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Add Argon and Foam to old vinyl windows????


Jason Rogers's Avatar
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10-27-12, 09:09 AM   #1  
Add Argon and Foam to old vinyl windows????

I had what some may call an epiphany and others might just call me stupid. So.... can you drill out the frame on a vinyl window to use low expanding foam to foam fill a vinyl window frame? Now on the same line of thinking why not drill a hole in the glass pack fill it with argon and then re seal it???

What do you think?

 
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stickshift's Avatar
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10-27-12, 09:39 AM   #2  
Doesn't work that way - you have to evacuate all of the air and then add the argon, plus plug the hole before the argon escapes. Decent idea but you're not the first to have it and it doesn't work out well.

 
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10-27-12, 09:45 AM   #3  
The next problem......WalMart doesn't carry Argon.

 
Jason Rogers's Avatar
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10-27-12, 10:12 AM   #4  
Im not so sure you have to vacuum the air out? Correct me if im wrong. Argon is denser than air and will settle from the bottom up in the glass pack as you fill it, now the air would have to escape as you fill the pack with argon but inserting a screw back into the aluminum spacer where you drilled for the air to escape and where you needed to add argon with a proper sealant around it should do it?

 
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10-27-12, 10:37 AM   #5  
The atmosphere needs to be nearly 100% argon. If you allow air to remain in the window, it will fog up. The physical weight of argon only allows for a very slow transition of air-to-argon atmosphere. Vacuuming it all through is more effective. That is to say.....it is doubtful it will happen.

 
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10-27-12, 11:07 AM   #6  
If a window insulated glass unit (IGU) isn't leaking, why would you mess with it for the minimal amount of benefit that an inert gas gives? All the work involved of removing the IGU from the frame...or at least exposing the spacer, the cost of the gas, the parts required to inject the gas, etc..would make this a non-cost efficient endeavor.

When IGUs are made, a small amount of desiccant is also inserted in the unit during final assembly. If this is not done, any moisture remaining between the panes will evaporate and re-condense during temp changes and fog the window. There will always be moisture even with tech grade argon which would be hard to buy anyway.

I've seen these IGUs made....it's not a DIY project.


The foam in the frame would entirely depend on the construction. You might have to drill 3-4 holes per member to get complete fill. And all those plugs would remain visible. Check out the insulation value of adding the foam vs the dead air space that already exists and see if it's worth the effort.


Vic
"I sometimes wonder how some people ever made it to adulthood..."

 
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10-27-12, 07:11 PM   #7  
I can't begin to tell you how impractical that idea is. Remove the IGU in order to reinstall an old used IGU that you just voided the warranty on? Try it if u want... its ur house! Just hope you don't break even one or fail to seal the 2 holes you drill properly just to gain a few fractions of r-value (more correctly, u-value)!

And you do realize that if you look at a cross section of vinyl windows frames that they have multiple compartments in both the masterframe and the sash frames, right? Most vinyl companies don't have foam filled frames because they have deemed the benefits are negligible... and the ones that do it is mostly used as a sales pitch. (OUR windows have foam filled frames!) well la-dee-da.

 
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10-28-12, 04:11 AM   #8  
XSleeper and Gunguy45 have it right..............take their advice and leave well enough alone.

 
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