Home Improvement 101: Everything You Need to Know About Window Replacement
If one or more of the windows of your home is drafty, outdated, dangerous, or causing a spike in your monthly utility bills—it’s likely that window replacement is in order. While a brand-new, quality window replacement can do wonders to improve the comfort, style, and value of your home, thinking about getting started can make many homeowners feel uneasy. This is usually because windows aren’t cheap, and a shoddy product or installation can wind up costing you more in the long run. On the other hand, high-quality windows that are properly installed can last for decades while offering myriad benefits to improve your home.
Choosing the right window products that will provide a great return over the long run takes some research, the help, and support of a great window installation company, and continued dedication to your home now and into the future. Whether you’re interested in the most advanced insulation technology in the world or focused more on beautiful craftsmanship and design, Texas Remodel Team is here to help.
At Texas Remodel Team, we’ve been the most trusted remodeling company in the state of Texas for over 25 years—and are glad to help you get on the right track towards a successful window replacement. In this guide, you’ll learn everything you need to know about new windows—including how to plan a stress-free, affordable window replacement project of your own.
Are New Windows Expensive?
As with most home improvement projects, window replacement can get quite pricey. However, finding cheap windows isn’t impossible—in fact, single-pane windows can cost just $100 or less, and that can even include installation in some cases. However, when it comes to your home, going for the cheapest options isn’t always in your best interests.
While they’re still sold today, single-pane windows are a thing of the past—outdated by the latest, most high-tech features and superior designs. Replacing your home’s windows with single-pane products is bound to save you money upfront. However, cheap windows won’t insulate your home as well as higher-quality products will. They also tend to break, crack, or sustain other damages more easily and will likely need to be repaired or replaced far more often than a tougher and more durable product.
In other words, investing in quality windows and a professional installation will save you money over the long run. Depending on the size, the brand, and other factors, a good quality window can cost between $300-600, to around $800-1000 or more for custom replacement windows. At the same time, higher quality windows will improve your home with excellent energy-efficiency performance, will offer greater protection and security, and enhance the aesthetic value of your home. Best of all, higher quality windows will help your home to appraise higher if you ever decide to sell, while cheap windows are likely to detract from the value.
The Many Benefits of Window Replacement
The main benefit of a window replacement is the opportunity to upgrade your existing windows with superior products. Depending on your goals for window replacement, the type of window model you choose, the quality of the product, and the level of installation will all factor into the benefits you’ll enjoy from your new window replacement.
In general, today’s newest window products and installation methods are better than ever before, and the benefits that come from window replacement are many. Here are some of the most notable ways that high-quality window replacement can improve the functionality, beauty, and overall value of your home:
Reduced Energy Costs: New windows prevent energy loss and can make your home much more efficient, saving you anywhere from 10-20% on your monthly energy bill.
UV Protection: New window products are made with high-performance materials that can block out harmful UV rays, offering advanced solar protection from the sun.
Easy Maintenance: Along with improved energy-efficiency and other important features, new window products are designed for easier cleaning and maintenance. This can help you enjoy more beautiful looking windows throughout the year, for decades longer than ever before.
Safety and Security: Older windows, deteriorating windows, single-hung windows, and those made with cheaper quality materials are often dangerous for a number of reasons. Newer window products are thicker, more durable, and incredibly resistant to impact. In fact, many models offer shatterproof technology that can keep you safe from accidents, while offering advanced protection against burglars and other threats.
Noise Reduction: Thick, premium-quality windows mean calmer, quieter indoor living environments. If you can currently hear all of the noises coming in from the street, or have noticed that you’re starting to, replacing your windows can restore the peace and quiet inside your home.
Curb Appeal: One of the greatest advantages of new windows is the beauty they can add to both the interior and exterior of your home. If your home’s current windows are fogged up, cloudy, old, deteriorating, and ugly, new windows can help to transform your property into a stunningly beautiful one.
Home Value: New windows are an attractive home feature for prospective buyers and can help you get top dollar for your home should you ever decide to sell. Make sure to choose the most innovative and high-tech window products you can find to expect the best return on your investment possible.
The Most Popular Window Styles
The design of your window can come in many styles and sizes, from the basic single-hung or double-hung window to the stunning look of a bay or a bow model. Choosing the right one for the right space in your home takes a bit of knowledge and some design expertise, which is why you should always consult with an expert when purchasing new windows for your home.
Some of the most popular window styles in US homes include the following options:
· Bay: Bay windows are classically beautiful windows that add incredible aesthetic appeal to any home construction. While designs will vary, most bay windows feature a picture window flanked by two angled windows that project out from the walls of the home. Bay windows are sometimes accompanied by window seats.
· Bow: Bow windows are similar to bay windows. However, the entire projection is curved and made up of four or five windows, instead of three.
· Casement: A casement window is a window that is attached to the frame by one or more hinges. These windows typically have two sashes that open out to the sides, although this will vary. Other variations of casement windows include hopper windows—which have hinges at the bottom, and awning windows, which feature hinges at the top.
· Double-Hung: Double-hung windows are the modernized version of single-hung windows, which are both some of the most popular selling windows of all time. Single hung windows feature a movable sash that opens from the bottom, while double-hung windows improve on this design by featuring two movable sashes that open and close on the bottom and the top.
· Garden: Garden windows are a specialty design that extends from the main walls of the house, serving as both a window and a display space for plants and other items. These are also sometimes called greenhouse windows and can enhance the architectural beauty of your home’s exterior in stunning ways.
· Picture: A picture window is usually installed in high places, such as a high wall below a vaulted ceiling. Picture windows are used solely for adding in natural light and a view, as they cannot be opened.
· Sliding: Sliding windows are another popular window model in home construction. Sliding windows open from side to side—saving more space than windows that open out onto the street, or into the home.
Choosing Your Window Materials: Panes, Frames, and Features
Once you’ve decided on a window style, choosing the materials is next on the list. Most professional window companies will recommend a manufacturer to you that suits your style preferences and your budget or come up with a list of options that meet your specifications (often representing a wide range of prices).
Because today’s window products are so advanced and come in such a wide variety of options, it can be difficult to decide on the best ones for your project. Each window pane type, frame, and specific features will have its list of pros and cons when compared to others that offer a different set of characteristics—which is why it’s a good idea to learn a bit about your options before visiting a contractor, to avoid becoming overwhelmed with the choices.
In this section, we’ll go over our recommendations for some of the most popular materials and important features used on window products today, and the benefits and downsides of each one.
· Double, Triple, and Quadruple Pane Windows: Double pane windows are perhaps the most common type of window glass structure used in home constructions and renovations. This is because double-pane options are far superior to single-pane, which are cheaper and less durable. In recent years, triple and quadruple pane windows have emerged onto the market, offering even greater durability and performance than double-pane options. For best results, look for Energy-Star approved products for seriously energy-efficient window
· Wood Frames: The most traditional choice for windows has always been wood. Wood frames are beautiful and can be painted in an endless variety of colors and styles to suit any home design. An important note to consider before purchasing wood frames is the amount of maintenance required, although triple-glazing features and other innovations for wood frames have reduced the amount of upkeep necessary. Another important consideration is cost. In general, wood is more expensive than other materials to install but will last a lifetime (up to 60 years or longer) when taken care of properly.
· Vinyl Frames: The benefits of vinyl are many. This material is popular for its cost-effectiveness and its super strong and durable frame. Vinyl windows won’t last as long as other materials like wood but can hold up for 30 years or longer before needing replacement.Best of all, vinyl is engineered not to warp, chip, crack, or fade, and won’t ever need to be repainted.
· Low-E Glass: Low-E glass materials offer better protection against solar heat, and reflect the sun’s rays at higher levels than high emissivity models like single-pane windows.Low-e windows are highly energy efficient windows that work to effectively bring down your heating and cooling costs throughout the year.
Top Window Brands for Home Window Replacement
At Texas Remodeling Team, we work with a huge variety of amazing window manufacturers from the United States and all over the world. Many of them are household names and enjoy a widespread reputation for quality, value, and fine craftsmanship. Our company works with only the best materials in the industry for our home remodeling projects—and takes great pride in our ability to find the best products at the most affordable prices for our customers.
The differences between the various manufacturers range from price to style, and function. While all of the products we use are of the highest quality, some manufacturers focus more on functionality or energy efficiency, while others place more emphasis on strength and weather resistance technology. If you’re trying to decide on the right windows for your home and your budget, it’s best to work with a trusted window expert that can walk you through your options and suggest the best ones for you, according to your home improvement goals.
Here are a few examples of some of the biggest names in window manufacturers that our contractors trust at Texas Remodeling Team:
Andersen Windows: A leading brand in the industry. Andersen windows are made of the best quality materials and boast a longer life expectancy than the average brand.
Pella Windows: These windows are not only functional and strong, but they’re also well known for being aesthetically appealing. Pella specializes in wood frames but also provide vinyl and fiberglass options as well. Consider this brand if you want double or triple pane windows as these windows are highly efficient.
Milgard Windows: Most known for its vinyl options, this brand specializes in offering a variety of styles and functions from soundproofing to offering a modern look complete with thin frames. If versatility is your need, then consider this brand for your window replacement needs.
Simonton Windows: This brand specializes in vinyl, making it the best option for homeowners who want to go with vinyl windows specifically. UV and infrared light protection is an installation away with this brand.
Harvey Windows: Harvey windows specialize in superior-quality vinyl and wood frames, and is particularly well known for double hung and casement style windows. They also offer a solid soundproofing line known as the Acoustic Series for serious noise reduction—for soundproofing studios, basements, and other constructions along with other home replacement windows.
Loewen Windows: Quite simply, this brand is best known for its ability to handle inclement windows from storms to extreme cold. In addition, their energy efficiency options are top choices for homeowners seeking a serious reduction in their energy bill.
Ply Gem: This brand is all about premium vinyl products and superior insulation. Whether double or triple-paned, you can be sure that your heated and cooled air is staying inside where it belongs with this brand.
Alside Windows: For those who want affordability and quality look no further than Alside. This brand is also known for its energy efficiency, making it a popular choice for those looking for long-term savings.
PGT Windows: Mostly for those who live in hurricane-prone homes, this brand also manufactures more common window types. However, inclement weather protection is nearly unmatched with this brand.
Polaris Windows: Reduced fogging, pane damage, or staining is a reality with this brand option. In addition, energy efficiency is at a peak, thanks to its warm-edge technology.
Deciding on Hiring Professionals or DIY Window Replacement
It can be tempting to use a local contractor or even do it yourself when it comes to window replacement. Doing so would be a mistake that will cost you far more than hiring professional window contractors would have cost in the first place. You or your local contractors lack the necessary tools, skills, and experience to finish the job in a timely andsatisfactory manner.
Keep in mind that even the best-made windows will mean absolutely nothing if installed improperly. For example, a window that boasts great energy efficiency but is not installed correctly will sit in the frame incorrectly and therefore protect against nothing. That’s why you need a team that has the right tools and experience so that the job gets done correctly the first time.
That said, not all professional window installers are created equal. Make sure when choosing your team of professionals that you utilize the quick guide below to streamline your selection process.
Design: Your windows should be a reflection of style and function, and can also impact the energy-efficiency of your home. Make sure you’re working with a team that has options to offer and will work with you to determine the best one for you.
High Quality: Make sure their products are of high quality and will last for years after the installation is complete.
Expert Installation: Getting a flawless installation is a lot easier when you work with contractors that are properly certified and have years of experience. Make sure your choice fits this to a T.
Convenient Financing: Many professional contractors offer excellent financing programs that homeowners can take advantage of—like our special on new windows at Texas Remodel Team that starts at just $99 a month. To find the best rates, be sure to compare prices between companies and check your eligibility for their best payment programs.
Window Replacement Through the Seasons
In a perfect world, window replacement would only be needed or performed when the weather is perfect—when it’s not too hot, and not too cold. However, replacement windows can be installed at any time of the year, and there are various pros and cons that come with planning your replacement during any of the seasons.
Here’s what you need to know when planning a spring, summer, fall, or winter window replacement:
One of the most popular seasons for home remodeling is the spring and for a good reason. In fact, Spring is largely considered to be the ideal season for improving the home—thanks to the mild, pleasant temperatures that haven’t yet turned into the scorching heat of summer. In addition, you can expect longer daylight hours, which contribute to shorter projects. Keep in mind that the busy season for installers begins in spring so you’ll have to be flexible with your schedule.
This season is the only one that beats out spring when it comes to the best time of year. The long daylight hours and ease of caulking make installation a snap. It’s the busy season so scheduling can be an issue.
We recommend doing your project in July when others are busy with vacations and back to school plans, for easier scheduling with a window replacement company. Keep in mind that summer means dealing with insects like mosquitoes, and difficulty keeping the house at a comfortable temperature during installation—just two of the downsides to a summer window replacement.
Daylight hours are dwindling in the autumn, and the upcoming winter season can mean more of a rush to complete home improvement projects like window installations. This can mean that scheduling your remodeling company can be a bit more difficult. The main benefit of a fall window replacement is that it’s your last chance to finish the project before winter arrives.
Many homeowners put off doing home improvement related tasks until it’s absolutely necessary. Sometimes, this means that the need to replace windows strikes during the winter. The signs are more noticeable and unbearable in the winter than other months. This season is all about the need instead of the want. The good news is that booking a window replacement company is likely to be easy—as most will have wide open schedules that work with yours. Additionally, most reputable companies will have special winter installation methods to minimize the downsides of replacing windows during the cold months—particularly with dealing with the cold and stormy weather.
Regardless of the season, the most important thing to remember is that if your windows need replacing, then it's best to do so no matter the season. Waiting can be costly due to the strain on your heating and cooling units. Plus, once the window needs replacing, its ability to maintain its function drops dramatically.
Texas’ Most Trusted Home Remodeling Experts
In Texas, your best bet for a successful window renovation lies with the experts at Texas Remodel Team. For over 25 years, we’ve helped countless customers make the most out of their home renovations with quality products, reliable installations, and affordable pricing. We work closely with our customers to make sure we’ve covered all of the bases for a satisfying and stress-free renovation. We even offer convenient financing options and customer-first policies that help to make your window replacement the most positive experience possible.
For more information on window replacement and our list of services that we provide at Texas Remodel Team, give us a call to speak with one of our friendly agents over the phone. Or, fill out our easy online form and we’ll get in touch with you about scheduling a free, in-home consultation and pricing estimate.