Has it been a long time since the windows in your home were replaced? Are you dealing with high energy bills or rooms that always feel colder than they ought to be? Or maybe your windows simply don’t seem to be working properly. If any of these situations sound familiar, it might be a good time to consider replacing your windows.
Although windows might seem like pretty simple things, there are actually a lot of different things you’ll have to consider when making your decision. Here are a few of the most important things to look for as you shop around for replacement windows.
Much like cars, phones, and computers, windows are also available with different features. Which features you should look for will depend on how you want your windows to perform and if you think it will make them easier to maintain. For example, if you’re replacing windows on a second story of your home, you may want to consider getting windows that tilt inward to make it easier to clean the exterior side of the window. Or if you’re trying to make your home more energy efficient, you’ll want to look for double or triple glazed windows that are insulated with argon. If you live in a very noisy area, triple glazed windows are great for reducing noise in your house.
Replacement windows are available in many different materials and the type of material you choose will make a big difference not only on your home’s appearance, but also in how well they perform, how much effort you have to put into maintaining them, and how much they cost. For example, vinyl replacement windows are one of the most popular types of windows for many reasons. They’re more affordable and energy efficient than many other types of windows and require very little maintenance. On the other hand, many homeowners love the look of wood windows, but they are the most expensive type of replacement window and require a lot more maintenance than vinyl windows.
Windows come in a wide variety of styles that can make a dramatic difference in your home’s appearance and how comfortable your home is. Double-hung windows are one of the most popular window styles and have two sashes that can be opened. Picture windows let in lots of natural light, but can’t be opened. Bay windows are an excellent way to let in more light, improve your view, and make a room feel larger and more open. Casement windows are a very popular choice. Unlike other types of windows where the panes move from side to side or up and down, casement windows are on hinges that allow them to swing open like a door. These are just a few of the most popular styles of windows, so be sure to do your research to figure out which style would work best in your home.
One of the most common reasons why homeowners choose to replace their windows is because they’re trying to make their home more energy efficient. If this is what you’re hoping to achieve, be sure to look for windows that have glass with a low-E coating and have multiple panes that are insulated with argon. You’ll also want to look for windows with a high R-value, typically around 4-7. The R-value indicates how well a window is able to insulate, so a higher number here is definitely a good thing. But on the other hand, you’ll want windows with a low U-factor. The U-factor is the rate at which a window reflects conducts heat, so the lower the U-factor, the less heat it conducts.