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WHEN SHOULD I REPLACE THE WINDOWS IN MY HOME?

by Oct 16, 2015

I THINK I NEED NEW WINDOWS

When is the right time and circumstance to consider replacing the windows in your home, particularly if your home isn’t all that old? This is a fairly common question that clients ask us all the time. Most folks who own a new home, or fairly new home, don’t really consider replacing their new-ish windows for at least a dozen or so years, even if they know that their windows are poorly performing builder grade windows. However, after 12 to 15 years, the age of the windows is usually not an issue for most folks, particularly if they are unhappy with their current set of windows.

So, the answer to “how soon should you consider replacing the windows” in your newer home is a bit more complex but we have some practical advice & things to consider if you are thinking about the benefits of replacement windows.

Before: Insulated Drapes blocking out excess heat and natural light

DO I PLAN ON LIVING IN MY HOME FOR A LONG TIME?

First, how long do you plan to live in your home? Generally speaking, if you plan to live in your home for at least 5-7 years, you can count on reducing your energy costs by nearly the amount it costs to install new windows. However, if you just plan to be in your home for a very short stint, replacement windows may not make economic sense.

Many of our clients tell us that they felt obligated to “tough-it-out” with their existing inefficient and lousy windows to “get their money’s worth” out of them? So, they waited an average of 12 to 15 years to replace their windows. However, if you really think about the logic behind this type of thinking, had they replaced their lousy windows early in the first couple of years, they would have enjoyed a much more comfortable home for a very long time while with substantially lower utility costs, while recouping the cost of the windows.

From a logical standpoint, the final analysis about replacement windows is very clear. If you plan to live in your home for more than 5 years, and you’re really not happy with your current windows, you should replace them as soon as possible. It makes economic sense and you’ll be able to enjoy a much more comfortable home for a very long time while drastically reducing your HVAC costs.

ARE MY WINDOWS ENERGY INEFFICIENT?

Second, Regardless of how long you plan to live in your home, if you’re bleeding energy all year round, and your home is miserably uncomfortable all the time, replacement windows may be worth the instant relief that you seek? Most people enjoy an average of 30% to 50% savings with their annual energy costs after new windows. While it’s true that you’ll enjoy much lower utility costs, new windows will provide year-round comfort so you will enjoy AND re-claim all parts of your home! No more freezing in the winter and melting in the summer!

Energy Inefficient Jalousie Windows

YEAR ROUND COMFORT IS IMPORTANT

Even if you sell your home fairly soon after new windows, your Realtor should point out the beauty and clarity of your new windows as well as the major drop in your homes energy costs. How much you can re-coup when selling is debatable, but it never hurts, especially for astute buyers who may compare homes without new windows verses yours!

Two Story Homes – Many people with 2-story homes experience the physics of trying to evenly heat and cool multi-level homes. Dual-zoned HVAC systems help with this imbalance but multi-story homes will always be difficult to evenly heat and cool at the same time. Energy efficient replacement windows cannot 100% solve this issue but they definitely help bring-about more of an equilibrium between the different levels. All of our Ringer Window surveys indicate that our clients are reporting a much easier time with keeping their multi-story homes more evenly cooled and heated, so we know it works!

Before: Too many window grids/ energy inefficient

After: Nice clean look without window grids!

There are many other reasons why people consider replacing their windows. These reasons vary, but they can be equally as important, depending on your family priorities and personal needs. Other common factors for replacing windows are:

Noise Reduction

Operability

Bigger & Brighter Views (broken fogged seals)

Function

Curb Appeal

Noise Reduction – High quality replacement windows (like our Elite 5400 Series) feature a heavier and thicker frame, along with thicker glass, making them much better at reducing outside sound and noise. Depending on where you live, and your surroundings, noise reduction can be very important. Replacement windows typically help reduce outside noise significantly in most homes. Almost without exception, our clients report that their sound reduction with our windows with double strength glass is “very noticeable”. Sound reduction is immediate and it never degrades.

Noise Reduction – High quality replacement windows (like our Elite 5400 Series) feature a heavier and thicker frame, along with thicker glass, making them much better at reducing outside sound and noise. Depending on where you live, and your surroundings, noise reduction can be very important. Replacement windows typically help reduce outside noise significantly in most homes. Almost without exception, our clients report that their sound reduction with our windows with double strength glass is “very noticeable”. Sound reduction is immediate and it never degrades.

Operability – One of the most common issues with new construction windows is balance failure. The balance system is what controls the windows operability, allowing the sash to smoothly slide up & down and remain in same place when it’s opened. When balance systems fail, windows don’t stay open, or worse, they don’t open at all. Replacement windows solve this problem and as is with Ringer Windows, our balance systems are covered under a limited lifetime warranty.

Before: Fogged Window

After: Clear View without the fogging. (Fogging is covered under Warranty!)

Bigger & Brighter (non-fogged) Views– Another common failing with new cheaper new construction windows is seal failure. Dual pane glass is sealed with a part that’s call the Spacer System. When the Spacer fails, it allows moisture inside your windows, and your views become permanently clouded or fogged. High quality replacement windows, like we make at Ringer Windows, feature a state of the art Spacer system that guaranteed never to fail. Ringer Windows are renowned for their reliability and lifetime crystal clear views.

Function – Some folks who study replacement windows fall in love with double hung windows that tilt-in for easy cleaning, while others look to reconfigure their windows for bigger views with special sash placements, etc. Regardless of all the wonderful ways we can configure new windows with different looks, styles, and functions, people sometimes simply want different function from their windows.

Curb Appeal – There’s nothing quite as important to your home’s value that it’s curb appeal. If the color, style, or lack of imagination with the original windows isn’t helping your home’s curb appeal, many folks seek to use new windows to boost their curb appeal. The efficiency, sound control, and bigger views are part of the process but sometimes, something as simple as a color change can make all the difference in the world!

I hope that this blog helps you. I am always seeking useful feedback so if anyone had any additional comments or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you! Email us at info@ringer windows.com