DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum > DIY Home Improvement > Windows and Doors > condensation in sliding glass door




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Old 05-16-2006, 04:54 AM  
Oberon
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Default window seals

In the "good old days", IG (Insulating Glass) seals were made of things like polysulfides or hot melt butyl, or a couple of other products, including silicone in some cases. These were made primarily using a single seal system and the one thing they all had in common was eventual seal failure.

Manufacturers looked for better ways to make IG seals and they came upwith a number of innovations to prolong seal life. The first was using a dual-seal system rather than a single-seal system.

Basically, dual-seal means using two different materials to bond the spacer to the glass. One part of the seal is the moisture or vapor barrier - or the primary seal - and the other is the structural or secondary seal.

The best primary seal in use today is polyisobutylene or PIB. This is the only butyl known that is 100% impermeable to gas and moisture. Unfortunately, PIB has no structural strength and if used alone in the IG unit the glass wouldn't stay attached to the spacer very long. So the secondary or structural seal is usually silicone.

Gas and moisture passes quite readily thru silicone, but because of the PIB primary seal the unit remains tightly sealed - when applied correctly. This is the system used in the better metal-spacer systems. If using a metal system the best material to use is stainless steel. Aluminum is still available, but it is being phased out (if not totally gone) by most manufacturers.

There are maybe a dozen or so different methods currently used to seal IG windows. Some are better than others. Some have no metal component at all such as SuperSpacer and TPS. Others are a combination of metallic and non-metallic ingredients such as Swiggle. I won't get into the details because quite frankly it can become technical and boring rather quickly! Suffice it to say that when using one of the better sytems today seal failure has become very uncommon. If the manufacturer is using one of the
not-so-much-better systems, then seal failure can still be an issue.



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Old 05-16-2006, 07:53 AM  
woodworkingmenace
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Ok, so what do you ask for, in a door like that?

Do you think the seller will know what type of system that they used? Or, are they just "Home Depot" type sellers that dont know too much of anything?

Also, I like those windows that are almost bullet proof!

(My brother got windows, cost about 2 grand a window and you can drop a 12 pound bowling ball on them from a certain height, and they are guaranteed NOT TO BREAK!)...

He lives in Pontiac Michigan, so, I dont know if that Company is just exclusive to that area or not...

Now THAT would be the type of window to get in my opinion... He also got his sliding glass door made from the same stuff!

Jesse



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Old 05-21-2006, 06:05 AM  
Oberon
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There are really two ways that a window manufacturer gets an IGU (insulating glass unit - the glass with the spacer between the lites) - first build it himself, second buy it from an IG manufacturing company.

The majority of window manufacturers make their own IGU's....but, the majority of the bigger companies buy their IGU systems from an outside source....

Basically, if a person buys a window or door from one of the major wood window manufacturers, then the spacer system used in those windows and doors comes from the same source in the majority of cases.

If a person buys a vinyl window, then there is more of a chance that the window manufacturer made the IGU...but some of the larger vinyl manufacturers are starting to switch over to buying their IGU's (at least some of them) from the same source as the wood guys get theirs.

Smaller companies generally make their own IGU's because it is cheaper for them to do so. These are much simpler systems and they tend to reflect that in longevity.

I suspect that your brother's windows may be simple tempered glass. Although I have never heard of dropping a bowling ball onto the glass to test it, there is an ANSI and CPSC test requirement that drops a bag filled with 100#'s of lead shot onto the glass from a height of four feet.

This test is used with both laminated and tempered product and often - if the glass is thick enough - tempered glass doesn't break at impact.

Thick tempered glass should be able to handle the bowling ball with little problem - depending on the drop height of course.

Tempered glass isn't generally used in bullet resistant applications, however. In those cases laminated glass is used in various thicknesses and make-ups...

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Old 05-22-2006, 07:26 PM  
WalterSobcheck
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For the life of me I can't find the name of the manufacturer anywhere on the door. It makes me think it was some "lowest bidder" type company who supplied them to all 101 houses in our subdivision. But it was my fault all the way. I was trying to spray out the track with the pressure washer while it was partly closed, so I am sure I tagged the seal. Anyway, I'll probably just get with a local door or glass company, get an estimate, and give the buyer a door allowance if they want it. I'm too tired from fixing up everything else in the house to add even one more thing to the list. Thanks for the help though. I'll be needing it again in another forum about doing millwork with rounded corners, so if anyone cares to opine I'll be twice as grateful.

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Old 05-22-2006, 09:01 PM  
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Default More Ideas

I had an idea from your post. If you live in a subdivision and all these homes have the same windows.....you know where I'm going....check with others in your community to get a discounted rate at a glass company.Shop around because I have seen this work. Friends of mine put in a driveway with their 4 neighbors and everyone received discounts.
Worth a try.

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Old 07-08-2006, 09:55 AM  
defogger
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What happened is that the integrity of the seal has been compromised and allowed moisture to enter into the cavity. The moisture was already there in the vapor state and when the cold water from the pressure washer hit the glass it cooled the glass down and the vapour condensed. This problem is now repairable and there are dealers across North America. To find a dealer go to www.ccwwi.com.

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Old 07-08-2006, 01:57 PM  
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Hello Walter:
Insulating glass is made by sealing 2 panes of glass to (usually) an aluminum frame with an organic caulk. I have taken windows apart, cleaned the glass inside and out, warmed it in the hot sun and stuck it back together with silicone caluk. As the glass cools the air inside shrinks and makes a tight seal. I have noticed that extreme temperature differences on each side will cause a leak almost every time (one glass shrinks while the other expands). Your power sparyer water may have been too cool; shrinking the outside glass and breaking the seal. Square eye is correct; take it to a glass company and let them reseal it. By the way--Andersen has a 20 year warranty on their glass which they will honor through one of their authorized dealers; Home Depot is one of them. To my knowledge, Andersen invented the double pane window with welded glass. No aluminum or sealer between, just welded glass; I've never seen one of them leak.
Glenn

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Old 08-05-2006, 09:51 PM  
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Default Check it out...

WWW.ccwwi.com

I have never heard of it ...but it all makes sense.

Anyone else ever seen this work?


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