heating season. In some instances, a dehumidifier should be used to relieve the house of excess moisture content.

How can I reduce the humidity level inside my home?

If you have humidifier, try turning it off or using it less frequently. Another option: open a door or window for ventilation, or install exhaust fans in the kitchen, bathrooms, and laundry room. Awning and casement windows are ideal for kitchens and bathrooms – places that get warm and humid easily.

What should I do about fogging or condensation between the panes of glass?

Panes come factory-sealed, so fogging signals a problem with the seal, not air leakage or humidity. Contact your Heritage Windows and Doors dealer for help.