There are several reasons you might want to replace your windows. Maybe your windows are not properly keeping the weather outside and your heating and cooling inside, or perhaps you just want to update the look of your home.
Replacing your windows has many benefits. It can increase the energy efficiency of your home, and also the value of your home. However, to save time and money, there are some things you need to know before you begin.
Energy Star Rated Products
First and foremost, when you are looking for your new windows and insulation products, you will want to look for Energy Star rated products. These products are guaranteed to be more energy-efficient than non-Energy-Star rated products, and will save you money and help prevent energy loss. Not only that, but some Energy Star products can qualify you for a tax credit, so be sure to keep all of your receipts.
Figure Out How Much Needs to Be Replaced
One big decision that you have to make when redoing your windows is whether or not the entire window unit needs to be replaced. If the framing around the window is still structurally sound, you might be able to get away with replacing just the window itself, as well as some of the fixtures, if it has any.
If the framing and sill are rotten or otherwise bad, you are looking at a potentially much more expensive project. A simple window replacement can easily be done by yourself, but if the entire structure surrounding the window needs to be replaced, you might want to consult a professional.
Do Your Research
Where you buy your windows and who you have install them is actually very important. Be sure to do your research before choosing a business to go with. Check with the Better Business Bureau; ask for references as well as any certifications. A good business will have these things readily available to show you, and will answer all of your questions thoroughly and happily.
No matter what kind of windows you buy, even if they are top of the line, if the installation is not done properly it won’t matter.
- Before you even think about ordering parts, make sure you accurately measure your window. Measure every part of it, including the width of the frame, the height and width of the window itself, and jamb to jamb.
- You will also need to use a square (a special tool) and a level to determine the angles of the window sill and other parts of the window. You want your windows to be level and square, not all cock-eyed.
- Look for double or even triple-paned windows. The extra panes mean extra insulation, especially in very hot or cold climates. This can save you money on heating and cooling costs.
- If your windows are up high, you might want to consider tilt-in windows for easier cleaning.
- Find out what the manufacturer warranty is for the windows your buy.
- Strongly consider adding storm windows. Not only do they protect your windows from the elements, but they also add an additional barrier against energy loss.
- Insulation is very important. Make sure you have adequately caulked around the window and frame. Use a silicon-based caulk, not painter’s caulk.
Window replacement may seem like an easy task before it begins, but you will soon learn that it can be a lot more involved than it seems.