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Ready for a window renovation? How to get started

Window renovation.

With the snow, ice and frigid temperatures of winter finally behind most of the country (fingers crossed), homeowners across the country are undoubtedly eager to throw open their windows and breathe in all that fresh spring air and sunlight.

The big question is: Are your windows ready?

All through winter, you may have felt the drafts creeping in along your window frames, noticed condensation gathering inside the glass, or experienced surging energy bills as your heat escaped with every cold snap.

Spring is the perfect time to finally start that window renovation you’ve been putting off.

What are the signs you need a window renovation/replacement?

How do you know when it’s time for a window renovation or replacement?

First look for visible damages, such as worn weather stripping or faulty latches, which only necessitates a repair, not a full replacement. But if you see peeling paint, warping, rotting, water-damaged wood or foggy condensation, you’ll likely need to invest in a full window replacement.

Next, be aware of the not-so-visible signs. Maybe you’ve felt a draft near a closed window or notice that the outside noises can be strongly heard inside. Similarly, if you struggle to open or close your windows, it could be a sign that age and moisture have damaged the windows to the point that they are no longer operable and should be replaced.

Finally, if your energy bills are high year-round, now is the time for a window renovation using energy efficient windows installed by a professional. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, heat gain and heat loss through windows are responsible for 25% to 30% of residential heating and cooling energy use. 

Replacing existing windows with ENERGY STAR® certified windows can potentially result in significant energy savings. Keep in mind, however, that windows are only one part of the equation. Other factors like your roof, siding, and doors play a role in energy efficiency and savings, too!

Read: Is it time for new windows?

Starting the window renovation process with Long Windows.

Long Windows®, a member of the Long Roofing™ family of brands, is the Mid-Atlantic region’s home improvement and window replacement experts.

We are the exclusive provider of Quantum2 Heat Mirror® windows in the Washington, D.C., metro area and offer high-quality windows throughout the New England metro regions, all with a no-nonsense lifetime warranty on labor and materials.

Long Windows also offers worry-free financing and will work with you to find an affordable solution for your window replacement project.

Read: Heat mirror windows: The right move for smart homeowners

Your window options.

Types of window options.

There are a wide variety of window options out there, but don’t worry: Your Long Windows expert will help you wade through them all during your in-home window renovation consultation. A few things to know:

Materials: Window frames can be made from several different types of materials, all offering different benefits.  

  • Aluminum: Lightweight, durable, easy to create custom shapes
  • Wood: Good insulator, great aesthetics
  • Vinyl: Low maintenance, durable, good insulator, the most affordable window option
  • Composite: Reuse sawdust (“green” factor), can be painted and/or made to look like wood
  • Hybrid: Combine the best of different products

Glass: There are four basic types of treated window panes on the market: Single, double, triple or quad glazed. These terms refer to the number of panes encased in the frame.

In addition, glazing and coatings are applied to keep heat out in the summertime and in during the winter months. These materials also block ultraviolet rays, reducing the effect of direct light on upholstery and other items in the home. More glazing generally means more energy efficiency.

The three types of coatings often used to treat the window panes are low-emissivity (low-e), reflective and spectrally sensitive.

Style: There are a lot more options out there, but here are the five most common window types.

  • Double Hung: Most popular option. It consists of two sashes that move up and down, allowing for half of the window to be open at a time.
  • Casement: Another popular option, casement windows are hinged vertically to open and close like a door. These are often operated with a crank or handle.
  • Awning: Similar to casement windows, but are hinged horizontally. When opened, they resemble an awning shape.
  • Sliding: These windows slide to open, moving on top and bottom tracks. They open on one half and have a vertical meeting rail.
  • Bow and Bay: Generally larger, these windows are built to project outward from an outside wall. The windows “bow” out forming a “bay” in the room.

How to match the look and feel of your home.

Just as every home has a unique architectural design, so should your windows. It’s important to choose new windows that stay true to your home’s distinct style. “Different styles of windows unavoidably evoke different architectural eras, both traditional and modern, so it’s important to choose windows that complement rather than contradict the style of your house,” architect Arrol Gellner writes on Inman.

For example, if you have a Colonial or Victorian style home, you might consider opting for double-hung windows. A California Rancher style home would be unthinkable without sliding glass windows, and a casement style window can be found in almost all period revival home styles, Gellner noted.

“Whether you have a modern and contemporary home that features floor to ceiling glass windows and doors or you have a traditional Tudor style home with classic diamond-shaped mullions, adhere to your home’s architectural style for guidance,” advised FresHome.com.

Read: Window Design 101

 The benefits of new windows.

Benefits of new windows.

There are many benefits of a window renovation project, from the seemingly mundane (new windows are easier to clean) to the more esoteric (improving the appearance and comfort of your home).

Then, there’s the fact that new windows have the potential to save you money in terms of energy efficiency, and even increase the value of your home when you decide to sell. New windows can also block harmful UV rays, which damage carpet and furniture, saving you on those replacement costs as well.

Finally, there’s the fact that new windows also improve security and safety since old, faulty windows can make it easier for criminals to gain entry into your home.

Read: Windows and home security: How to make your home safer

Is it time to replace your windows? 

If your windows are drafty, foggy, damaged or don’t function properly anymore, consider new replacement windows that are energy efficient, secure and beautiful. Contact Long Windows for a free assessment at (866) 275-4675 or visit us online.