6 Lessons in Window Replacement: Getting the Best Value for Your Dollar




When was the last time you learned a lesson? Whether it was days or years ago, we all can benefit from learning useful information in all aspects of life.

When it comes to window replacement, there are many lessons that homeowners can learn in terms of quality, product selection, price, and more.

Before you jump into the journey of updating your old windows, consider the following lessons:

Lesson #1: Never Settle for the Lowest Quote

We get it—you’re on a budget. However, it’s highly recommended that you don’t make your selection based on the lowest replacement window quotes given to you. 

Not only do the price of replacement windows vary from company to company, so does quality. A bottom-dollar window quote may signify a subpar product.

While it’s tempting to go with the cheap quote and ride out the next 5 to 7 years with low quality windows, you’ll likely spend more money this way. This is especially the case if the windows come with a barebones warranty, or even no warranty at all.

The best advice? Try choosing the quote that is neither the highest or the lowest. Somewhere in the middle can offer the best value for your money.

Lesson #2: Don’t Get Tricked by Gimmicks

Unfortunately, even under regulation, gimmicky claims still exist in the world of replacement windows.

To help combat exaggerated claims, The Federal Trade Commission enforces its Green Guides, which was issues in 1992, 1996, 1998, and 2012. This guide was established to ensure that environmentally friendly products are not marketed using exaggerated energy-saving claims.

The most recent upgraded guide outlines how marketers can use product certifications and seals of approval, claims about materials, and renewable and carbon offset claims.

What does this mean to you? It means you’ll need to educate yourself on how replacement windows save energy. You’ll also need to have realistic expectations when it comes to performance.

For example, while new windows will reduce your utility bills, think along the lines of up to 25% or 30%.

Person Installing Window

Lesson #3: Think Twice About Off-the-Shelf Windows

When you can walk into a big box home improvement store and buy windows straight from the shelf, why wouldn’t you take this approach? Your windows are already manufactured, which cuts your waiting time down by weeks. All you need to do is pop them into your wall and you’re good to go—right?

This is one of the worst ideas homeowners can consider when it comes to window replacement.

First, these windows are mass produced. The best windows for energy savings are custom made and sized precisely for your window.

Next, you won’t be able to enjoy the limitless combination of window styles, color options, decorative glass, an grids. While there’s nothing necessarily wrong with a white double hung window, you won’t have much control when it comes to aesthetics.

Lastly, the quality of these windows might not be up to par when compared to custom windows. You’ll need to think about the quality of the vinyl and how long the windows will last once you install them in your home.

Lesson #4: Professional Window Installation is Exceptionally Important

When the exciting step of choosing the style of your windows is over, the next step is installation. While this isn’t the most glamorous aspect of window replacement, it’s important to leave this step to the professionals.

Professional window installation ensures that the process is properly handled from start to finish. Even a small mistake can add up to major problems for homeowners, such as air leaks or even moisture damage.

Professional window installers are highly experienced at their craft. They play a major role in the performance of your window through installation. Even the most expensive replacement windows won’t save energy if they are incorrectly installed. 

UWD Installer Installing Window

Lesson #5: Consider Maintenance

One of the joys of homeownership is maintenance. From your roof to your basement, there aren’t many areas of your home that are truly maintenance free.

When you’re choosing your window frame material, keep maintenance requirements in the back of your head.

Wood windows are the hardest to maintain. They require sanding, staining, painting, and treatment to protect against moisture. There is nothing worse than dealing with wood windows that are damaged from the elements, especially when they begin to rot. The frames can crumble away in worst-case scenarios, which compromises the structural integrity of your home.

If you don’t want to spend your days tending to your windows, the best material to choose is vinyl. Vinyl windows only require occasional cleaning with a diluted cleaning solution. Otherwise, this material is highly resistant to moisture, corrosion, termite damage, and all the other headaches that come along with wood window frames.

Lesson #6: Know Your Window Company

Know who you are working with when you buy your windows. Look for window companies that come with high ratings with the Better Business Bureau. You’ll also want to look for favorable reviews online. Ask your neighbors for referrals and look for yard signs or even billboards around town.

It’s also important that the window installation team is insured. Lack of insurance means that you may be responsible for the bill if someone gets hurt on the job. You may run into this issue if you decide to hire storm chasers when bad weather hits the area. Always ask for proof of insurance, and if you’re still skeptical you can call the insurance company to double check their claims.

UWD Installers Tough

Lesson #7: Don’t Let Lack of Knowledge Cost You Money

Going into a replacement window demonstration blindly can be a costly choice. It’s important to know your options from window styles and energy-saving features. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and never agree to a contract until you’re entirely confident of your decision.

Universal Windows Direct prides itself in educating homeowners on replacement windows and other exterior remodeling products. If you have questions or need additional guidance, reach out to us at your convenience.