Summer is here, and you are probably letting the natural sunlight flood your interior. Windows provide your home with a well-lit and inviting environment. They let the exterior world into your home without forcing you to sacrifice your interior comforts. But as windows begin to have issues, you sacrifice a little more of that comfort every day.
Window replacements may feel like a major investment, but they are an investment worth making. New windows give your home added protection and can be a cost-effective measure for your home. As a proactive homeowner, it’s important to watch for signs that you might need replacement windows.
When Is It Time for a Replacement?
The older your windows become, the more likely it is that they need to be replaced. While many window manufacturers will claim that windows should be replaced every 20 years, the reality is that most windows will not last that long while still providing all the benefits a window should. However, there are clear signs that your current windows, regardless of age, might need to be changed out.
High Energy Bills
Once you see your bills start to increase, it’s time to look into replacing your windows. The greatest loss of energy and heat occurs through inefficient windows. This can be due to the seal around your window leaking, but often it is due to the type of window itself. Energy-efficient windows are cost-effective. They help reduce heat loss, and therefore save you money on a month to month basis.
Does the area around your window feel drafty even when it is closed? If the answer is yes, this is a clear sign something is wrong. Inefficient windows will leak more heat and energy than energy-efficient windows. But oftentimes, a window is drafty because it is broken or not properly sealed.
This is an important item to fix before the cold fall and winter breezes start. As the cold winter winds begin to blow, you are going to lose a great deal of comfort within your walls unless you have the protection of new windows.
Too Much Street Noise
Excess noise inside your home is a big no! Subpar windows or windows with broken or improper seals will let too much outside noise into your home. You don’t want to hear every car drive by your house, and you don’t have to! If you hear too much street noise, you may need to replace your windows. Energy-efficient windows are typically insulated with argon gas which provides added insulation and decreases noise traffic in your home.
Leaks, Breaks, or Rot in the Frames
Moisture can make a mess of your home. When broken, windows are a weak point in your home’s defense that can allow excess water to penetrate. When not sealed correctly, wooden frames begin to rot, deteriorating the integrity of the window structure. If you notice excessive amounts of condensation continually forming between the glass layers of your windows, you may need to check their frames for cracks.
Won’t Move or Lock
When the mechanisms in your window no longer work, the windows can no longer properly do their jobs. Windows are the easiest points of entry for intruders, and not having a working lock only adds to that. Not to mention it is simply an annoyance to your life if your window sashes can no longer move up or down. When your windows stop working with ease, it’s time to consider replacing them.
Desirable New Look
Sometimes you should opt for a window replacement simply because you want to give your home an update. If you are updating other parts of your exterior, new windows are the next step to truly elevate the look of your home. There are a wide range of window styles and material to help you achieve the look you want. New windows typically fetch a 75% return on investment at resale, making them cost effective as well.
What to Look for in a Replacement Window
Installing new windows provides an opportunity to update the look of your home, give it added protection, and increase its eco-friendly nature. Oftentimes, homeowners don’t know what to look for in replacement windows, and if you feel that same way, don’t worry. Just begin with what you like. There are a variety of styles to choose from, so take time to figure out what will enhance the look of your home.
When you know what style of window you like, look for something that is energy efficient. You will want to watch for a window with a high R-value (good heat resistance), Low U-factor (less heat loss), and low emissivity (redirecting heat to its intended destination). Don’t be afraid to ask your contractor or local home improvement store for help.
Lastly, look for a frame that is durable and low maintenance. While sturdy, wooden frames must be resealed or repainted regularly to keep rotting at bay. Vinyl does not need the added maintenance but is less sturdy. We recommend a fiberglass frame. Fiberglass needs little maintenance and is durable and weather resistant.
An Investment in Peace of Mind
When you are plagued with one or more of the issues above, it is time for an update. At Lifetime Exteriors, we offer a variety of window brands and replacements to give your home exactly what it needs. Our team has been helping Portland area homeowners, update their windows for more than 10 years, so we can answer your questions, give you a seamless installation, and restore trust in your home.
We want you to love the home you’re in for a lifetime. Get a free estimate today by calling us at (503) 719-6644.