Window replacement is one of the most cost-efficient improvement projects, making it highly beneficial to homeowners in many ways. For instance, not only does it help enhance a home’s curb appeal and interior appearance, but it can also help improve energy efficiency and comfort no matter the season.
However, just like with all home improvement projects, window replacement benefits can be offset by mistakes in planning and execution. In this post, we’ll take a look at the common window replacement mistakes you should avoid and the things you can do to prevent them from hindering your project’s success.
Common Window Replacement Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
Window replacement is an investment. There should be no room for mistakes and the first step to avoiding them is learning about them. Below are some of the common mistakes that plague window replacement projects:
- Choosing the wrong type of replacement window
- Using the exact same window style and type as the previous units
- Deciding based on cost, not on features and quality
- Doing window replacement yourself
- Failing to consider weather and climate in your area
- Overlooking the home’s architectural design
- Ignoring security concerns
- Not hiring a reputable and trusted window contractor
Fortunately, it’s possible to avoid the usual pitfalls. Here are some tips you can keep in mind to avoid window replacement mistakes:
Time It Right
While some people say windows can be replaced any time of the year, choose to replace when the weather is right for best installation conditions. Late spring and early fall when the weather is at its mildest are the best times, as temperatures during these months are neither too hot nor too cold.
Why wait for mild weather? While your windows are being replaced, it is likely that there will be a moment when your old windows will be removed but your new ones will not be installed yet, exposing your home’s interior. So, it’s best to avoid having any work done during hot, cold or rainy periods.
Furthermore, it will be easier for the window replacement crew to work and finish the job under favorable weather conditions. They will be able to finish the project within the agreed-upon time frame as there will be no weather-related delays. Installed right, your new windows are guaranteed to perform their best.
Establish a Budget
The quality of the replacement windows you buy will depend largely on your budget. When setting one, determine how many windows you need replaced immediately and have an estimator or consultant from your trusted window company come in and discuss with you available options, factoring in pricing and other important factors that will affect the cost of the project.
In some cases, how your original windows were installed must also be considered to properly anticipate any problems with tear-out and install preparation. Depending on the difficulty level of the removal and installation process, the price of window replacement contracts may differ.
Hire a Reliable Contractor
If you have been considering making window replacement a DIY job, abandon that thought, stat! While it’s understandable that some homeowners lean towards DIY projects to save money, this idea cannot be applied to something as crucial as window replacement.
Hiring a professional window contractor is the only way to go if you want to ensure window replacement success. Contractors can offer the assurance that the job will get done right the first time, in the shortest time possible. It’s true that taking the DIY route may cost less upfront but you run the risk of making mistakes if you don’t have the right skills and experience–mistakes that cost money to resolve. Additionally, working with a professional means getting back to your daily grind as soon as , making it moreconvenient for you and your family.
Know Your Buying Options
Finally, you should know what you’re getting into. Learn about your options by:
- Discussing available options with your window installer. Set expectations from the onset. Discuss window type and material options, and ask about the contractor’s installation service to determine what it includes, such as warranties and guarantees.
- Keeping in mind always that the lowest bid isn’t always the best fit. During your search for a window contractor, you may find yourself getting bids from more than one company. Do not automatically go for the lowest bid. Instead, ask for references first and see to it that bonds, licenses and other legal requirements are met. Make sure, too, that you’re comfortable talking with the installer about job details.
- Demanding to sign a contract. Never rely on oral promises. Get everything documented on paper and signed to protect both parties.
- Keeping upfront deposit amounts within minimum requirements. Different states have different requirements for down payments or deposits but keep your down payment at the minimum required amount.
- Pay for the job only when you’re satisfied with everything. Once the new windows have been installed and you’re satisfied by their looks and function, only then should you pay for the complete amount.
Window replacement mistakes can be easily avoided if you know the right things to do. By following the tips discussed here and working with a reliable window contractor, you’ll surely get the most out of your investment.
Lance Schepps is the president and general manager of Renewal by Andersen® of Los Angeles. Committed to helping clients make their homes more energy-efficient, comfortable and beautiful, he believes the first step to achieving this is to make smart window replacement decisions. For more tips and updates from Lance, check out the company blog!