Foggy windows a sign of excessive humidity, broken seal

Are foggy windows in the home a harbinger of future energy concerns or a sign that the windows are doing their job keeping heat inside? It could be either, depending on a variety of factors, but it may take a home inspection to determine whether repairs need to be made in order to maintain an energy-efficient home.

Moisture exists everywhere in the home, particular in bathroom and kitchens. Even breathing produces air that is humid. If homeowners start to notice that moisture is condensing on windows, it could be a sign that the home is too humid. After all, if water is collecting on windows, it is also collecting on walls, where mold spores could start to grow.

Still, the presence of moisture on windows does prove that the warm air that needs to be trapped inside the home during the winter is not escaping.

Moisture forms on glass when the warm air from the home comes into direct contact with cold air from outside. Secure, double-pane windows are unlikely to experience this event because there is a barrier of temperate air between the two panes. If moisture collects between them, you may have a serious leak.

"If you see moisture, fogging or cloudiness between the panes of glass in your window, this indicates that the seal of your window has failed and it's time to get a new window," Christopher Burk, a window expert in Ohio, told The Philadelphia Inquirer. "Failed seals lack the energy efficiency and features necessary to help you keep energy bills low and enjoy comfortable living in your home."

A Washington, D.C. home inspection service can help any homeowners in the Tri-State area who have concerns about leaky windows. They can identify potential problem spots, seal windows and prevent heat from being lost during the winter months.