It’s no secret that vinyl replacement windows are leaders of the pack when it comes to popular home improvement projects. And no wonder, especially if what they’re replacing is past its prime - battered, peeling wood, perhaps, or that grubby, discolored aluminum so in vogue during the late 20th century. Aside from being maintenance-free and weather-resistant, vinyl windows offer excellent energy efficiency, long life, and styles to fit any décor, from quality manufacturers including Andersen, Champion, Milgard, PGT, and Silverline.
Some issues to keep in mind when shopping for vinyl replacement windows:
- All windows are not created equal. Compare warranties on everything from leakage to condensation to structural integrity to locks. Compare energy efficiency, looking for both Energy Star and NFRC labels (and don’t forget to apply for any applicable rebates!).
- Because the replacement window is installed in the frame of the previous window, it’s a less costly option than a new-construction window, which includes a frame and is installed into the bare window opening in the wall (and may be an entirely different size, adding more costs).
- The good news: no painting, ever. The bad news: if you don’t like the color of the vinyl as it comes from the factory, you’re stuck. Years ago, white was your only option; nowadays most replacement window manufacturers offer vinyl frames and trim in a variety of shades. But custom color isn’t really an option.
- Because vinyl is relatively flexible compared to wood or aluminum, vinyl frames are often thicker, especially around the exterior, in order to deliver the necessary strength. Depending on the window that’s being replaced, this can result in a noticeably smaller glass area than with the old window.
- In many cases, the warranty depends on the window being installed by an authorized contractor.
Not only are the new windows a major investment, you’ll be living with them for a long time. Because vinyl windows come in so many styles, with so many features, at so many price points, it’s easy to get overwhelmed.
Taking the time to figure out just the right windows for your home - not just the energy-saving features you want, but a look that truly enhances its beauty - is essential. If you think you might benefit
from some expert guidance, give us a call. Our experienced window contractors can provide real-life expertise in getting your home the windows it deserves.
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