Have you decided to go with wood windows instead of vinyl due to their looks? If so, you'll certainly want to find ways to maintain the look of the windows over the years. You may have heard that wood windows require more maintenance than their vinyl counterparts. Here is what you need to do to prevent wood rot from from occurring.
Fill the Cracks
Any parts of a wood window frame that are exposed have the potential to absorb water. Thankfully, many wooden window frames have been treated using a polyurethane sealer prior to the installation. This will help prevent moisture from making wood rot. However, be aware that cracks that form in your wood windows can expose the wood that is untreated within the crack.
Cracks can develop in wood windows from contraction and expansion that occurs during the different seasons. Depending on the region that you live in, your windows could be more susceptible to cracking.
Your goal should be to fill in cracks within the wood as soon as you notice them. Scrub the crack using a bristle brush, and then fill it using a filler material made out of resin epoxy. This should be enough to stop the crack from being exposed to moisture.
Apply a Sealer
Your wood windows will have been sealed in one of two ways. Natural wood windows will use a waterproof sealant to protect the surface, while the paint used to paint the windows will act as a sealer. No matter how the windows were initially sealed, you'll need to seal them again when the protective layer has worn off.
Start by looking at the caulk used to seal the exterior. If it's hanging off the window, then you'll need to remove the caulk using a razor. With the old caulk removed, you can apply a new bead of caulk in its place.
Next, inspect your windows to see if the sealant is holding up. Paint will be obvious to spot problems with, since there will be patches of paint missing if it is failing. For a clear sealer on natural wood, you'll need to drop some water on the surface to see how it reacts. If the sealant is holding up, the water drop will bead up on the surface. If the sealant needs a new layer, the water will absorb into the wood.
Your window installation company can provide more tips about caring for wood windows.