The Saying, ‘You Get What You Pay For,’ Couldn’t Be More True When It Comes To Shopping For Replacement Windows.
Though at the same time, that doesn’t mean you have to shell out endless greenbacks at a big box retailer.
BY JOHN KOLBASKA, OWNER
There’s a difference between price and the value you’re receiving. We’re going to go over these points so you can have a better understanding of what to be aware of when choosing the right replacement window contractor.
Stay Away From $189-$249 Replacement Windows
Don’t assume you’re getting a deal and should only be paying this much for replacement windows. There’s a reason why they’re so cheap. It’s because they’re not high-quality. These windows don’t come standard with Low-E and argon gas to help keep your home temperature regulated. They’re clear glass.
Argon gas controls condensation, which is residue that forms in between the glass panes and can’t be cleaned. It can also form in the center of the glass inside your home. In this case, you’ll see a rainbow. This means there’s an argon gas leak. All of these are signs of seal failure, which means unwanted air is leaking into your home.
What also comes with these packages is a mediocre installation. Your windows are only as good as how they are installed. We can’t stress enough, even if you buy a top-notch product, if it’s not installed correctly, you’re going to have problems, and you’ll find yourself replacing those same windows within the next 5-10 years.
You should only have to replace the windows in your home once. There’s no reason why you should have to do it a second time around. If you are, you better not be going back to the same contractor.
Installation Is Equally Important As The Replacement Windows You Purchase
The following are the necessary steps that should be taken in the proper installation of replacement windows. This also varies on whether it’s a pocket or a full frame replacement as there are additional steps.
- Remove existing window
- Install new window in opening
- Use right amount of screws depending on size of window
- Square and level it off with shims to make sure window operates properly
- Install flashing properly on exterior
- Install drip cap on top of flashing
- Apply spray foam insulation
- Use high-quality caulk for interior and silicone for exterior
- Install finish moldings
- Clean up properly
- Haul away all debris
What these $189-$249 contractors tend to omit are insulating your windows, which is the key step in the installation process. They won’t apply foam insulation, which helps seal and protect the window from drafts. They won’t use a high-quality caulk on the exterior and interior of the window. They won’t use flashing to protect the window from the elements like water that can leak into your home as well as the wall cavity, which could lead to wood rot and possibly mold.
Another important factor with these cheap contractors is they’ll give you ‘a la carte’ pricing, meaning everything that should be included isn’t. You’ll pay extra for the installation of flashing, insulation, moldings — even the clean up. Some companies may charge for the haul away per window and may not leave your home spick and span. That’s just plain wrong.
The Big Box Home Centers Fall Short On Service.
When’s the last time you had problems with your internet service provider and you found yourself trying to get a hold of customer service to find out the issue? You’re likely waiting on hold for several minutes and by the time you finally talk to someone, they give you the runaround or tell you a bunch of things to try, but don’t work. You may even be transferred to multiple technicians. How do you feel after you hang up the phone?
Symptoms and actions may include:
- Knots in your stomach
- Wanting to punch a wall
- Questioning why you went with this company in the first place
This is what you’ll experience at many big box retailers. It’s impossible to get a hold of the right person, and you’re dealing with representatives who are lowest on the totem pole. The pluses to going with local contractors, are you shouldn’t have problems getting a hold of the person in charge. They heavily rely on referrals and want your business.
Other pros to going local are these companies will take care of you right away should something go wrong. If your window is leaking or malfunctioning, they’ll fix it right away and won’t give you a hundred reasons why they can’t. Here at The Men With Tools Home Remodeling, we follow up at the 6- and 12-month mark to make sure everything is in order. We also offer a lifetime warranty on the installation giving you peace-of-mind. The last thing you want to deal with is dishing out more money to a contractor who already installed your windows. Why should you be paying them again to fix a problem they created?
Replacement windows shouldn’t be a waste of money, they should be an investment. Those ridiculously low-priced companies won’t take care of you and will likely disappear at the first sign of a problem while the larger, more expensive companies are simply taking advantage of you because of their name, and that’s not right either. It’s your right to shop around until you find the best value in a window installation company.
Take a look at The Men With Tools. We offer high quality wood windows from Andersen and vinyl windows from Soft-Lite. Give us a call today 347-815-4151
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