Tips for Tax-Savvy Homeowners

Although it is only October, it never hurts to be afresh of tax tips and tricks. The Wall Street Journal shares a few tips to keep homeowners off the audit radar.

Enjoy this read, and please share/re-post to any friends or family members who would benefit.

For more home related tips and information, stay posted to our blogspot (

The Main Reasons for Window Failure

This is an amazing article by our manufacture which details IMPORTANT window issues to watch for. Please take a moment to read, as it can save you time, money, and issues in the future.

seal failure damaged brickmould cracked glazing

Why Windows Fail

“Homeowners typically consider replacing windows because they are unsatisfied with their current windows. Understanding why windows fail is essential to choosing the best window and installation type to meet expectations. It can be the difference between being “satisfied” or “absolutely ecstatic” with a window project.

Many older window designs have no weather stripping as we know it today. The air seal was achieved through wood against wood contact or wood against metal contact. Neither would be acceptable by current standards. Today, all windows are tested and receive an air infiltration rating (CFM rate). No operating window has achieved a zero CFM rating. For a homeowner in a climate that experiences subzero temperatures and strong wind, an expectation that NO cold air be detected coming through a window is unrealistic. Contemporary designs use multiple weather strips at each contact point. Double weather strip systems are common place today, although some windows still rely on a single seal. The tightest windows today for air infiltration incorporate triple weather strip designs that put three weather strips on each side of a window. Home owners in colder climates should strongly consider triple weather strip windows and the lowest CFM ratings.

Newer windows with serious air infiltration problems can sometimes be traced to a manufacturing issue, however subpar installation is more commonly the culprit. If daylight can be seen through the weather stripping, a physical adjustment to the window is in order. Often times this adjustment can be very simple once the cause of the gapping is diagnosed. When the air infiltration is coming around the window rather than through the window it is a sign of insufficient insulation and/or sealing of the window. This can be caused by something as simple as an installer forgetting or missing insulation on a window, or just one side of a window (it happens to even the best). Once diagnosed, this is an easy fix.

A common air infiltration issue with a pocket window install can be cold air leaking around the old frame. A new replacement window may be well insulated to the old frame, however if insulation is lacking around the old frame, a cold drafty window opening will still exist. This issue is age related and can be a compelling reason to opt for a full frame install with some older homes.( see: Types of Install).

A more complex issue can be cold air circulating in the wall and finding an entry point to the interior around a window opening where the drywall or plaster meets the studs. This point is well to the inside of where the window is installed and insulated, and not an area typically addressed during a window install. However, once new windows are installed it is a problem that is likely to be blamed on the new windows. One sign of this condition in a home is air infiltration around other wall fixtures, such as electrical outlets on exterior walls. This complication is age related as well, with older homes being at issue.

Insulated glass units with multiple panes can be prone to seal failure. This occurs when the seal keeping outside air from getting between the glass is broken. The “new” air circulating between the glass carries moisture that condenses between the panes. An insulated glass unit with a broken seal can be identified by visual moisture between the glass, or a milky white appearance to the glass. The fix is replacement of the insulated glass unit. Manufacturers Warranties for seal failure vary, but have generally improved with the introduction of more reliable spacer and edge systems for insulated glass. What was once mostly an industry wide 3-5 year standard for seal failure, is now lifetime with some manufacturers.

It is material to mention stress cracks in any discussion of glass. True stress cracks (cracks not associated with any impact) generally appear in the first year or two, and are more common in colder climates. For window companies, stress cracks are often a mystery. They may be almost nonexistent for years, then rear their ugly heads for no apparent reason, only to disappear again for years. Although most manufacturers will cover their products for a period of time regarding stress cracks, it may pay to read the fine print.

Condensation is water vapor in the air being drawn to the coolest surface in a room, usually a window. The amount of condensation that is acceptable in a home is highly subjective. Fortunately, it is also easily controllable. For Homeowners in a colder climate that prefer a higher humidity level, the expectation of NO condensation is unrealistic. To learn more about condensation, acceptable humidity levels in relation to temperature, and steps to reducing condensation…see Window Condensation Facts and Tips.

Some frame degradation can be expected from wood windows in older homes. It is notable how well some wood windows have held up in some 80, 90, and even 100 year old homes. The failure of wood windows in homes less than 20 years old is equally notable. Frame rot is the issue and it makes the old saying: “They sure don’t make ’em like they used to” ring truer than ever. A twenty year old or less window with frame rot, barring excessive humidity problems, has serious design and/or material deficiencies.

Insect infestation can be hazardous to a home, particularly in warmer regions. When unwanted moisture is introduced behind a window frame, insects are almost a guarantee in some areas. Full frame window replacements offer a unique opportunity to inspect the rough opening and treat for infestation before the new window is installed (see types of install).”

To learn more about energy efficient, durable replacement windows contact Weather Tight at 414.459.3888 or request a free estimate online:

Feeling the Love; 2015 Company Picnic

Thank you to everyone who attended the Weather Tight 2015 Company Picnic. This year we had a great time seeing families of our employees and customers that could make it out. Our theme this year was Jaw-some sharks! A good time with good people. Thank you to the Waukesha County Fair staff and all Weather Tight volunteers that made the day enjoyable. A special thanks to all of our loyal customers. You are important to us, and we value the loyalty we have been proud to experience over the years. We extend a heartfelt THANK YOU :) 2015 Waukesha Co Fair-502015 Waukesha Co Fair-492015 Waukesha Co Fair-482015 Waukesha Co Fair-472015 Waukesha Co Fair-452015 Waukesha Co Fair-442015 Waukesha Co Fair-432015 Waukesha Co Fair-422015 Waukesha Co Fair-402015 Waukesha Co Fair-392015 Waukesha Co Fair-382015 Waukesha Co Fair-372015 Waukesha Co Fair-352015 Waukesha Co Fair-342015 Waukesha Co Fair-302015 Waukesha Co Fair-282015 Waukesha Co Fair-272015 Waukesha Co Fair-262015 Waukesha Co Fair-252015 Waukesha Co Fair-322015 Waukesha Co Fair-312015 Waukesha Co Fair-242015 Waukesha Co Fair-232015 Waukesha Co Fair-222015 Waukesha Co Fair-212015 Waukesha Co Fair-202015 Waukesha Co Fair-192015 Waukesha Co Fair-182015 Waukesha Co Fair-172015 Waukesha Co Fair-162015 Waukesha Co Fair-152015 Waukesha Co Fair-142015 Waukesha Co Fair-132015 Waukesha Co Fair-122015 Waukesha Co Fair-112015 Waukesha Co Fair-102015 Waukesha Co Fair-92015 Waukesha Co Fair-82015 Waukesha Co Fair-72015 Waukesha Co Fair-62015 Waukesha Co Fair-52015 Waukesha Co Fair-42015 Waukesha Co Fair-3

Summer Festival Savings from Weather Tight!

Summer is here and Weather Tight is READY! Aside from bringing you superior exterior home remodeling options; we also want to bring you summer fun SAVINGS! Weather Tight is offering online printable coupons for your summer events!

Our first SUMMER SAVINGS opportunity is for the Waukesha County Fair! We have a Senior FREE parking voucher as well as $2 and $5 OFF admission coupons to download.

Check out our website as we add coupons for this fun-filled fair look for coupon links on the homepage. —HAPPY SUMMER EVERYONE!—



Condensation Facts; Understanding Your Windows

As weather heats up, homeowners can notice a difference of temperature inside the home versus outside the home. The changes in temperature and humidity levels affect your home, and can cause condensation on even the newest windows.

This article by our manufacturer  at Restorations Windows® explains the key points in understanding the causes and solutions associated with this common household occurrence.

For more information, contact Weather Tight: phone 414.459.3888 online: 

What Is Condensation?

Is your glass “sweating” – is water beading or ice forming on the inside surface of your windows?  Don’t be too quick to blame the windows! There’s a good chance that what you are seeing is condensation, a sign that there is excess humidity in your home. Humidity – water vapor mixed with air – is drawn to the coolest surfaces, such as your window. Cool air cannot hold as much moisture as warm air, so windows and doors often collect this moisture and make it visible. A surface that is cooler than room temperature is more likely to show condensation.

What Causes Condensation?

Indoor moisture is caused by a variety of factors, including cooking, showering, running dishwashers, storing firewood, pets, fish tanks, plants, clothes dryers that are not vented properly, even breathing. Your new windows are most likely showing condensation more than your old ones because they are more airtight – less air is entering your home from the outside. The air leaking from older windows evaporated the moisture before it could collect.

While some humidity is necessary for health and comfort, chronic and excessive condensation should be tipping you off to take some action before serious, costly damage, such as decay, mold, paint problems, and even major structural damage occur. 

What about condensation in between the panes of glass? This may indicate a seal failure, and you should contact your Sunrise Window dealer, as this is covered by your warranty.

Why is condensation forming at the bottom of the window? Each insulated unit is a sealed atmosphere, and the air in this atmosphere becomes layered, just as in any closed space. Warm air rises, and since humidity is attracted to cooler air, condensation will often show near the bottom of the glass.

Temporary Condensation

There are several ways to tell if the condensation on your windows is temporary.  Does condensation usually form:

  • during baths and showers, cooking, dishwashing, laundry, or other steam producing occasions?
  • during the start of each heating season? Houses absorb moisture during humid summers. This will dry out after a few weeks of heating.
  • during sharp temperature changes? Sudden drops in temperature, especially during the heating season, can create temporary condensation.
  • during new construction or remodeling? Building materials contain a great deal of moisture.  When the heat is turned on, this moisture will flow into the air inside the home. It usually will disappear after the first heating season.

Problem Condensation

Excess moisture in your home may eventually cause problems. It may be time to take action if you notice the following signs in your house:

  • Condensation remains on windows throughout the day, even when the outside temperature has warmed up. 
  • Condensation is forming and running down the walls. It may also be causing discoloration, staining, peeling wallpaper and blistering paint.
  • The air smells musty – this could indicate mold, mildew, or in the worst cases, rot – or odors from everyday household activities that linger too long. Odors increase in intensity with high relative humidity.
  • Mold, mildew, rot and/or decay are visible. Mold and mildew thrive in most areas and can cause health and house damage.

Interior Condensation

Interior condensation forms on the inside pane of the glass within your home. This is the type of condensation most homeowners notice and become concerned about. It usually forms in the winter, especially at the beginning of the heating season. As the outside temperature drops, the inside surface will also get cooler; therefore, condensation will form at lower relative humidity on cold days. The colder the air outside, the more likely condensation is to occur.

You have a great deal of control over interior condensation. See the Reducing Condensation for ways to decrease the occurrence of this kind of condensation.

Exterior Condensation

Conversely, exterior condensation, which forms on the outside pane of the window, typically occurs in the summer. This type of condensation can occur for several reasons: the glass temperature drops below the dew point temperature of the outside air, the air is still, there is a high relative humidity, there is a clear night sky, or there are plants located near your window.

While unsightly, exterior condensation should not concern you since it usually evaporates as the day wears on and will not affect the interior of your home. Since you cannot control the relative humidity outside your home, the only step you can take to combat exterior condensation is to warm the inside surface of the window, as this is a way to warm the outside surface. Seeing exterior condensation on those rare days should be reassurance that your windows are doing their job:  keeping your heating and cooling in your home where it belongs and saving you money.

Condensation & Health

Improper temperature and humidity can cause comfort and health concerns. Warm, humid environments encourage the growth of molds and fungi, which can lead to allergic reactions. Dry environments can irritate sinus linings and can progress to a sinus infection. The best way to combat this is to achieve the appropriate balance of temperature and moisture in your home. See the table below for guidance.

Acceptable Ranges of Temperature & Relative Humidity During Winter (in °F)
The humidity level that should be maintained in your home during the winter varies with the outside temperature. The colder it is outside, the lower the humidity level must be inside your home. All major manufactures of humidifiers list the recommended humidity settings based on outside temperatures. The following guideline is recommended by every major manufacturer of windows and humidifiers.

Outside Temperature Relative Humidity
-20° F 15% or less
-10° F 15% to 20%
0° F 20% to 25%
+10° F 25% to 30%
+20° F 30% to 35%

Climate & Other Factors

Northern and Midwest Regions of the U.S., or those places where the temperature average for January is 35° F or colder, tend to have more occurrences of condensation. The greater the extremes between outdoor and indoor temperatures, the more likely moisture will become visible on your windows.

Bay, bow, and garden windows often create opportunities for condensation to show because air circulation is frequently limited and their protrusion from the insulated house wall generally makes them a few degrees cooler. Heavy window treatments also limit airflow and increase the likelihood of condensation.

Reducing Condensation

Now that you know the what and why of condensation, it’s time to learn how to reduce the conditions that cause it, especially if you are concerned about the effects of that excess moisture on your home and health. 

There are several steps you can take in three main areas:

1. Reduce Moisture Sources

  • Stop or severely limit the use of humidifiers, or adjust them to the appropriate setting.
  • Run a dehumidifier if needed.
  • Limit plants, aquariums, and pets. If you care for a lot of plants, group them in one sunny room and avoid over watering.
  • Have your gas appliances checked, if you have not recently. Malfunctioning gas appliances can deliver excessive water vapor into the air along with more dangerous contaminants. Be sure you have a carbon monoxide alarm.
  • Store firewood outside.
  • Eliminate plumbing leaks.
  • Don’t air-dry clothes indoors.
  • Correct grading and drainage problems around exterior of your home.

2. Increase Ventilation

  • Open windows for a few minutes each day, particularly after steam-producing activities such as showering/bathing, laundry, and cooking. Heat loss will be minimal.
  • Run kitchen, bathroom, and other fans longer and more often.
  • Improve or add a ventilation system in your home through attic, roof and soffit venting. Ensure that everything vents to the outside.
  • Open blinds and drapes. Heavy window coverings restrict the flow of warm air over the interior glass surface.
  • Operate ceiling fans to improve air circulation.

3. Increase Air Temperature

  • Raise the temperature inside the house.
  • Insulate under the seat and over the head of bay, bow, and garden windows to keep window area warmer.
  • Direct warm-air supply ducts toward windows or even use a fan for increased air circulation at windows.

If you continue to have alarming condensation and other moisture problems and you have taken the steps above, it may be beneficial to consult a heating contractor specialist for further cures.

Introducing…Diamond KOTE™ Siding!

diamond kote

Weather Tight has a “new kid” in town; Diamond KOTE™ siding! We have added this phenomenal product to our siding selection, and WHAT a product it is.

Diamond Kote offers a wood option to our customers, with the benefit of superior durability, as it is treated wood with an innovative pre-finish for exterior siding. The color selection is diverse, using natural occurring colorants extracted from raw materials. Natural pigments don’t fade over time, ensuring a fade free home!

The collection offers different architectural styles for a variety of desired affects. Some popular favorites include scalloping, decorative shakes, and even octagonal style!

Diamond Kote is proudly made in the Midwest and uses finishes with low V.O.C. emissions. Environmentally sustainable finishes are a great way to lower our carbon imprint AND keep our pets and family safe and healthy :)

Enjoy some free literature online using Diamond Kote’s e-brochure!

For a free estimate and additional information, contact Weather Tight Phone: 414.459.3888 Web:

SunBlinds® The Blinds You Never Clean!

How many of us enjoy cleaning our mini-blinds? I would venture as to say NONE of us do. The spaces are narrow, the dust settles in and makes itself right at home, attracting all the other dust buds to cling as well in perfect dust harmony. Cleaning them is an arduous, frustrating and repetitive task GRRRR!

Help is on the way! A cleaner, NO maintenance option is available to spare you the mini-blind cleaning blues. Our Restorations® Windows offer an option to have blinds in between panes of glass, for a no dust no muss mini-blind (SunBlinds®). The windows are a quality product in and of themselves, but imagine never having to clean your blinds EVER AGAIN!

The old, yucky way:

the old blinds

The new, AMAZING way:

the new blinds

If you would like to know more about SunBlinds® by our manufacturer, call 414.459.3888, or request online for a FREE no obligation estimate from one of our experts.

It’s “Pretty Season!” Open up Your Viewing Space

Wisconsin is looking green and lush again! Its “pretty season” so why not open up your view with a bay or bow window? Not only are bay/bow windows a great way to increase your viewing area, but it can spruce up the facade of your home (think resale value) and change the whole feel of a room!


Here is a quick break down of the differences between a bay and a bow, for more questions, see the link below :)


bay window

  • Has an “angled” look
  • Generally consists of one large stationary picture window, flanked by two operating casements
  • Contains all the same features as our casement windows
  • Available in various colors, including a stainable wood grain seat board
  • Insulated urethane seat board is available in single and double insulated packages
  • Ice and water shield barriers protect wood from adverse weather and protect the overall integrity of the bay and bow unit
  • Projected window option that creates a box look



bow window

  • Has a “semi-circle” look to it
  • Generally consists of a number of casements—either four, five, or six
  • Casements can come operational or stationary
  • Contains all the same features as our casement windows
  • Available in various colors, including a stainable wood grain seat board
  • Insulated urethane seat board is available in single and double insulated packages
  • Ice and water shield barriers protect wood from adverse weather and protect the overall integrity of the bay and bow unit

Like what you see? Contact us and we can have an expert come out and show you what a new view would look like for your home!

Weather Tight:   Phone – 414.459.3888 or Web –


Spring Cleaning: Make Your Sunrise® Windows & Patio Doors Sparkle

Enjoy this blog post from our window and patio door manufacturer at Sunrise® Windows for tips on cleaning windows and patio doors the correct way :)

“You don’t have to hire a window cleaner to clean your windows. With the right tools, it’s a job that can easily be done yourself. Follow these tips to have your Sunrise® windows and sliding patio doors sparkling in no time at all!

  1. To avoid streaking, wash windows on a cloudy day. Full sun will quickly dry any cleaning solution you use, leaving streaks behind.
  2. Begin by gathering a household glass cleaner, a squeegee, a soft brush, and lint-free cloths or paper towels for cleaning. You can also make your own homemade window cleaner by mixing the following ingredients in a spray bottle: 1 cup rubbing alcohol, 1 cup water and 1 tablespoon white vinegar.
  3. Prior to cleaning the glass, wash window and door frames with the soft brush and a solution of mild dish soap and water. Avoid using harsh, abrasive or petroleum-based cleaners that could cause permanent damage to the frame’s finish. Make sure drainage holes at the bottom of the frames are clean and clear. Rinse with water and wipe dry.
  4. Apply window cleaner to the glass. Starting at the top, pull the squeegee over the pane in an S-pattern. At the end of each stroke, wipe the blade clean with a lint-free cloth. When cleaning windows inside, place a towel on the sill of the window or floor underneath the sliding door to absorb any water runoff.
  5. Wipe up remaining drips with a cloth. Avoid allowing tap water to dry and remain on your glass. Tap water contains hard minerals that, over time, can interfere with the transparency of your glass.
  6. To clean screens, remove them and wash on a clean, flat surface using a soft brush and a solution of mild dish soap and water. Rinse, dry and reinstall.

More about Caring for Sunrise Windows & Patio Doors

Learn how to keep the track system of your Sunrise patio door in optimal condition. Get more tips on caring for Sunrise windows and doors, and stay tuned to our blog for more spring cleaning ideas!

To Schedule an In-Home Estimate

Contact Weather Tight by phone: 414.459.3888 or online:

Don’t Leave Home Without it; Window Shopping Checklist

Spring has sprung, and homeowners are finding it easier to step outside and survey the mischief ‘Old Man Winter’ has caused on our homes over the season. It’s the time of year for renewal in our homes, but it can be overwhelming to choose a place to start.

Window shopping (pun intended) doesn’t have to complicated! Our folks at Sunrise (manufacturer of our Restorations® windows) have made a simple checklist. The check-list is a PERFECT COMPANION to compare, contrast, and make informed decisions for your home.


Print this checklist, and take it along as you hunt for quality windows, and take the confusion out of shopping!

Weather Tight offers FREE in home estimates that will provide you detailed product information for planning and budgeting. Our experts are at your disposal!

For a free, in-home estimate contact Weather Tight:

Phone: 414.459.3888 OR request Online using our form: