Consumers purchasing windows are often concerned about seals, ease of operation, and attractiveness. Even if a window meets these criteria, they are manually operated which means someone must be present to open and close the window. Unfortunately, this is not always the case when storms arise.
A window that can detect rain and close automatically would be an incredible asset to any home. Windows designed in this manner could save homeowners and insurance companies thousands of dollars when laminate flooring, drywall, and other valuable objects become ruined in a storm. Nobody need be present as the window will automatically shut when rain is detected.
The design is very simple and can be adjusted for different window types and locations. A water detector would be mounted on the outside of the window and/or near the window track. Many water detectors are only a few cubic inches in volume and take up minimal space. The blue rectangles in the diagram show the possible locations for a water detection device on an open window. The location is selected based on the window size, overhangs around the window, and typical rain patterns. The detector is then wired to a motor which controls the movement of the window. Again these motors can be manufactured to be very small in size so as not to interfere with the view from the window.
When water is detected, a signal is sent to the motor to slowly close the window. An important safety feature, a safety eye, would be included in the design. This would work much like the safety eye of a garage door and stop the window should an animal or child cross the beam’s path during operation.
The cost to construct this product would be minimal compared to the cost of the window and the cost of damage done to property during a storm. Many water detectors are about $10 to $15. Small electric motors are in a similar price range. Each system would have to be designed and sized for certain sized windows. Once the systems become standard, the cost would decrease further.