Wood rot is one of the top reasons homeowners seek to replace their windows. It is an extremely common problem that we at Kelly Window and Door address for our clients on a daily basis. This rot occurs in many homes, especially those built in the 90s and before, that came with windows featuring wood on the exterior. When these homeowners discover wood rot, they have reason to be concerned! The rot is, of course, an aesthetic issue that can make a home appear unsightly, but the problem can go much deeper than that.
How does wood rot happen?
Windows with exteriors made from wood material are very vulnerable to the outside elements. If the wood is not painted frequently enough and maintained regularly, moisture can easily collect inside it. If the window’s caulking has a gap, this can also allow water to leak in. Water can infiltrate and get behind the wood and rot it from the backside as well – there are many ways that water could get into all the places it shouldn’t be.
What problems can wood rot cause?
Once the moisture has entered the wood and the rotting process begins, the wood will quickly deteriorate. For one thing, wood holding that much moisture can create mold or mildew, an unsightly and unhealthy occurrence that no one wants in their home. In addition, if left untreated, the deterioration could spread and get into the framing of the house, becoming a structural issue. It is very helpful for the rot to be addressed while it is contained in one area still.
How does Kelly Window and Door address wood rot?
If wood rot is just in the window frame, we can take care of the rot when we replace a client’s windows before it spreads and causes further problems. We always replace the window sashes and tracks, but there are a couple of different ways we can approach the framing of the window, depending on the client’s preference.
- 1. One option is to entirely replace the wooden window frame.
This is a very popular choice currently, as it gives total peace of mind that all wood has been removed and there is no chance of window rot later on for any reason. We replace the existing brick mold and sill with our durable and waterproof PVC trim. Our high-quality sealant is also carefully applied to ensure that water has no opportunity to seep in through the window frame. The new windows and framing are virtually maintenance-free, besides cleaning and occasionally checking that the sealant is still completely intact.
2. An alternative and lower cost option we offer is applying cladding to the existing window frame. First, if any wood rot already exists, we remove the rotted sections and replace it with new wood. We then clad over top of the wood brick mold and sill with aluminum cladding custom-formed to fit each window. This ties the new replacement window and the existing window frame together and forms a barrier against water infiltration. A sealant is also applied to protect against air leaks or water leakage. Although the window frame still contains wood at its core, the work we do protects it from typical factors that lead to wood rot.
Either of these methods can be very effective at addressing wood rot and preventing these issues for the future. Kelly Window and Door always provide a free consultation, either at your home or in our showroom, to discuss each client’s needs and the best solutions for their home before moving forward. To learn more about what we can do for your home, give us a call at 919-461-0010. We would love to serve you!