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Stop Ice Buildup on your Windows

You must have encountered ice buildup on your windows. Everyone born and raised through Canadian winters have had such experiences. Ice buildup is extremely common and it happens all around us. Most people still believe that it is something that cannot be avoided and one has to deal with it during the freezing winters, almost akin to living with snow all around. While it is true that ice buildup is an almost unavoidable problem, there are some steps you can take to mitigate it. If you are particularly effective with some of the steps, then you can completely avoid ice buildup on your windows. 


Cause of Ice Buildup on your Windows


It would be futile to discuss the remedies unless we shed light on the actual cause of ice buildup on your windows. There can be many facilitating factors but the cause is essentially the same. It is the natural process of water vapor turning into ice crystals. There will be some amount of water vapor in your room during the colder months. Although winters are chilly and dry, the heated interiors will have some humidity. This humidity could be nominal or substantially high. The water vapor in your room will get drawn towards the window and would get exposed to the freezing temperature outside. As the vapor gets in contact with the colder temperature, it starts to settle on the window. As the temperature outside drops below frost point, the water vapor or humidity undergoes condensation, thereby forming the ice crystals.


stop-ice-buildup-on-windows While water vapor or humidity inside your house and the cold temperature outside are the actual cause of ice buildup on your windows, there are many facilitating factors. It is those factors that you must take care of to stop ice buildup on your windows. It must be noted that damaged, worn out or leaking windows will have a more severe ice buildup because they would fail to insulate the interiors. Also, any house that has a moisture problem will have more ice buildup. It is never wise to ignore ice buildup on windows, even if it seems to be normal. The ice buildup, the subsequent melting in the morning and then reformation of the frost can damage the windows, the walls will be adversely affected by the moisture, there can be mold and mildew, drywalls can get damaged and all components inside a room that are vulnerable to moisture will be at risk.


How to Stop Ice Buildup on your Windows?


The first thing you need to do is ensure your house does not have unnecessarily high relative humidity during the winter months. It is desirable to have some moisture in the air because the interiors can become too dry, thereby rendering your hair frizzy and several things developing static charge, including some of your clothes and your skin. This prompts many homeowners to use humidifiers. These humidifiers are a problem if they are not operated at optimal settings. Excessive humidity inside a room will lead to more severe ice buildup on the windows. The bottom line is that you should maintain less than 40% relative humidity. When temperatures outside hit below -12 degrees, you should have an indoor humidity level of less than 30%. As the mercury dips further, you should reduce your indoor humidity levels to avoid ice buildup.


ice-buildup You should increase the indoor temperature to ensure the water vapor accumulated near the windows remain warm enough to avoid hitting the frost point. The water vapor at the windows will not only be vulnerable to the cold outside but it would also be warmed by the indoor heat. You need to ensure your room is warm enough to prevent the formation of frost. Basically, you must prevent condensation of the vapor. You can also do this by having windows that are much better insulated. Triple pane windows are much more effective at insulation and they would prevent the cold air outside forcing the condensation of the vapor inside.


You should ensure your indoors are adequately ventilated. Do not indulge in any activity that will unnecessarily increase the humidity inside. Using dryers too often, working any appliance inside a room that would contribute to moisture buildup, storing firewood inside, cooking and steaming without adequate ventilation and other activities that involve the use of water should be avoided as much as possible. Windows in some rooms are more vulnerable to ice buildup. Don’t use water and don’t indulge in any activity that would produce vapor or increase moisture in such rooms.


You should have your property inspected to know if there is a moisture problem, if there are any flawed systems including your plumbing that would increase the humidity inside your home without you knowing and if some appliances are malfunctioning, thereby increasing the vapor content in your home. Something as simple as a dripping faucet could be a serious contributor to ice buildup on your windows.

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Google Rating
Sanjay Tamang
3 months ago
Love our new windows and doors. We had all our windows replaced on the main floor, side door and front door, as well as the storm doors. The installation team was great. They removed the existing awning and were really great at cleaning up after the work. There were a couple of issues after the install, but the after sales service team of Alex and Walter were able to resolve it promptly. Great advice from Walter about keeping the humidity inside the house to maintain the windows, and also how to operate them properly. And thanks very much Alex and team for buying the doorbell and installing it for us, as well as fixing the bottom part of the door frames to cover holes on the flooring. Appreciate all your hard work and for going the extra mile. Will definitely recommend your company to friends, neighbors and family.
Thomas Carlyle
a month ago
NorthShield did an excellent job with our house. They were the lowest price our of 4 companies I contacted for quotes. The windows look beautiful, and the molding is very well done. The installation was very quick, they replaced all of the windows in our house in about 4 hours. They cleaned up everything completely afterwards inside and outside, you can't even tell they were here! Very professional, very high quality installation, materials and work. I would highkly recommend them.
Courtney Schappert
3 months ago
Likely a good company for windows, installers seemed competent. However for doors they seemed to have much less experience. My salesman left the company midway through the process and I wasn't informed, and turns out some miscommunication between him and I led to a product I didn't want. The door is nice, just not what I had thought I ordered, and it took about 4 months to get, so I accepted it. The paint also chipped after they left, which leaves a bad feeling (even though that's more of a manufacturer issue than NorthShield issue). I'm not saying these guys are going to be bad for you, but I'm not thrilled with my result. REPLY December 5, 2018: I had called about the paint chip and wrong door options already at the time and was told there was no recourse for me. The paint chip was there when I came home from work after the door was installed, but you provided a picture the installers took before the paint was chipped, so at that time I was told there was no recourse. The wrong options I was told was due to a salesman who took my order having left the company, and there was no paperwork showing my chosen option (no door handle hole to be cut). I will call again tomorrow and update this with the results of that conversation.
Carl To
5 months ago
Alex and the team at north shield were amazing. Great customer service, along with a great team of installers. North shield replaced my 2 front living room windows in 1 day. They even took away my awning! Highly recommended
4 months ago
Very professional workers that despite finding, no vapor barrier and wood rot on our deck, fixed it right and continued to install our very beautiful door and side light without complaint. I would highly recommend Northshield to any friends, neighbors or anyone else. I am a very Happy, Happy Gal with my beautiful new door!
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