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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    1

    Default frost/steam between double hungs and storms

    Live in a 95 year old house with 20+ double hung windows. Some of those on the second floor frost up between the storm and double hung. 'Tis a conundrum that I have not been able to solve.

    The double hungs have had their weights removed and the cavity stuffed, properly, with insulation. Also, have installed aluminum tracks for all windows. Can't replace the frames because SWMBO (she who must be obeyed) likes the curvey glass. C'est la Vie! Both floors' windows have been treated alike.

    Have replaced insulation with styro foam in the affected windows which helped a little but not completely.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    nova scotia, canada
    Posts
    1,522

    Default Re: frost/steam between double hungs and storms

    its condensation forming from air escaping between the sashes and the frame of hte windows... the warm moisture laden air leaves.. and the moisture in the air hits the cold glass and condensates.

    replacing these windows with double pane low e argon windows will solve this
    fire up the saw and make some dust

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    251

    Default Re: frost/steam between double hungs and storms

    Quote Originally Posted by jkirk View Post
    .

    replacing these windows with double pane low e argon windows will solve this
    .... until 15-20 years from now it's seals fail and it does the same thing between it's panes.

    for 1/2- 2/3rds the cost or replacements, you can have the existing windows rebuilt with new seals, reglazed and painted. IF they still were still functional, you could even rebuilt hte weights and pulleys. You'll be set for another 60-80 years before they need ot be completely rebuilt again.

    Since they aren't functional, you could also just caulk them shut... or it you wnt them suitable for egress, you can use rope caulk.


    Another way to look at you problem, is air balance. Your storm window may be sealed too tight. You could enlarge or make sure the weep holes are clear, or even add a couple more holes. Ideally, the prime window is equally o better sealed than the storm window. Otherwise, there not enough cool dry air coming from outside to remove the moisture that escapes between the pane.

    Finally, Low-E storm window will have less condensation since it will increase the surface temp of the glass slightly. Good quality storm windows cost around $90-180 depending on size.


    Something else with replacements. IF installed poorly, they will leak as much as you existing windows and pockets. They are not maintenance free... they in fact cannot me maintained or repaired and are therefore disposable. Sure you don't have to paint them, but some vinyl replacements don't even last as long as a good paint job on a original wood window.

    Another quick and dirt way to seal the window is to just use that adhesive foam to seal around the sashes. The PO of my house did this on about a dozen windows. It's a good stop-gap measure, but no substitute for a proper repair and makes them difficult ot open.


    A well operating original window with weights and pulley is perfectly balanced and easier to open than any modern replacement you can buy. about 5 or 6 of my windows that are in the best condition, can be opened with 1 finger.... but still had a good air seal.
    1925 Two-Story Stucco Beaux Arts Neoclassical

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    The Great White North
    Posts
    4,045

    Default Re: frost/steam between double hungs and storms

    Quote Originally Posted by motoguy128 View Post
    .... until 15-20 years from now it's seals fail and it does the same thing between it's panes.

    for 1/2- 2/3rds the cost or replacements, you can have the existing windows rebuilt with new seals, reglazed and painted. IF they still were still functional, you could even rebuilt hte weights and pulleys. You'll be set for another 60-80 years before they need ot be completely rebuilt again.

    Since they aren't functional, you could also just caulk them shut... or it you wnt them suitable for egress, you can use rope caulk.


    Another way to look at you problem, is air balance. Your storm window may be sealed too tight. You could enlarge or make sure the weep holes are clear, or even add a couple more holes. Ideally, the prime window is equally o better sealed than the storm window. Otherwise, there not enough cool dry air coming from outside to remove the moisture that escapes between the pane.

    Finally, Low-E storm window will have less condensation since it will increase the surface temp of the glass slightly. Good quality storm windows cost around $90-180 depending on size.

    I have to question this.
    If there are weep holes then the inside surface of the glazing will be at the same temperature as the air. In other words -- the storm window is leaky not air tight.
    If that air temperature is cold enough and there is a high enough Relative Humidity ( RH ) --- especially from the warm interior air leaking from the house --- consensation will occur regardless of any low E coating.

    Something else with replacements. IF installed poorly, they will leak as much as you existing windows and pockets. They are not maintenance free... they in fact cannot me maintained or repaired and are therefore disposable. Sure you don't have to paint them, but some vinyl replacements don't even last as long as a good paint job on a original wood window.

    Another quick and dirt way to seal the window is to just use that adhesive foam to seal around the sashes. The PO of my house did this on about a dozen windows. It's a good stop-gap measure, but no substitute for a proper repair and makes them difficult ot open.


    A well operating original window with weights and pulley is perfectly balanced and easier to open than any modern replacement you can buy. about 5 or 6 of my windows that are in the best condition, can be opened with 1 finger.... but still had a good air seal.
    kimt --- I agree with jkirk.
    Your windows and / or frames are leaking warm moist air and condensing ( eventually freezing and turning frosty ) on the cold storm windows.

    If replacing the windows is not an option then rebuilding them properly is your only option.
    You also need to properly seal all the window frames which may require removing the inside trim. Simply stuffing insulation within the weight pocket isn't completely sealing the entire window frame opening on all sides.
    "" an ounce of perception -- a pound of obscure "
    - Rush

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    wisconsin
    Posts
    159

    Default Re: frost/steam between double hungs and storms

    I too am running into this in my house, which is about 20 years old. Some of the windows dont stay up the way they should either. I was thinking about slowly replacing them this coming year.. not looking forward to paying for it though!!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Minneapolis
    Posts
    4

    Question Re: frost/steam between double hungs and storms

    Hi all,

    Total noob here and I apologize if I am piggy backing of another owners post. I am having the same issue on my storm windows, however my Pella windows the the PO installed are a system--not sure if that is the right terminology or what--but they have plastics tracks. All of my upstairs windwos have this frosting on the upper window.


    The lower half does not get iced up much, but then again that has 2 small slats at the base of the window that are completely open to the outside.

    Another note, these windows flip out easily for cleaning and I was thinking about caulking around the window system (I aleady have around the windows themselves) but then it dawned on me that I would have to break that bond if I ever wanted to wash the windows.

    Should this be something to worry about--like I am heating the outdoors?

    Thanks for any insight.

    Dano

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