Windows serve a couple of important purposes in your home. For one thing, they allow you a view of the outside world. But more importantly, they are a point of ingress for daylight and fresh air. That said, the windows in your home may not be serving you well. If you have an older home, for example, your windows might be too small or too infrequent, making your home feel dark and enclosed. Or they might be in a state of disrepair that is both unsightly and non-functional. And even newer homes can feature windows that are less than ideal on the energy efficiency front. The point is that you may be looking to replace problematic windows or even cut holes in the wall to install larger or brand new windows. And there are a few things you’ll need to know before you begin the process.
First you need to think about what you hope to accomplish by replacing windows in your home. If only a couple are having problems with leaks or drafts, for example, you may not need to shell out the dough to replace every window in your home. But if you want to improve overall energy efficiency by upgrading from wooden casings to vinyl and opting for double-paned products instead of the single-pane windows you currently have, then replacing them all might be in your best interest. Knowing your goals is an important step, especially when it comes to keeping down costs, or alternately, paying more initially with the knowledge that your long-term savings will offset the expense.
From there, you need to select windows that fit the architecture and aesthetic of your home. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to forego modern windows, but you might want to look for retro styles that offer the functionality you crave so that they more seamlessly blend in with your overall structure while still providing for a comfortable and energy efficient home interior. From there, it’s just a matter of removing the old windows and putting in the new ones.
Of course, this is where it gets tricky for most homeowners, especially those that haven’t replaced windows before. Luckily, you’re not the first DIYer to try your hand at this home improvement project, and there are a lot of resources to help you do it right. You could start by taking a class offered by your local hardware store – try calling Lowe’s or Home Depot, both of which provide a variety of home improvement courses. Or you could simply pull up some video tutorials online. There is no shortage of experts willing to offer the wealth of their knowledge and experience for your benefit (not to mention for free).
And of course, you could approach the professionals at Lyndhurst Lumber Inc, a glass retailer, or even a window outlet to get advice and have your installation questions answered. But if you get in over your head, don’t hesitate to call in a contractor or other expert to help you finish the job. It’s almost certainly worth spending a few extra bucks to ensure that your new windows are properly seated and that they’ll perform their function for many years to come.