Window replacement can be an important part of home maintenance. As windows deteriorate, energy bills rise, and the comfort and aesthetics of your home can deteriorate, as well. That’s why it is important to know when to get rid of your old windows and have new ones installed. Replacing your windows can boost the overall value of your home, and it will keep your home looking good and feeling comfortable for your family and guests.
When to Replace Your Windows
There are a number of indicators to pay attention to when it comes to monitoring the performance of your windows. There may be multiple reasons to replace the windows in your home, so be sure you keep track of the condition and performance of your windows over time.
First, your windows may simply be outdated. Single-pane glass used to be the most popular type of window, as it is the least expensive. However, double-pane glass is now the standard because of its increased insulation. The same can be said for your window frame material. If it was purchased for its cost, it may not be an efficient option for insulation. Vinyl and other types of low-cost materials can now produce high-quality frames, so an upgrade may make sense.
Alternatively, your windows may be in poor condition. Cracked windows are an obvious sign that you need replacements, but you should also pay attention to the condition of your window frames. Wood frames are the most effective for insulation, but they also deteriorate faster in humid, rainy climates. If the frame is rotting, you are likely losing money on suboptimal energy efficiency.
Researching Window Companies
In selecting the right window company, you may need to do some significant research to find a company that meets all of your window replacement needs, including installation labor.
You may want to start by asking around. Word of mouth seems like a dated method for finding service options, but your friends and family will be able to give you a straightforward review of companies’ overall performance.
In addition, you should check with the Better Business Bureau to ensure that a window company provides ethical, effective service. Many customers are attracted to companies with very low prices, only to find that those prices include insufficient window options and installation support. Make sure you are fully aware of what you are buying before you make a decision.
Choosing the Right Windows
Different people will want to choose different options when it comes time to replace windows in the home.
Location is one important consideration. As stated, some materials perform at a higher level in different climates. Wood is a strong option in dryer areas, but those living in moist climates may seek a more durable material, like aluminum. In addition, the location of the window on the home may determine what type of glass is necessary. A window that does not face the sun, for example, may need less window treatment for insulation.
Budget is another important factor in replacing windows. Triple-pane windows provide the most insulation, but they are also the most expensive (in addition to offering decreased visibility). Fiberglass composite frames are extremely efficient, but they also carry a hefty price tag. You will need to balance your performance expectations with your window replacement budget to select the right option for your home.
In general, you should be able to get a good idea of what type of glass is most effective simply by examining the National Fenestration Rating Council score. This organization rates windows based on efficiency, considering factors like resistance to heat loss and transference of heat from sunlight, so be sure you give each label a close look to assess its overall effectiveness.