Almost seven million property crimes took place in the United States in 2019. The majority of these crimes were larceny-theft, accounting for almost three-quarters of cases. Burglary cases weren’t as common, but they still accounted for 16.1% of cases.
Your chances of becoming a victim of such property crimes can go up if you have defective windows. For example, a burglar can exploit a large crack in window panes by taping the area and applying pressure to it. The tape can help dampen the sound of glass breakage and also hold the shards together.
That alone is enough reason for you to feel concerned about glass pane cracks. However, these damages can also give rise to other hazards and unnecessary costs.
To that end, we came up with this guide on when window cracks pose safety, security, and comfort problems. Read on to discover the situations that warrant immediate window repairs.
There’s a Visible Hole in the Damaged Window
Window cracks that occur due to impact breaks may develop holes on the site of the impact itself. Impact breaks, in turn, result from solid objects hitting panes with significant force. A stray baseball or golf ball or a rock propelled by a lawnmower are typical culprits.
In many cases, impact breaks leave a circular dent with a starburst pattern on the glass. The middle round-shaped area, being the point of impact, is where you may find actual holes. However, the “legs” of the stars may also be big and deep enough to have developed gaps.
If you’re dealing with an impact-type residential window crack, it’s vital to get it fixed ASAP. For starters, any additional pressure placed on the window, such as a strong wind, can make it implode. When that happens, it can result in a shower of glass shards, which can cause severe injuries.
Keep in mind that glass can easily leave the skin with a cut or laceration (a cut with a torn or jagged wound). So much so that it causes many of the 7 to 9 million lacerations treated by US emergency departments each year.
It’s your safety and that of your loved ones on the line, so don’t delay hiring a window repair specialist. The repair pro may replace the pane depending on how big the break is and its number of legs.
You Feel a Draft from the Window Crack
Window glass stress breaks in their earliest stages can take the form of tiny window cracks. Stress cracks often result from temperature differences between indoor and outdoor air. For example, they can occur if you always have your air conditioner on full blast during hot days.
While stress cracks start small, they often deepen as they grow and spread. Cracks that get deep enough can reach the other side of the window, creating a gap. That space can then become wide enough to allow more outdoor air to enter the glass.
Now, keep in mind that windows already account for about one-third of heat losses in the winter. As such, the addition of cracks that let air seep in and out can contribute to a higher energy loss rate.
Not only can that affect your comfort, but it can also make your energy bills skyrocket. You can check out this guide to find out more about how damaged windows can raise your utility bills.
Also, keep in mind that unaddressed stress cracks can destabilize the glass pane. That’s because, as mentioned above, they can spread by branching out across the window. The more cracks and the bigger they are, the likelier it is for the glass to burst and cause injuries.
For those reasons, it’s best to get a repair technician to inspect your cracked window right away. If you call while the breaks are still small, the tech may still be able to repair them with resin. If done right, the resin will fill in the gaps and create an effective seal.
The Crack Is on a Multi-Paned Window
In 2020, the global double-paned windows market had an estimated size of $21.4 billion. That makes them some of the most common types of windows in buildings. In fact, they’re now the standard in most new homes in the United States.
The main reason for these windows’ popularity is their high energy-efficiency rating. That’s because their double panes make them more efficient than single-pane windows. On the other hand, triple-paned windows can be twice as efficient as the double pane ones.
However, the extra layers of glass aren’t the only efficient materials in such windows. Their efficiency has more to do with the insulating gas sandwiched between the panes. Argon and krypton, in turn, are the most common types of gas used to insulate windows.
Either way, if the insulating gases exit the windows, the windows will see a drop in their efficiency.
Granted, failed window seals and saturated desiccants are common culprits behind that issue. However, insulating gases can also leave windows through cracks in the glass pane. The bigger and deeper the crack, the more gas it expels and the less efficient the window can get.
That’s why it’s imperative to get cracks checked as soon as you see them on a multi-paned window. This way, the repair expert has a higher chance of repairing the crack and resealing the window. The pro may also refill the pane with insulating gas if too much of it has already seeped out the window.
Don’t Delay Repairs for Even the Smallest Crack in Window Glass
Always remember that the longer you put off repairing a crack in window glass, the longer and deeper it can get. From there, that single crack can branch out and destabilize the entire pane. This is far more costly to repair, unsafe, and can be a welcome sight for criminals.
So, as early as today, get in touch with a window repair expert to inspect, fix, or replace your cracked windows.
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