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The Dos And Don'ts Of Residential Window Replacement

by Tara Pena

Installing new windows in your home is one of the best ways to improve its look and save on your annual heating and cooling costs. However, when considering window replacement, it's important you take each of these dos and don'ts into consideration.

Do: Opt for Windows with Low-E Glass

Window installation alone won't lower your cooling and heating costs if you opt to install single-pane windows. Instead, you need to install double-pane or triple-pane windows rated as Low-E. The term "Low-E" stands for glass that is rated highly for low-emissivity. This means there is a greatly reduced heat/cold transfer between the interior space and the outdoors due to a special film sandwiched between the glass panes.

Don't: Install Beautiful Windows That Don't Keep with the Original Architectural Style of Your Home

No matter how amazing windows look in the showroom, they will look horrible once installed if you don't make sure the windows you select match the original architectural style of your home. 

Imagine for a moment that you opt for sleek windows with white vinyl frames. These windows will look great in a single-family tract home in the suburbs, however, they will look hugely out of place in a historical Victorian-style home located in the center of town.

Thankfully, there are replacement windows manufactured today that will look fantastic in any style of home and your glass contractor can help steer you towards the most appropriate options. 

Do: Opt for Replacement Inserts to Reduce Sill Damage

If your home's existing window frames and sills are in good condition, then it's best to opt to remove just the glass panes with what is commonly referred to as replacement inserts. 

To install replacement inserts, your glass contractor's crew will carefully remove the old windows and then insert the new window inserts into the old frames and sills. They will caulk in the new windows and then finish them by adding trim to the interior and exterior perimeters to make them look like they were always there. 

Don't: Use Window Cleaner or Vinegar on Replacement Windows

It is vitally important you never clean double-pane or triple-pane glass with window cleaner or vinegar. Using either will result in drying of the gas seals surrounding the outside of the panes.

When the seals are damaged, the gas leaks out and then the windows fog up. Once the window gas leaks and the windows fog, they will get dirty inside and this problem isn't fixable without replacing the windows again.

Finally, failed glass panes will also crack when subjected to the freeze-thaw weather cycles in winter.

For more information, contact a window installation service in your area.