Low-E windows are all the rage. Green technology has finally created windows that emit light but keep out heat, brighten the room but prevent fabrics from fading. The downside? They can destroy the vinyl siding on neighboring structures like your garage or even your neighbor's house. Knowing how this happens and what you can do about it can protect your vinyl siding, and potentially protect your neighbor's home.

What are Low-E Windows?

The newest in green technologies and innovations, Low-E windows reflect ultra violet rays and infrared light back to the outside world while allowing visible light passage through the glass into the home. In other words, occupants of the home get all the light, without the heat and damaging UV rays. This all sounds great, except for one problem. 

How Can Windows Melt Vinyl Siding?

It's all very scientific, and actually, no one is totally sure why this occurs. The going theory is that low barometric pressures can cause Low-E windows to bow inward. The curvature of the glass causes light reflecting off of the windows to come together in an intensified beam that can shoot across distances of up to 20 feet and that can cause vinyl siding to melt. It's a rare occurrence that only takes place when the conditions are just right. It happens more between south-facing windows and north-facing siding.

How Can You Prevent This From Occurring?

Perhaps the best solution is to install a screen window outside the Low-E window. Screen windows can break up the light, preventing the laser beam effect. Alternatively, privacy screens with a melting point over 200 degrees Fahrenheit will also work. 

Your Windows Already Melted Your Siding? Get it Replaced!

Unless the damage is very minimal, your vinyl siding should be replaced. Vinyl siding is made up of interlocking pieces specially designed to keep moisture out and let trapped moisture escape. When the siding melts, this system can break down causing moisture to become trapped over the building's envelope, eventually resulting in structural damage. 

Vinyl siding is designed to be easily repairable. Tools for repairing small segments of vinyl siding are available at home improvement centers and hardware stores. However, big jobs like the replacement of a fully melted wall is more than a simple DIY project. In addition, finding the right siding color may be a challenge if the siding is older. For big repairs and replacement, contact an experienced vinyl siding company like Don Snider Roofing