If moisture starts to appear between your thermal pane windows it is generally time to replace the insulated glass unit. More than likely the issue with the foggy windows is a broken seal. Since the basic construction of thermal pane windows is two individual panes with an air gap in between the glass, it is virtually impossible to clean the glass. Hence the need to replace the glass with new insulated glass. This can save thousands of dollars over full unit replacement.
What Causes Moisture to Accumulate in Thermal Pane Windows?
The accumulation of moisture between the panes is due to a seal failure. This can be the result of stresses in the glass from improper installation, transportation damage, or pressure on the windows as your home begins to settle long after construction. While these external forces may cause the seal failure, the damage can be accelerated due to the effects of the weather. The heat of the sun can heat up the air in the gap between the panes and cause a buildup of pressure. This extra pressure can further split the seal creating a crack which allows moisture to enter into the airspace between the two panes. This is not necessarily moisture form the rain, it is more likely the moisture in the air itself, forming small droplets of water.
How do Manufacturers Prevent a Buildup of Moisture?
Many manufacturers of thermal pane windows load the window spacer bar with desiccant pellets. These small beads absorb a small amount of moisture to avoid fogging. As long as you don’t have any leaks in the perimeter seal, the desiccant should last the life of the windows. If you do have a small breach, eventually the desiccant will reach a saturation point and the windows will begin to fog up.
Is there a Temporary Solution to Eliminate Window Fogging?
NO! You have two options. Replace the glass or replace the entire window.