Compass Home Repair & Improvement Window Replacement by Chuck Horne
Window replacement may seem like a simple project, and if that is your expertise, it is not that difficult. After 25 years of removing old windows and installing new windows, Compass Home Repair and Improvement is an expert in this home improvement project. We are sharing that expertise with you. If, in the reading of the following, you have any questions or comments, or would like more information, please use the “Comments” section below this article or contact us on the link as shown.
Choosing a Window for Installation
THE MANUFACTURER: Before you start this project you need to decide on a window manufacturer. When deciding on a window manufacturer, it’s important to choose one that will still be there in the future. Companies like Marvin or Pella have been around for a long time, but some of the vinyl window companies have folded in the tough economy.
THE QUALITY: Sometimes the house that you currently live in is not the house that you are going to be in one year from now. So why would you sink lots of money into window replacements if you’re not going to be around to realize the energy savings? However, if your windows are leaking air or water, falling apart, have broken seals, or are just plain rotting out, you need to replace them quickly as you are, literally, throwing money out the window! If you are going to be staying in your house more than five years, a higher-end, more efficient window is a better choice. Immediately upon completing your window replacements, the decreased cost of heating and cooling your house should be noticeable. With high quality windows, I’ve heard of as much as a 50% decrease in energy cost just in the first year. Multiply that by five years and your new windows might start paying you!
THE STYLE: There are many different styles of windows to choose from. Casement, awning, slider, double-hung, single-hung, wood on the inside, pull-trudded or extruded aluminum. Why vinyl? Why not vinyl? All these different kinds of windows have their own pros and cons. For example, casement or awning windows are wonderful for catching an elusive breeze on a hot day. Some rooms, such as bedrooms, require a minimum size for egress (i.e. exit in an emergency). In bedrooms you are not allowed to change the type or size of the window unless you first contact your local building department and submit a print showing the original type and size, as well as the new window that you plan. For example, if you have a 4ft. x 4ft. sliding glass window and you want to change to a double hung window of the same size, it might not be allowable (the net opening size could be smaller even though it’s the same size window). All of these factors must be figured into your decision. The internet is a gold mine of information: be willing to spend some time researching.
THE DECISION: Most window companies give purchase incentives such as cash back or free delivery. Your local utility company may offer programs or discounts for certain kinds of windows. Knowing what’s available out there will give you the edge in buying or talking about windows. Do you know what “Low E” is? Will the neighborhood or house I live in be better with vinyl windows or aluminum clad? Sometimes talking to realtors or contractors can give information that’ll help you with your decision.