If you have outdated or failing windows in your home, you may be on the hunt for replacement windows that can offer better energy savings, functionality and beauty. There are so many replacement windows out there to choose from that it can be a bit overwhelming when it comes to making the right selection.
Types of Replacement Windows
The types of replacement windows you choose will depend on what type of window is in the space already, unless you’re looking to make some major changes and upgrades. Here’s a look at the most popular types:
- Double hung windows: These are a classic window choice, with lower and upper sashes that can be adjusted for air ventilation and easy cleaning. Most models have sashes that tilt inward, while others have sashes that slide vertically along a track. This is a top window for performance, as they’re easy to open, close, maintain and clean. They also come in many styles, materials, and colors to perfectly complement the properties in your HOA.
- Single-hung windows: These are similar to double-hung windows but they only have a single operable sash. They’re more affordable than double hung windows but they afford less of a view with fewer ventilation opportunities.
- Sliding windows: These move horizontally along a track instead of vertically, with one single panel being able to slide while the other stays fixed. Keep in mind, while convenient to open, dirt and debris can accumulate in the bottom track. But this is one of the more affordable window styles.
- Casement windows: These are hinged on one side, allowing the window to pivot outward. Best for ventilation and easy operation, these windows are a popular choice for many homeowners. However, you have to consider location when installing these windows. Because they swing outward, they could create an obstruction and safety hazard when open (such as near common areas, pathways or patios).
Knowing which one to choose for your home will take careful consideration of cost, performance level, and location.
When Do You Need Replacement Windows?
In addition to age, there are many factors that will determine when you should replace your existing windows. But no matter what the reason, replacing older, poorly-functioning windows is a smart upgrade for any homeowner. Here are some top signs you should consider replacing your windows:
- Higher Than Usual Energy Bills – High energy bills are a result of poorly functioning windows, leading to drafts and higher energy bills than you’re used to. There may be a problem with the window seals and insulation, causing it not to be airtight any longer.
- Infiltration of Outside Noise – If you are hearing louder than usual external noise in your home, you may need to install double- or triple-pane replacement windows that are insulated with special gas in between responsible for absorbing sound waves.
- Broken or Rotting Windows – This is an obvious sign, but one that many homeowners don’t realize until it’s too late. Over time, window frames can break down, rot and decay. They may feel soft to the touch or look like they’re sagging. A leaky window that’s not doing its job can encourage mold growth and insect infestation.
- Termite Damage – Moisture in a window frame attracts termites that can do untold amounts of structural damage, not just to the window itself but to the surrounding areas as well. While you will need to replace the offending windows, you have to first treat the termite problem so it doesn’t happen again.
- Condensation – Condensation between the layers of glass means you have a failed window seal. Not only is it difficult to see out of the window, the insulating gas that used to be present between the panes can escape, leading to less energy efficiency and higher bills.
- Poor Operation – If the windows are hard to open and close (and stay that way), they may need to be replaced. There are many reasons for sticking windows, such as when they have been painted shut, when they are swollen with moisture or when they are rotted or rusted. Improperly operating windows are often impossible to lock, which compromises the residents’ safety.