There are basically three reasons to replace your existing windows. First, is the simplicity of maintenance. All the windows that we install need no painting on the exterior because they are either vinyl or clad (covered) with aluminum and they tilt in for easy cleaning. Secondly, is the energy efficiency and noise reduction. The third reason is the "clarity" (or clearness) of the glass in the new window.
When making the decision to replace your windows, you first need to decide which style of replacement windows to use.
Vinyl is the most common and the least expensive. However, there are limitations on the colors available. You can order white, clay, tan and two woodgrain "decals" that are applied over the white vinyl (if you have pets who could scratch the decal with their claws this option wouldn't be for you).
Fiberglass is a new option for replacement windows. These windows come with several different colors to choose from to clad the exterior with aluminum. The interior comes with an "off" white finish that can be painted to match your interior decor or left unpainted.
Wood replacement windows offer a classic look and are also the most expensive. These windows come with several different colors to choose from to clad the exterior with aluminum. The interior can be either painted or stained to match your interior decor.
There are also different types of replacement windows. There is the "double-hung" type which is the most common where the bottom and top sashes move up and down. There is the "casement" window which usually has a crank handle that opens the window the way a door would swing open. There is also the "awning" window which opens by pushing the bottom of the window out while the top remains in place. Then, there is the "picture" windows which is a fixed window that does not open as well as the bay window and bow window.
You will have to factor into your decision the colors involved in your home, both the exterior and the interior colors. The fiberglass and wood windows offer you the most color options as well as the most hardware options(locks, sash handles, etc.) . All three types of these windows have the same basic energy efficiency with double and triple pane glass available and all tilt in for easy cleaning.
When replacing your existing windows, we usually just remove the sashes and the hardware on the jamb. The sash is the part of the window that slides up and down. The jamb is the sides of the frame of the window. Then, we install a new window with it's own frame inside your old window frame. This will mean that your area of glass will be reduced. So, the style of window must be considered because the vinyl window has the widest (thickest) frame due to the obvious need to use more vinyl to make the frame sturdy. The fiberglass and wood windows do not have as wide (thick) of a frame. Therefore, these two types of windows give you more area of glass than the vinyl.
We do offer the option of a complete tear out of your existing window. However, this will greatly increase your cost and is only recommended if your existing window frame is damaged or rotted.
All our windows are custom-fit, meaning that we measure each one of your windows to get an exact fit to your existing frame. Once the replacement window is put into your old window frame, we install shims as needed to ensure that the new window is plumb and square and then we put a screw thru the jamb on the new windows into the jamb on the old window. The, we put insulation between your new window and the old frame (the window manufacturer recommends a 1/4" inch gap between the new window and the old frame just in case the old frame is out of square) and install the necessary trim to finish off the inside. A special note for older homes with the old rope & pulley with weights window: before installing the new window, we remove the weights and fill the cavity with insulation. This is not always done by contractors because it will add about 1/2 hour to the installation time, but we feel that our method provides far more energy efficiency and greater noise reduction.
After the interior is finished, we move to the exterior and clad (cover) your old frame with the color-coordinated aluminum and then your window has been completely replaced. The average window should take two workers between one and two hours to completely replace.
Call us or click on FREE estimate to set up an appointment to discuss all the options and answer all your questions.