With warmer weather finally here, now may be the perfect time to update your windows. Doing so can save you money through the energy savings you are most likely to get and it can increase the overall value of your home as well. Deciding what type of window replacement you would like, can be a bit tricky. Here are some basic facts to help you make your decision.
One: If you have casement windows that open by turning a crank, consider simply placing pocket windows into them for an instant update in style and function. You can still keep the casement style when opting for a pocket window, or you can venture elsewhere and purchase tilt-in single or double hung windows, sliding widows, or even picture windows, if you so choose. If you live in an area that is hurricane-prone, look into sliding hurricane shutters as well.
These are great because they give you the coverage you need during a storm but remain hidden away the rest of the year. Remember to consider all options when deciding which style you would like for your new windows. For example, if you have windows that are high up on the first floor, are on a second story, or are simply out of your reach, you may want to consider tilt-ins because they allow you to clean them with ease, a fantastic option that you may not have now.
Two: If you have double hung windows, replacing the working part of the window with a new sash kit is simple, practical and will update the look of your home in no time at all. The great thing about sash kits is you can choose from a wide variety of materials for them, such as vinyl, primed wood, or even half and half (with vinyl being on the exterior). This project is relatively easy because you are putting the sash kit into an existing window frame or jamb, so extensive work is not required. You will, however, with this window as well as any window, have to be extremely precise with your measuring. A sash kit simply replaces your glass and its casing, keeping the existing frame intact.
Three: If you have the proper space for one, a garden window can be a delight in a home. These windows are large, allowing plenty of light into the home, and have one fixed window in the middle and two smaller windows, one on each side of the large one. The smaller ones can be made to open. These windows make good seating spaces, garden or plant spaces, or simply extended sources of light into the home. A big consideration here is if you have the space and the design on the house to create one because actually protrude on the outside of the building.
Four: If you have wood windows and want to replace them with something more efficient, consider installing aluminum-clad or vinyl windows. This is an extensive job that generally requires a contractor but if your energy bills are through the roof, this may be the best option for you and you will most likely notice a difference in them immediately.
Five: If you have windows with frames that are rotting past the point of no return, opting for the professionally installed aluminum-clad or vinyl windows may be the best option for you as well. They will instantly save you money on lost heat or cooling escaping through the rotted places, they will update the look and value of your home, and they will save you time and money in maintenance.
Which ever choice you make for your replacement or windows updating projects, make sure to study your options first. There are so many different ways you can update, with costs ranging from minimal to grandiose and time frames for replacement ranging from a few hours to a few days. Know which options in your desired price range will provide the look closest to what you would like for your home. Also be sure to choose the materials that are most likely to save you money in energy efficiency. Check into other options as well, such as ease of opening, replacing windows that need propped up with those that stay open on their own, etc. You may also want to look into the decorative side of windows and search for intricate or fancy grills, glass types or colors, depending on where you are installing the new windows and what cost you are willing to pay.
The most important thing to do is research with more than one company before choosing. Most window companies will come to your home, measure and offer a written estimate for no charge. Whether you are considering doing the work yourself, or will be using a contractor, I urge you to get the estimates first to make sure you have a realistic idea of what your projected costs are going to be.