What You Need To Know Before Buying Replacement Windows

Choosing and buying replacement windows for your home can be a daunting task, especially with so many options available on the market. Many homeowners are unsure of what to look for.  Most want replacement windows that will last long, have add curb appeal, and provide significant energy savings.

The following 10 point replacement window buyers guide has been created to help you focus on the most important factors to consider.

1. Research Replacement Window Companies and Brands

If you want to make sure you are dealing with a reputable replacement window manufacturer, ask specific questions:

  1. How long has the replacement window company been in business?
  2. Who manufactures their replacement windows which will be installed?
  3. Who will be installing the replacement windows in your home?
  4. What industry accreditations does the replacement window company have?

Quite often companies selling replacement windows do not actually manufacture or do installations. Always check references and reviews, find window replacement costs online, if you want to find a reputable company.

2. Always Compare the Costs

Do not be fooled by companies offering exceptionally low prices on their replacement windows. There are many companies out there offering below average prices. However, these windows are usually of a lesser quality or below the average window size. These costs may also only cover a partial installation or none at all.

Once the correct size windows have been purchased and the job has been completed, you don’t want to be blindsided by a high price tag. Always compare costs before from at least 3 replacement window companies.

3. Choosing the Right Window Style

Almost all window companies have a wide variety to suit your home’s unique home window repair needs. Being able to add a personal touch really allows homeowners the luxury of a dream home transformation. Consider the following window styles to choose from:

  • Double Hung
  • Bay
  • Bow
  • Awning
  • Sliding
  • Casement
  • Custom Shapes

To help you decide what will be best for your home, be sure to check window styles and their operation by visiting a showroom near you.

4. Choosing the Right Window Frame

Replacing your old windows is an opportune time to consider new frame materials. Some of the most popular replacement window frame materials include:

  • Aluminum
  • Clad
  • Fiberglass
  • Wood
  • Vinyl

Wood – Wood is one of the most beautiful framing materials available. However, it does have a few drawbacks, such as being vulnerable to swelling and wood rot. Wood also needs regular maintenance in order to preserve its appeal. Clad windows are generally maintenance free though they do tend to mask problems over time.

Vinyl – Windows created from premium vinyl are one of the best options when it comes to replacement, especially if the uPVC has been fusion welded. Vinyl frames are also available in a wide variety of colors to suit your home’s needs.

Aluminum – These offer ultimate strength but can be highly inefficient in summer and winter months. They may also oxidize and on occasionally have condensation problems.

5. Consider Window Fitment Quality

A window sash is the part of a window which holds all the glass in place. It is surrounded by the outer frame which fits between the wall and sash.

The frame and sash should be created and installed to precisely fit your home’s wall openings. Wall openings should not need to be altered for fitment unless you are changing window style or size.

If you want the best performance, look for fusion welded windows with multi chambers. This will increase strength as well as thermal efficiency.

6. Understand Window Fitment Ratings

The stronger and more energy efficient a window is, the more it will cost. These higher costs are generally due to the improved materials and technology used in the manufacturing process.

Even though they cost more, the savings of an energy efficient window can offset your initial replacement and installation costs.


The U-value of a window has become the industry standard used to describe its energy efficiency. The more energy efficient a window is, the lower its U-value will be.

Solar Heat Gain

The solar heat gain (SHG) of a window refers to the amount of solar radiation allowed to pass through to heat up areas of the home. A window with a lower SHG rating means it will keep the home cooler during summer months, increasing energy efficiency and savings.

Design Pressure

A window’s design pressure (DP) is a measurement of pressure which a window can withstand in high wind and water loads. Windows with a higher DP rating offer increased window and glass strength. Living in storm-prone areas will make this rating essential.

7. Window Certification Labels

An ENERGY STAR rating shows energy efficiency and specific performance requirements. Certifications provide unprejudiced ratings on replacement windows to help homeowners evaluate them. Never accept a verbal certification. Always look for the labels on the product.

8. Enquire About Window Installation

Many homeowners check out brands and companies, but forget to check who will be installing them? Professional window installation is just as important as the design, manufacturing, and technology that goes into it. If it is not installed properly, it may not be energy efficient or provide any benefits.

In some cases, an incorrect installation will void any warranty. Replacement window companies will not cover defects caused by incorrect installation.

9. Replacement Window Warranty

Always get your window warranties in writing. Insist on reading it and get a copy. The installation should be covered as well.

If you do not get it in writing, you are not guaranteed a warranty. Find out how you would go about any claims or any other issues.

10. Check Replacement Window Samples

Always ask to see more than just a brochure. Beware of companies that try sell you replacement windows in pictures. Insist on seeing full working models before installation.

Check build quality including locks, hinges, and other part movements. Remember, replacement windows should be a one-time investment. Always make sure you are happy with their operation and design quality.

What To Know About Impact Resistant Windows Before Buying

Buying a house is a big step in life. The decision goes beyond monetary value and many homeowners can attest to the fact that a home allows you to lead a less stressful life. Having said that, it is clear why most people would never process the idea of losing their house. Case in point are the people living in coastal areas.

They know too well the dangers that come with hurricanes and strong winds. As such, one of the ways of keeping your house less prone to hurricanes is by reinforcing and protecting the windows.

Impact Resistant Windows Overview

At this point, it’s necessary to understand the meaning of impact resistant windows. To start with, they differ from hurricane windows. The manufacturing process of impact windows involves lamination. At the lamination stage, manufacturers use different materials to produce two types of impact windows with varying degrees of impact resistance.

The first material is polyvinyl butyral (PRB) sandwiched between layers of glass. To increase the strength of this type of window, the process uses many layers of PRB between the glass.

Afterward, manufacturers place them in autoclaves set at 400 degrees Fahrenheit under intense pressure. You can use these windows if your area experiences light winds and low-level hurricanes.

If you live in an area prone to strong winds, the PET laminated glass windows should be your choice. They prevent objects from tearing through into the house. During the installation process, contractors use structural silicone to seal the windows to the frame. A number of the best known window brands have a line of impact resistant windows : review replacement alpine windows here.

Why Install Impact Resistant Windows?

The main reason for installing impact-resistant windows is to safeguard your house from hurricanes. Strong windows can be the difference between a shattered house and safety.

When strong winds hit, they can break through weak windows. Once that happens, the house will become vulnerable as the roof could be the next part to be destroyed. Although it would take strong winds to carry the roof, the process can take place within minutes. Impact windows prevent damage caused by the winds and their objects, hence keeping your house intact.

Save Money

Many people take a back step when it comes to installing impact windows because of the cost implications. From another perspective, investing in such windows will pay off in the long run. For instance, insurance firms tend to give insurance discounts to home owners who have installed impact windows. Insurance firms do so because they understand impact resistant windows make homes less vulnerable.

These type of windows replacement also offer more efficiency. The laminated glass provides an excellent material for preventing heat and cold from entering the house. As such, you will not have to switch on your air conditioner as frequently as households without the above windows. It will only take a few months before you notice a drop in your monthly energy usage.

Increase Your Home’s Value

You should consider installing these windows if you want to increase the resale value of your house. This aspect is beneficial to real estate agents or owners who plan to sell their houses in future. Many people will be ready to buy a house with installed impact windows.

Noise Reduction

Impact glass windows are also effective in noise cancellation. This is another reason that increases the resale value of a home. Buyers will always be ready to buy a home that can provide easy-going environments for living.

Building Code Standards

Just like other products, resistant windows must meet specific standards. The body in charge of ensuring manufacturers meet the required standards is the American Society for Testing & Materials (ASTM). The application of some codes will depend on your area. The main idea behind the regulations on impact windows is to make sure they can withstand the launch missile impact tests.

Now that you know exactly what you are dealing with, it’s clear to see that, right from manufacturing to the testing stage, the main idea behind impact resistant windows is to ensure safety.

In the process, the windows also present significant other benefits, so you can go and buy impact resistant windows without any problem. Just remember, correct installation is the only way to ensure that your impact resistant windows perform optimally.