Buying Windows Soon? Here’s 3 Things to Look Out For
Firstly, everyone knows the feeling of getting the ol’ run-around–especially in the home improvement industry and buying windows. When customers are ready to take the first step toward any home improvement project, they’ll be jumping through hurdles immediately.
“How much do the materials cost?”
“Who can I buy windows from?”
“Who do I buy materials from?”
“How much am I paying vs. how much the materials are worth?”
“How much about what I’ve researched is gimmick vs. how much is good advice”
These questions and so many more have probably crossed the buyers mind if they’ve ever begun a home improvement project. Since J-Tech is a in the business of home improvement and buying windows, we’re here to help customers through questions like these! Today’s blog post will focus on what to be aware of to keep you from buying windows that aren’t the best quality.
Note: Homeowners NEVER have to worry about any of these things with J-Tech Windows! We use Triple Pane technology for some of the highest-quality windows on the market, straight from Window Depot.
“We have preferred materials, but if there’s a specific material that you want to use, we’ll make sure we use the best quality products we can get our hands on.”
Beware of Double-Pane Windows with a Lack of Insulation
Insulating glass, often referred to as “IG,” “double-pane” or “Thermopane” glass, was developed to create a more energy-efficient window. Glass itself is a lousy insulator; a single-pane window has an R-value of about 1. (R-value is the measure of a material’s ability to retard the flow of heat.) A standard insulating glass pane has an R-value of about 2, a somewhat wimpy number compared to the R-11 value of a 2x4 wall, but still greater than a single-pane window, even with a storm window on it. The R-value is greater, not because there are two panes of glass, but because there is air or gas sealed between the two panes of glass. With the addition of different gases (like argon and krypton) and films, extra panes of glass and coatings (like “low-E”) between the panes, the insulating values can reach R-6 or greater.
J-Tech’s Triple Pane windows come with–you guessed it–three panes of glass, creating space for two chambers full of Argon gas! Since our contractors are paid hourly and not by commission, when they come to install your new triple pane windows, they’re going to spend as long as it takes to make sure the job is done right–installing the windows in a way that keeps your home as insulated as possible. In addition, OptiGas verifies all of our windows to be of the strongest quality.
Beware of Windows made with Inferior Materials
In recent decades, window manufacturers have begun using more rot-resistant materials as alternatives to wood, including aluminum, vinyl, pultruded fiberglass, or some combination of these materials.
Fiberglass and aluminum are likely to be the most durable choices. From an energy perspective, fiberglass is far preferable to aluminum.
Also, aluminum windows are highly conductive; since they don’t insulate as well as vinyl, wood, or fiberglass frames, they are rarely appropriate for an energy-efficient house. (Remember, just because a window has aluminum cladding doesn’t mean that the window has aluminum frames. In most cases, aluminum-clad windows are made of wood.)
Foam-filled fiberglass frames perform better than other materials. Foam-filled vinyl frames are a close second, followed by wood frames. Some manufacturers offer composite frames made from a variety of materials; if these include a thermal break, they can perform well.
J-Tech uses a variety of different materials in our windows, depending on what your project calls for. We have preferred materials, but if there’s a specific material that you want to use, we’ll make sure we use the best quality products we can get our hands on.
Beware of Windows made with Improper Measurements
Improper window measurements will leave you incredibly unhappy when buying windows. The entire purpose of window treatments is to cover the window. So unexpected “gaps” are appallingly obvious once the product is installed in the home. Even small gaps (1/8 of an inch) are noticeable and will decrease your satisfaction with your window treatments.
There are simple guidelines for buying windows you can follow to ensure you have the basic measurements you need to get started. You may find that the product you eventually end up with requires additional or slightly altered measurements, but starting the process off with the appropriate basic measurements is important. You will use them to gather estimates on pricing and unless the product you choose to purchase requires “special instruction” measurements you’ll be ready to go with your exact measurements when it’s time to buy.
If you aren’t sure what type of window treatment you need, take two separate sets of measurements. One measurement would be for window treatments that mount inside a window frame/casing. Your second measurement would be for a window treatment that mounts to the wall above the window.
J-Tech customizes each window to fit exactly the way it should, right on the jobsite. There’s no need to worry about improper measurements with us!
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