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6 simple steps to replacing your home windows

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6 simple steps to replacing your home windows

Some homeowners compare selecting windows for the entire house at once, with choosing their wardrobe for the next 10 years in a random day in September, except that the first process is more stressful. Why? Because windows are used for more than 10 years. Most of the homeowners keep them forever.

It’s overwhelming to choose windows and doors because they can become a source of energy loss. In Canada’s climate, you can lose even 35 per cent energy through windows and doors, and this leads to high energy bills. Canadian homeowners should choose high-efficient models because they can boost a house’s energy efficiency and save on energy bills. Energy-efficient windows are 40 per cent more efficient than traditional models.

Here are a few guidelines that make home windows replacement simple.

Decide what window style suits your home’s style

Windows do more than saving energy, they influence the aesthetics of a home. Carefully select the appearance of the windows because they must blend with the style of the property.

The architecture of the building usually influences the style of the windows and doors. If you match the style of the windows with the one of the house, they will complement its design no matter its age.

Colonial buildings often feature double-hung windows. Most homeowners prefer them because they open and close with two operating sashes. Double-hung windows are easy to clean and suit various architectures, so they’re a safe option for a homeowner who doesn’t like to experiment.

Speciality shaped windows from window manufacturers like Panes work great for modern buildings. Homeowners who want to add extra character to their buildings choose geometric or speciality shaped windows.

You can upgrade all models with decorations to add them a touch of uniqueness.

Select the material of the frame

The material of the frame determines the type of maintenance the windows need over time, so you need to decide which one you prefer before choosing the style of the windows.

If you want high-quality windows that require little maintenance, opt for vinyl windows. They’re the best option for a homeowner who is afraid that termites will damage the windows. Vinyl windows don’t rot, peel or warp, so they are durable and could last a lifetime.

The best part about window frames is that you can customizxe them as you want because they come in a great range of colours that can match any interior and exterior.

Wood windows are another option for a newly-built house. Buy they require high upkeep, so you’ll spend a lot of time maintaining and cleaning them.

Clad windows are a combination of a wood frame and another material. Often, manufacturers apply a cladding of fibreglass, vinyl or aluminium to the exterior frame to boost its durability. Some window providers sell fibreglass windows because they are less prone to expanding and contracting than clad windows. The drawback is that the homeowner has to protect the frames with hard finish paint.

Choose the glass package

The glass package directly impacts the amount of energy you save. Don’t try to save money by picking low-cost windows because they’re usually low quality and don’t have the needed tech to keep your energy bills low.

For a glass package to be efficient, it has to include some essential components.

  • Low-E glazing. Low-E is an invisible coating applied on the outside or inside of a window. The manufacturer decides where they want to apply it according to the model of windows they produce. Low-E reduces heat transfer in the building. During summer, it reflects the sunlight outside to maintain the house’s interior cool, and during winter, it allows the light to enter the house to boost warmth.
  • Argon gas. Manufacturers place an invisible and odourless gas, denser than the air between the panes of the windows to improve their thermal efficiency.
  • Dual and triple pane glass. You can find on the market dual and triple pane windows. The dual-pane windows are the traditional choice. The triple-pane glass adds an extra layer of glass to increase energy efficiency and sound-blocking features.
  • Krypton gas. Window producers fill the space between panes with invisible, odourless gas, denser than the air and argon gas to obtain high-efficient windows.

The perfect window is the result of the combination of the above components. Don’t install windows without these technologies because they’ll fail to insulate your house and lower energy bills.

If you want something special customize the windows

You build the house of your dreams, so you probably have a clear image of how you want it to look. If the windows you find on the market, don’t match the ones you pictured in your mind, collaborate with a manufacturer that encourages clients to customize windows.

For some people, buying windows from big box stores sounds convenient because they usually get better offers for standard products. But if this isn’t an option for you, work with a professional willing to personalize them. Reliable window companies engineer their products one at a time, and this guarantees that the product you receive has a precise fit inside the walls of the house.

Work only with expert contractors because the smallest mismeasurement can lead to high energy loss. This is something common for pre-made windows. The best way to prevent the problem is to choose custom windows.

Hire a reputable window company

It’s overwhelming to choose the window provider because there are countless companies you can work with. Hire an established company because you trust your house’s efficiency with them. Ask family and friends for recommendations, check online reviews, and make a list with reputable companies that operate in your region. The Internet is the best resource to find out the quality of services local window companies provide. You can find reviews on social media pages like Facebook, and even contact former clients to find out how satisfied they were with the products they received.

Hire a company that aims to improve the lives of the homeowners with energy-efficient products because they strive to provide high-quality windows.

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Iron Clad, Climate change and changing tastes have inspired a host of exterior material options

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Iron Clad, Climate change and changing tastes have inspired a host of exterior material options

Choosing exterior materials has never been an easy task for either homeowners or contractors. That’s because what goes on the outside of the house has to be functional, durable, and aesthetically pleasing as well. The challenge for manufacturers has been to keep up with evolving architectural styles while continuing to push technological boundaries to come up with materials that install faster, work better, last longer, and stay good looking.

Whether your focus is function, durability, style – or all three, there are plenty of innovative exterior materials on the market that will fit your bill. Here are a few of the latest options.

Hurricane Helpers

The durability test for exterior materials has certainly been made tougher by the impact of climate change. More severe weather of all kinds – heat, cold, wind, and rain – promises to put additional strain on exterior building materials in the coming years, and expose materials that aren’t up to the challenge. According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, back in the 1990s severe weather and wildfires caused about $100-million in structural damage each year; by 2008 that number reached $1-billion annually and has stayed at or above that level every year since but one, peaking in 2018 at $1.8-billion. Luckily, product manufacturers have taken up the challenge posed by extreme weather.

High Performance Asphalt Shingles

If you’re building in an area prone to high winds, IKO’s Nordic line of heavy-duty laminated shingles may be worth the investment. These polymer-modified asphalt shingles incorporate a number of features designed to keep them in place in hurricane-force winds up to 209 km/h as well as provide Class 4 impact protection from damaging hail. A reinforced 3.17-cm “Armourzone” nailing surface resists pull-through, while a sealant strip helps to bond shingles together to resist wind uplift, water penetration, and blow-off. Available in nine colour palettes, Nordic shingles are made to emulate wood shakes or slate tiles.

IKO.com

Storm-Rated Windows and Doors

While tornadoes and hurricanes may be a bigger issue in certain regions, persistent high winds may be reason enough to consider storm-rated windows and doors. Andersen Windows & Doors markets a line of products designed and tested to withstand the most severe coastal weather conditions, where corrosion and high winds are the norm. Andersen’s A-Series doors and windows feature corrosion-resistant composite materials, hidden structural reinforcements, and Low-E, impact-resistant glass that incorporates a reinforced plastic laminate core that helps maintain the integrity of the structure even if the glass is broken. Depending on where the home is located, certain options can be included or left out of custom orders or satisfy local code requirements.

AndersenWindows.com

Building Wrap

Of course, the quality of the building exterior isn’t just about what you can see. DuPont’s Tyvek DrainVent Rainscreen creates a 6-millimetre space behind the exterior cladding to allow for water drainage and air circulation. The honeycomb textured design of DrainVent helps protect against dampness that can lead to mould, rot, cracking, and peeling behind a range of exterior cladding materials including stucco, stone veneer, brick, wood, fibre cement, and metal panels.

DuPont.com

Waterproofing

Even the best windows and doors need quality waterproofing around the opening to function properly. TAMKO Building Products’ innovative new Flash-N-Wrap Pro waterproofing wrap is designed to create a tight seal around entryways and windows to keep air and moisture out and improve overall energy efficiency. Available in four-, six-, and nine-inch rolls, Flash-N-Wrap Pro has a treated release film on the adhesive side of the flashing that can be left exposed to the elements for up to 180 days.

Tamko.com

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