Window cracks can quickly escalate into needing replacement windows. While some cracks can be repaired, if the crack gets too big, you’re likely going to have to replace it. As such, you want to do whatever you can in order to prevent this – but can home windows crack from cold weather? The weather isn’t something you can control, so it’s only natural to worry about if windows can crack from cold weather, and if they can, what you can do to prevent this.
Windows can indeed crack from cold weather. This is most often the case if you have an old or single-pane window. There are three different ways home windows can crack from cold weather: thermal stress, impact, and pressure.
- Thermal stress cracks are probably what you’re thinking about when you’re worried about the cold and your windows. These occur most often in large windows when the temperature is different across the window. They can also occur if part of the window is in shade and part is not. The temperature differences cause the glass to expand by different amounts, and ergo, crack.
- Impact breaks are when your window cracks from something hitting it, like a snowball with ice or rocks in the middle or when a storm throws a broken tree branch against your window. Technically, the cold itself isn’t to blame for this type of crack.
- Pressure cracks are caused by changes in barometric pressure – aka, the air pressure in the atmosphere. Rapid, extreme changes can cause windows to crack. If your window sustains this type of crack, you likely need to have the frame replaced in addition to the window panes.
Impact breaks aren’t exactly something that you can control, aside from telling people to ensure that they take their snowball fights somewhere away from the house. As such, when people worry about if home windows can crack from cold weather, they’re usually the most concerned about thermal stress cracks and pressure cracks.
How To Identify The Type Of Crack On Your Window
Depending on how your window cracked, it may mean different things for replacement and repair. As such, it’s good to know how to identify each type of crack.
- Thermal stress cracks are usually perpendicular to the glass edge at the start, but then they can splinter off into other directions.
- Impact breaks cause starburst cracks, with the worst of the damage in the middle where the object made impact and then extending outwards.
- Pressure cracks usually curve like an hourglass.
If you’re not sure what type of crack you have, when you contact a window professional for broken glass repair, they’ll be able to identify it for you. Depending on the crack, they may be able to repair the glass. If you end up needing window replacement or both new windows and new frames, they’ll tell you. They will also be able to provide you with advice on how to prevent cracks in the future.
How To Keep Your Home Windows From Cracking In The Cold
Windows cracking in the cold is a more common issue in older windows or single-pane windows and less of one in newer windows with double- or triple-panes. Still, it’s important to know what, if anything, can be done to prevent cracks from cold weather. Windows are a crucial component of your home – and they’re also very expensive, so you want to do what you can to help them last as long as possible.
As a general rule, you want to ensure that your windows and their frames don’t have any existing cracks or damage, as this makes it much easier for them to crack from cold weather.
Preventing Thermal Stress Cracks
These are caused by extreme fluctuations in temperature and differences in temperature across your windows. Since they occur from the natural expansion and contraction process of glass, there’s not too much you can do to prevent them. But you can work to even out the sun exposure on your windows. The thicker your glass, the more resilient it is, which also helps to prevent cracking.
Preventing Impact Breaks
When it comes to snowball fights, your best bet here is to remind people to keep the snowballs away from the house. When it comes to broken branches and the like, you can keep your trees trimmed. If any trees look dead, you can have them removed to prevent them from falling on your house.
Preventing Pressure Cracks
This type of crack isn’t very common. You can work to keep your frames in good condition along with your windows and consult with your local window professionals for advice on how to prevent pressure cracks, if that is something that you need to worry about.
Professional Broken Glass Repair And Replacement Windows
Peak Windows provides professional broken glass repair and replacement window services throughout Northern Utah. We can advise you on ways you can protect your home windows from cracking in the cold, as well as repair any cracks, either through repairing the glass itself or through replacing the windows. Contact us today to learn more about our services.