Your Windows and Your Foundation

These 50 degree nights and 70 degree days are meant for enjoying – not just outside, but also inside your home. 

If you’re like us, you enjoy both 1) the fresh air and 2) the naturally available air conditioning (time to give the old HVAC system a rest). Those cool morning breezes bring good feels, when you also realize you’re knocking down that electric bill.  Plus, we’re in Texas, so how many weeks of this type of weather do we get in a year? Maybe four in the spring and four in the fall?

Of course, to fully take advantage of all this beautiful weather, why not open your windows?

When you do, think back to the last time you opened your windows to enjoy the cool, crisp air. Are they just as easy as they were last time? Harder? Impossible?

This may be a clear sign the your home foundation is in need of repair.

Why is This Worth Noting?

Well, a sticking window is more often a symptom of a larger issue. With older, wood-framed windows, it could be something as simple as expansion due to humidity in which the wooden window frames may stick a bit. However, a window that doesn’t open or close smoothly (or at all) can also be a sign of a foundation issue.

How is my Window Affected By My Foundation?

Think about it. When your windows were installed, they were most likely installed as a single unit with the window glass already tracked inside the window frame. This unit was pre-built and inspected to be true (90-degree corners, etc.) and able to operate as intended. That pre-fab window assembly was then fit into a frame courtesy of your homebuilder, surrounded with interior wall material (drywall, insulation, etc.), and external wall material (plywood, moisture/barrier insulation, brick or siding). Post-installation, your builder conducted an inspection to make sure everything was installed correctly and operating well.

So What Changed With Your Windows?

Your foundation is ground-level for all the things mentioned above.  So what happens when that foundation starts to move? Initially, maybe nothing. There could be enough flex/give in your framework to allow some movement. With incremental shifts, you will be fine at first. Over time, those forces start to work against your home’s structure. Once subtle changes begin to multiply, they lead to manifestations of the damage, like your window being forced out-of-square. This means as you open your windows, they might stick and need to be pulled side-to-side as you open or close them. Even worse is going to open your windows and they have simply ceased to function.

Example: Irregular wear-pattern on the tread of your car.

You might look at it and say “hmm, something’s wrong with that tire.” This at first glance is generally true. If you do a further research, you might learn – depending on the pattern – you could be looking at larger issues such as misalignment or a possible broken suspension component.  A sticky/inoperable window is much the same thing when it comes to foundations – indicative of a larger issue than your window doesn’t work.

If you’ve flung open those windows to enjoy this stretch of temperate weather and your windows did exactly what they’re designed to do, congratulations! However, if you’ve noticed that one or more of them are more difficult to operate than before, take a closer look in hopes of addressing a possible foundation issue as the cause of your window woes.

How do I Learn About my Foundation Health?

Accurate diagnosis of a foundation issue is best left to professionals with professional equipment. Perma-Pier Foundation Repair of Texas services Dallas – Fort Worth, Austin, San Antonio, and Houston markets throughout the state of Texas. We provide free evaluations. Schedule your evaluation today so you can 1) get your home back in shape and 2) enjoy this beautiful weather while you can!

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