Window Replacement Rockville MD allows you to upgrade your old double-hung windows to a more energy-efficient model. Look for a company with extensive product selection and local professionals who can handle purchase and installation.
Tobie Stanger is a senior editor who covers home and shopping-related topics for Consumer Reports. She also writes about home improvement products, like roofing and siding.
When you replace old windows, it’s important to choose the right window for your home. Obviously, you want to find a window that fits and looks good, but there are other factors as well. For instance, you need to consider the energy efficiency of the window and what features it offers. You also need to consider the price of the window and how long you expect it to last.
When choosing a replacement window, look for one that is labeled ENERGY STAR. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, installing new ENERGY STAR qualified windows can save you up to 13 percent on your energy bills. This is a significant savings that can help you pay for the cost of replacing your windows.
In addition to being ENERGY STAR qualified, the replacement window you choose should offer upgrades that add value to your home. For example, if you live in a cold climate, look for double-pane windows with Low-E coatings to prevent heat from escaping your home. You should also consider full screens that allow optimum airflow when the top and bottom windows are opened at once, as well as finely meshed screens that let more light through than standard ones.
Another thing to keep in mind is that if you are planning to sell your home, you should install windows with a view. Buyers will be attracted to these types of windows and will be willing to pay more for them.
A professional window contractor will be able to provide you with a wide selection of windows for your home, as well as provide you with a detailed estimate and installation plan. When looking for a contractor, pay special attention to how the company treats its customers.
For example, you should ask the company to explain the installation process. You should also make sure the installers are certified. In addition, it is important to have a written warranty in case something goes wrong during the installation. Also, you should read the warranty carefully and pay particular attention to the length of the warranty as well as what it covers.
Selecting a Contractor
Before hiring a professional to do your window replacement, you should carefully vet the contractors that you’re considering. You can do this in several ways. For one, you can ask for a list of references and then randomly call them to see what their experience was like with the contractor. You can also look at online reviews.
Another important question to ask a potential contractor is what type of insurance they have. A reputable contractor should carry workers’ compensation and property damage coverage to protect you in the event something goes wrong during the project. You should also ask a potential contractor to provide proof of insurance, which should clearly identify the insurance company and policy number.
When you have narrowed down your options, you’ll want to request a bid from each of them. This will allow you to compare pricing and services to find the best professional for the job. The bid should be very detailed and include the specific window brand, quantity of windows, their size and type, any add-on features and installation details, as well as labor and material costs. A good contract will also clearly identify warranty details, as well as who will manage them if there are any problems with the work performed.
During the bid process, it’s also a good idea to discuss your timeline and any other concerns you may have for the project. You’ll need to know how long you will have contractors in your home, for example, and whether you need to prepare your home ahead of time. A reputable contractor should be willing to address these concerns and explain how they can work around them to meet your needs.
A final step in choosing the right window replacement contractor is to read over the contract and carefully scrutinize it for errors. While errors are rare, it is still important to look at the fine print and make sure that everything is correct before you sign it. For more tips on vetting contractors, download Modernize’s free contractor checklist. A vetted professional will help you save money, avoid surprises during the project and ensure that your new windows are of the highest quality.
Preparing for the Installation
If you’re considering window replacement, it’s important to understand what the process involves so that you can manage it effectively. If you do this, you can ensure that your windows look great and perform as they should without any disruptions to your daily life.
Whether you’re replacing a single broken window or upgrading to new windows throughout the home, the installation process will begin with accurate measurements of the existing window openings. Then, the new windows are ordered based on these measurements. The installation crew will also inspect the old windows for damage, such as rot or sagging, which should be addressed before the new windows are installed.
There are two main types of window installations: full frame and pocket. A full frame installation removes the exterior cladding and trim around the existing window, leaving only the existing window sash in place. A pocket window installation uses a secondary frame that slips into the opening, which is a better option when you’re happy with the size, shape and operating style of the existing window.
To prepare for window replacement, it’s a good idea to remove curtains or drapes that are hanging over the windows. You should also cover furniture or bedding that’s sitting on the sills or near the windows to protect it from paint splatters and sealant drips. Finally, be sure to clear the area under the windows in case the installers need to get close to the foundation or siding.
If you choose to have the existing window sashes removed, your window installer will prep the frame for the new window by boreing 3/8-inch-diameter holes through the side jambs and into the head jamb. Next, the installer will spray foam into the sash-weight pockets to seal them and prevent air and water from seeping through. Then the installer will replace the sashes and install the new window. Before the job is complete, the installer will walk you through the completed project and answer any questions. You can also ask the installer for tips on how to care for your new windows and maintenance tips.
Installing the Windows
The new windows should be firmly installed, and any remaining gaps between the frame and casing should be filled with caulk or foam rubber backer rod. The installer should also trim off excess window sash and frame. Then he should inspect the interior and exterior of the frame for damage, and repair it as needed. If the frame is rotted or otherwise compromised, it should be replaced. Then the installer should install weather stripping on both sides of the frame.
The crew should carefully remove the old windows and check the window opening for proper fit and to make sure that it is square. If necessary, the contractor can use shims to adjust the frame. After the shims are in place, the contractor should screw through the shims to hold them in place, but not through the exterior casing or blind stops. Finally, the contractor should use a level to ensure that the window opens, closes and locks smoothly.
Installing the replacement windows
There are two types of window replacement: insert and full-frame. In insert window replacement (also known as frame-in-frame or pocket windows), the new windows are inserted into the existing window frames, leaving the old sash, operating hardware and covers in place. This type of installation is a good choice when the existing frames are in good condition or if you want to maintain the style of your home’s exterior.
Full-frame replacement is a better choice when the frames are damaged or rotted, or you’re changing the style of the window opening. The installer can add a header and sill to support the new window, which will be insulated and sealed for a tight seal.