If you’re reading this, it means that you’re starting to plan your window replacement project. Replacing your windows may seem like a simple process, but as you research your project, you’ll find there’s many decisions that need to be made. You’ll be faced with many options regarding window frame material, glass type, coatings, customizations and more.
But don’t worry — you’re in the right place! WindowPRO has helped thousands of homeowners in Southeast Michigan find windows to fit their home and budget. Consider this article your starter guide for window replacement. Here, we’ll discuss how to outline your project goals, questions to ask your window replacement contractor, key window terms to know and different features you may select for your replacement windows.
First Things First: Do Your Windows Need To Be Replaced?
Like most everything in your home, your windows have a lifespan. Most homeowners replace their windows because they’ve become damaged or inoperable or to improve the aesthetics of their home. If you think your windows might need replacing, most Lansing window replacement contractors offer free inspections to assess the current state of your windows.
The most common reasons we see for homeowners replacing their windows are the following:
- Window Damage: This includes chips, cracks, broken glass and also damage to the window frame material such as splintering, warping and dents.
- Drafty Windows: Homeowners often replace their windows because they notice draftiness. If your windows do little in terms of insulating your home, it’s probably time for a replacement.
- Difficulty Operating: Your windows should open and close with ease. If your windows are broken or difficult to operate, this is a sign that your windows will need to be replaced soon.
- Foggy Or Cloudy Glass: Foggy glass could simply be due to dirt build on your windows, or it could be a sign of a more serious issue – a broken window seal.
If your windows fall into one or more of the above categories, it’s most likely time to replace them.
Setting Up Realistic Project Goals and Budget
At the beginning of your project, it’s important to consider your budget and project goals. How important is energy efficiency? Durability? Aesthetics? Identifying and ranking the most important aspects of your window replacement project will help you keep your project within scope and stay within budget.
Setting up a realistic budget can help you weigh the importance of customizations and features. If you are looking at replacing many or all of the windows in your home, you may consider taking your project in phases. Many homeowners replace their windows in phases to stay within a budget while achieving the quality and features they desire. We outline how much you can expect to pay for replacement windows as well as more helpful information on our Learning Center.
Once you’ve done some initial research, the next step would be contacting a Lansing window replacement contractor. Your contractor can help walk you through your options according to your unique home and budget!
Questions To Ask Your Window Replacement Contractor
We recommend getting bids from 2-3 window replacement contractors before selecting a contractor. This ensures your home is getting a fair assessment and price. During your interview process, we recommend asking the following questions.
- How long have you been in business?
- What type of warranty do you offer on workmanship and on your windows?
- Do you have any awards or specialty certificates?
- What would you recommend for my home?
This will help you get a feel for each company, how they do business, and their assessment and recommendations for your home. Remember that with window replacements, price and quality have a direct relationship. In addition to selection, there are other intangible qualities to consider from window replacement contractors such as warranty, company reputation and years of installation experience.
Learning To Speak Window: Important Terms To Know
Understanding some key terms will help you conduct thorough research and intelligently speak to a window professional. Below are a few important terms you may want to be familiar with while starting your window replacement journey:
- Single Hung: On a single hung window, the top sash does not operate. Instead, it remains in place while the bottom sash can be opened or closed.
- Double Hung: A double-hung window has two operable sashes that each move independently. The sashes slide in tracks built into the frame and are held in position by either friction, counterweights or springs.
- Slider Windows: Slider windows combine the ventilation capabilities of single or double-hung windows with easy-to-open and close operation.
- Casement: With a casement window, there’s a hinge on one side of the sash that lets the window open either to the left or to the right.
- Bow & Bay Windows: A bay window is a classic, spanning design that combines a large center window with two narrower windows on either side. A bow window also extends past the exterior wall, but bow windows are usually made up of four or more similarly sized windows, which creates a curved rather than an angled look.
- Pane: This refers to the physical glass pane. You may select single, double or triple window panes.
- Frame: The frame material is the stationary portion of the window that surrounds the glass. Common options include: vinyl, fiberglass, aluminum, clad and wood.
- Muntins: These are bars that form a decorative grille pattern.
- Sash: The operating portion of the window that holds the glass. It is stationary and separate from the frame.
Window Installation Options
Having an expert install your windows is just as important as choosing the right type. Improper window installation is a leading cause of premature window failure. To ensure your new replacement windows last as long as possible and operate to their fullest capacity, they must be installed perfectly. While DIY solutions may seem appealing, improper installation will end up costing you in the long run.
Are New Windows A Good Investment?
Window replacement is a top five remodeling project in terms of cost recovery and joy score, according to the National Association of Realtors 2022 Remodeling Impact Report. Cost recovery refers to the project cost that is recouped by an increase in your home’s value. It should be noted that not only do replacement windows have a high cost recovery, but the project cost is typically recouped by energy savings as well.
There are many benefits to a window replacement such as increased energy efficiency, security and aesthetics. Rest assured knowing your window replacement is a smart investment in your home that is valued by potential home buyers.
Top-Rated Window Replacement In Southeast Michigan
Window PRO has served Southeast Michigan homeowners since 1923. We’re a top-rated Ann Arbor window replacement company and are proud of the accolades we’ve earned from our customers.
Ready to replace your windows with an Ann Arbor contractor you can trust? WindowPRO offers high quality window replacements and has a large selection of windows, including highly rated windows from Marvin and Provia. If you’re ready to get started on your window replacement, we’d love to see if we’d be a good fit for your project. Contact us today to set up your free, no-hassle consultation.