Can Window Leaks Affect a Building Envelope?
The building envelope of your home protects the inside from the elements, including thermal changes and water. When the envelope fails it allows moisture leaks and heating leaks to appear, causing increase of costs through reduced energy efficiency and potential for extensive repairs that may come with these issues.
While issues with the building envelope can come from a number of different sources, one very common issue that can affect the building envelope is leaks from windows. Moisture leaks from windows can be a big problem as moisture can quickly negatively affect the entire building. If there is a moisture leak into a building, the windows should be one of the first places that you should look to find the source.
When locating the source of a moisture leak it is important to keep these tips in mind:
- Find the source of the leak. This is usually in a transition between materials in the building envelope – such as at a window.
- Address any thermal leaks. Sometimes there is not an obvious hole that is allowing moisture in. Finding the source of a thermal leak may lead you to where the moisture is also entering the building.
With a building envelope, any source of moisture can greatly affect the entire building – and quite quickly. Addressing a leaking window immediately will help to avoid larger issues with the building down the road, and avoid costly repairs to the building, as well as avoid costly thermal leaks which are likely to happen in conjunction with the moisture leak.