In today’s industry, manufacturers and designers have found a way to balance air and water infiltration through operable glazing products when exposed to weather conditions. Operable products such as sliding glass doors, single hung windows, casement windows and horizontal rolling windows can’t be 100% hermetic. However, and based on the current construction codes, their expected performance is confirmed through testing under controlled conditions in a certified test facility. This to ensure that any air and water infiltration is kept within the allowed parameters and tolerances. Designers and manufacturers have accomplished this balance by integrating different types of weathering components such as: gaskets, weatherstrippings and pile pads in specific locations or points within the assembly.
Based on experience, when an end-user complains of excessive air and water infiltrating through any of their products, it is very likely a result of either missing or damaged weathering components. In some rare cases, products are performing as intended but customer feels something is not quite right.
In the event that a problem with the glazing product is suspected, the first recommendation is to call an expert to perform an assessment of your products and determine if indeed there is something wrong. In most cases, the products performance can be restored by replacing faulty or missing components with the exact same type of material. Again, the replacement of these parts requires a knowledgeable and experienced contractor that has detailed information of the parts required and how each product shall perform.
Adding excessive sealant or weathering components in the wrong places may actually worsen the condition either by clogging or “sealing” the product too much, preventing it from draining the water within as intended. This may result in water overflowing the track or windowsills causing damage to interior finishes such as flooring and drywall.
Adding and or replacing the weatherstripping with the wrong type of material may also affect the operation of the products. Wrong sized piles may end up either not sealing the products as intended, contributing to more water and air to enter through the product or these can make the operation of the assemblies extremely difficult by increasing friction.
If you are experiencing or suspect your product to be faulty by allowing excessive air and water through these, please contact an expert before attempting self-repairs or hiring unexperienced personnel. At first, hiring unprofessional labor may seem cheaper than an expert but in the long run, having the repairs made by professional, will ensure the longevity and proper performance of the products.