DUAL PANE WINDOW GLASS REPAIRWritten by John Rocco
DUAL PANE WINDOW GLASS REPAIR
For past few weeks, I have been explaining how to repair a broken window pane in your home. But, what if you have dual pane windows? Is process same? Well, pretty much, except for a couple of variations. So, let's review single pane repair process, and I will point out differences regarding dual pane windows.
When we start talking about dual pane windows, one of first things that comes to mind is vinyl window frames instead of aluminum. When dealing with dual pane windows, you can have either aluminum or vinyl frames, depending on year house was built. Dual pane glass got popular in 1980's, but vinyl frames didn't really catch on until 1990's. So, if your house is less than 10 years old, chances are you have vinyl framed windows. In either case, I will discuss differences. Let's say you have a sliding aluminum frame window with dual pane glass. The procedure for removing frame from opening and glass from sash is same as with single pane windows. The differences are, first, glass goes into frame about twice as far as single pane window. The single pane window glass went 1/4" into surrounding rubber. The dual pane usually goes 1/2" into rubber. So, if both pieces of glass have been broken, you are going to have to order a new IGU (Insulated Glass Unit) from local glass shop. They are going to want to know width, height, overall thickness, and possibly individual glass thickness. The best way to get dimensions is to measure width and height from rubber to rubber, write those numbers down. Then, remove panel from opening and place it on a table like we did with single pane window. Remove screws from opposite corners and pull of frame. You will be able to see how far glass goes into surrounding rubber. If it's 1/2", then you want to add 1" to width and height that you measured previously (1/2" times two sides= 1"). Then, measure overall thickness of unit by removing rubber from glass edge. Typically, this dimension is 1/2", but not always. There is a metal spacer that divides two panes of glass. Make a note of color so you can request same color in new IGU. It's either going to be silver or bronze. If you want to get same size spacer, you need to give glass shop thickness of each piece of glass in IGU. If old unit has 1/8" glass on both sides, and overall thickness of unit is 1/2", then they will use a 1/4" spacer. If glass is 3/32" on both sides, they will use a 5/16" spacer. If you don't care about matching spacer thickness, you can request thicker 1/8" glass, and they will automatically use a 1/4" spacer.
When you get new IGU home, installation is same as single pane window. Now, what if only one side of IGU has been broken? Many times outer pane will break, but inside pane is fine. You can order a whole new IGU like we just did, or, if you're adventurous type, you can order only single pane of glass that was broken and replace it. I'm going to explain how to do it, then i'm going to tell you things that can go wrong. After you have window pane on table with surrounding frame removed, you will see a black rubber type substance around edge where spacer is applied. This is a butyl sealant, and you have to separate broken glass from this butyl. The best way to do it is to take a utility knife with a new blade and break through butyl where it meets broken glass. Then, take a new hacksaw blade, and push it into area where you sparated butyl from glass. You don't want hacksaw blade to be attached to a hacksaw. Using your hand, saw back and forth as you work your way around edge of glass. This should allow you to remove glass. Once that's done, lay rags on top of good piece of glass to catch any debris, and scrape surface of spacer that will be contacting new glass. Use a putty knife. Then, remove rags and debris. When you are ready to put new glass on, clean inside of good piece of glass that you didn't remove. Remember, once you install new glass, any debris or finger marks on inside will be permanently sealed. So, clean it real good and check it from all angles. Do same to side of new glass that will be going to inside of IGU. Then, run a thin bead of clear silicone around entire perimeter of spacer. Set your new glass on spacer and use finger pressure to adhere glass to silicone all way around.Then, come in from side, and run silicone around side where glass and spacer meet. Cover window opening with something for 24 hours. You do not want to touch IGU for 24 hours. The silicone needs to cure. After 24 hours, you can assemble unit and install it back into opening.
At Last - Barefoot Comfort All Year LongWritten by Faith Williams
Ever wonder what it would feel like to walk barefoot in your house all year long and be comfortable? Electric radiant floor warming systems answer that question. Electric radiant floor warming uses a thin mesh mat with a heating element woven throughout to heat open floor areas. Rooms such as baths and kitchens are popular places people like to have extra warmth, but don’t forget foyer, mudroom, laundry room – or just about any room in house! Using radiant heat, heat stored in floor is similar to heat provided by a radiator. The heated floor radiates heat to people and objects in room. The flooring surface is maintained at a comfortable, yet higher temperature than ambient temperature of floor before heat was turned on. Since heat is conducted and radiated from floor level up, it helps to provide a warm and comfortable environment for occupants of room, unlike forced air, which tends to concentrate most of warm air near ceiling level. It provides even, uniform heat throughout room, without visibility of heaters or losing floor space to heating units. For installation, subfloor should be clear of debris and sharp edges or objects that might damage element. Loose boards should be repaired and all gaps filled in to assure mat will be installed over a smooth and even surface. John O’Brien, Director of Sales and Marketing for Radiant Floor Warming, a company providing electric radiant systems, says, “ Our mat is only 1/8” thick – ideal for ceramic tile and stone since it will not add to finished floor height. Our material is fully covered by thinset or underlayment used in tile installation.” The ceramic tile or stone is then installed according manufacturers’ and industry standards. Renovations as well as new construction can benefit from electric radiant heating. Unlike a hydronic system that needs a boiler to heat water and flexible piping throughout heated area, electric radiant heating can be done in small open areas with “spot heating” mats designed just for that area. Consideration of permanent fixtures and furniture plays an important role since electric radiant heat is not recommended under these areas. The heat needs to dissipate and if there is a fixture flush with floor, heat has nowhere to escape. And besides, who wants to pay for heat you can’t feel?