Installing Replacement Windows: A Helpful Guide
Windows are one of the more expensive home improvement projects. However, windows are also important to both the exterior and interior of your home, arguably the most important feature of any great home. Now that you have settled on a type of window and manufacturer, it’s time to move forward by installing replacement windows.
Since you have already invested in replacement windows, you may have been considering the option of self-installation. Perhaps you just want more information on how the entire process works? We have put together this installing replacement window guide in order to help you make better, more informed decisions.
Steps to Installing Replacement Windows
There is a general procedure for how a homeowner finds replacement windows and making the actual installation. Here is a quick outline:
- Inspect your old windows and evaluate when it’s time for replacement ones.
- Determine a budget and shop accordingly.
- Select a type of window and style that fits your individual needs.
- Get quotes and evaluations from different window installers.
- Determine how you want to proceed with the window installation.
For the purpose of this article, we are assuming you are already at step four or five in the window replacement process. If not, we recommend you check out some of our other articles that discuss in more detail how to find the right type and style of window for your needs.
Self-Installation – The DIY Approach
We live in a DIY culture where it’s possible to learn just about anything you desire through the abundance of resources on the internet, including instructional videos on YouTube.
There is little doubt that you can teach yourself to install the replacement windows on your own. The more appropriate question is it a good idea?
In general, installing replacement windows is considered more of an advanced type of home improvement project. While there are many DIY home projects, installing brand new windows is not near as simple as you might think.
It is highly recommended that only homeowners with advanced workmanship consider the daunting task of self-installing brand new windows. Poor installation can lead to a number of issues down the road as well as not address problems new windows are designed to solve such as eliminating drafts and preventing water damage.
Additionally, installing replacement windows is physically challenging not to mention dangerous if doing so from a second or third story window. It involves ladders as well as an incredible amount of strength and endurance.
Finally, self-installing replacement windows take a firm time commitment, especially if doing so yourself or with minimal help. Even professional window installers that have done the task for years can take a couple of days in a team to complete an entire project.
When you replace the old out with the new you have to keep in mind that during this time the interior of your home will get exposed to the elements and other nuisances. As a result, most homeowners consider it best to hire the services of a professional.
Hiring a Professional Window Installer
It is understandable that some homeowners don’t wish to spend a lot of money on a window installer after forking over serious money for the windows themselves. However, the difference between a good installer and a bad installer is noticeable.
In fact, it can affect the actual quality of the windows and what they are promised to guarantee. For example, poor installation could lead to exposed sections that invite air drafts and also water leakage.
The statistics do not lie. Up to 70 percent of energy is lost through the doors and windows of a home. 90 percent of the energy escapes through the glass. Window replacements help solve the dilemma of costly energy bills and other inconveniences yet are only effective if installed properly.
Professional installers are literally in the business of replacing windows. It is their life and what they know best. So if you really want to guarantee the best value for the money you spent on new windows then it’s wise to hire a reputable, skilled window installer.
Finding the Best Window Installation Company
There are a lot of companies that advertise the ability to install replacement windows. However, that doesn’t mean all of them are good at it. Some companies, such as small business handyman, might install windows in addition to a number of other trades. Meanwhile, some larger companies specialize strictly in window installation. Both situations can work for you, but only if you do your homework.
As is the case with any home improvement project it’s a great idea to meet with several different window installers and receive a number of different quotes. Installation companies will meet you at your home, conduct a walk-through, make themselves available to answer questions or concerns, and then deliver you a quote — all with no obligation.
It is a good process to feel out which window installer seems like the most appropriate for your needs. You may value a company with decades of experience. You may value a company that’s personable and prides itself on a high level of customer service. Regardless, meeting with many different installers is your chance to assess the situation.
Expectations of a Replacement Window Installer
Since you’ll pay good money for an installation company, it’s reasonable that you establish some demands and expectations beforehand.
Every good window replacement company should provide you with a timeframe of expected completion. Construction projects don’t always go as planned yet you shouldn’t give a pass to a company that keeps putting off a start date or beats around the bush.
Some homeowners make the mistake of assuming you can only replace windows during the summer due to the weather. However, many window installers are capable of covering up vulnerabilities in your home for a day or two until the project is completed if the windows are installed over the colder months of the year.
Ask questions during your initial consultation with a window company. Ask a lot of questions. Try to make sure everything you expect and demand of the company is covered in detail and understood by the company. If it still seems like a good fit you can always proceed forward. Yet the first appointment is your one true chance to ask as many questions as possible and make sure the company is reputable before moving on.
The best replacement window installers always operate with:
- Strong Work Ethic
Deciding on Replacement Window Installation
While it’s possible to replace windows as a DIY project. Most homeowners lack the appropriate amount of experience and time to complete such a complex task.
If you do decide to hire a professional window installer there are many reputable companies on the market. After setting up personal appointments and collecting quotes, you’ll be clear on who’ll deliver the best.