Introduction to the Window Buyer’s Guide

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The window buyer’s journey will always begin with the desire to purchase and install new windows into the home. The decision to purchase new windows typically happens when building a new home or looking to replace existing windows. Generally speaking, homeowners will usually replace existing windows that are single-pane or inefficient, are experiencing wood rot, have extensive glass issues, are not operating well, or if they want to change the window style. Regardless of the reason, you have decided to buy new windows. Now what?

We have developed this buyer’s guide to answer many common questions, and to provide a walkthrough on what to expect when buying windows.

The Proper Window Installation

First and foremost, proper window installation is a highly technical process that can vary based on product type and the kind of application it is being installed into. During a proper installation, the installer ensures that the product is the correct size, that it is the style you want and that the finished product will have a tight seal to prevent air and water infiltration to eliminate drafts and potential water damage. Qualified installers will be familiar with proper industry installation techniques and will know the correct materials to use during installation. This will all ensure that the products you choose will perform as intended throughout the life of the product.

A qualified installer will also be able to properly trim out the window to provide an appealing and clean finished look. Because the installation process is complex and very hands-on, it is not a project that should be considered “DIY” and a professional installer should be contracted to do the work. Improper window installation can compromise the building envelope resulting in drafts, leaks and/or inefficient windows. Leaky windows can result in water damage to the building envelope, or mold growth which can be detrimental to your health.

Windows are a Long-Term Investment

The average product lifespan for most modern windows is upwards of 15-20+ years. Being that they last as long as they do, replacing windows is generally something you will do very infrequently during your lifetime. Replacing your windows however, is one of the most important home improvements you can make. Properly installed vinyl replacement windows can significantly increase your home’s overall thermal efficiency resulting in noticeable reductions to your utility bills over time. Vinyl window replacements can also boost a property’s resale value and translate to an upwards of 70%-75% return on investment should you decide to sell your house.  This is why it is a necessity to enlist the help of a contractor or installer when looking to buy and install new windows and/or doors.