Many homeowners think DIY home improvement projects are better because it saves them money and gives them a sense of pride. The reality is that some remodeling projects are better left to the professionals. After all, expert contractors have the right skills, tools, and experience to handle tasks that are difficult and time-consuming.
Professional window contractors have all the latest industry knowledge. They will know about the best brands with technology to help homeowners. Choosing the type of window or windows for your home is much easier with the help of a window expert.
If your home needs new windows, you might be considering whether it would be better to get rid of your old windows and install new ones on your own or to have a professional do the job. In most cases, you’re better off hiring a reputable replacement window professional.
DIY vs. Professional Window Replacement
Home improvement projects can increase the value of your home, make it more comfortable, and prepare it for the coming season. Windows are some of the most significant elements of your home. They can influence the way your home performs in terms of beauty, comfort, and energy efficiency.
Installing new windows takes expertise and experience, however, along with a tried and tested process, which is why window replacement should not be done by a novice. Replacing windows involves specific steps requiring the skills of a window specialist.
- Pre-installation: Taking custom measurements to ensure a perfect fit
- Protecting the home and preparing the work area
- Removing old windows
- Performing frame repairs, if necessary
- Preparing and cleaning the opening
- Installing replacement windows
- Sealing and insulating the windows
- Ensuring windows open and close with no issues
- Applying trims
- Cleaning the work area
You may think you can pull off replacing windows on your own, but window replacement is not as easy as it looks. It requires accuracy, precision, and patience to do a successful job. Other reasons to hire a professional include:
1. Save Time
It will take more time for someone with little or no experience to complete a single-window replacement project. You would have to spend extra time learning the process, applying the right techniques, and purchasing the necessary tools. An expert already has the required skills and tools, allowing them to do the job in a timely manner the first time.
Anything that involves potentially hazardous situations should be left to a professional. When it comes to window replacement, material mishandling and equipment misuse can result in major problems. A reputable professional, on the other hand, never goes into a project without the right preparation and knowledge. They are also equipped with the right protective gear to ensure everyone’s safety in the work area.
3. Obtaining Permits
Many homeowners aren’t familiar with the different permits required to carry out a window replacement project. Experts, on the other hand, know which types of permits are needed and the process required to obtain them. You can trust a professional to do the pre-planning and still complete the project on time.
4. Access to Quality And Custom Products
Standard ready-made windows can be bought at your local hardware store. These are not customized and may not fit. Professional window contractors have access to high-quality and custom windows made by the country’s top manufacturers. This means no matter the style, color, or size window you’re looking for, you’re sure to get the right options for your home.
5. Superior Craftsmanship
Improperly installed windows are drafty, less energy-efficient, and may result in damage. Professionals know the techniques to form a proper seal and carry out a seamless installation, ensuring that your windows work properly and look even better. They’re also trained to recognize other issues with drywall, insulation, or the window frame that may affect the replacement.
6. Warranty Protection
Manufacturers typically grant exclusive warranties only when their products are installed by their certified contractors. Professional installation may also come with a workmanship warranty that guarantees the quality of service. If there are any problems with the finished project, the company will take responsibility and repair the damage.
If you’re installing windows by yourself, you have no such guarantee. Plus, DIY window installation can also count as unauthorized modifications and void the manufacturer’s warranties on your new windows.
Top Signs It’s Time to Replace Your Windows
If it seems like your energy bill increases each month, it’s likely your windows are not functioning as they should. Replacing the windows in your home with energy-efficient replacement windows can help lower your heating and cooling costs, which will save you money each month. Replacing your windows can also improve the security of your home with a stronger glass and advanced locking systems.
With home improvement projects being costly and time-consuming, it’s easy to put off replacement home windows until completely necessary. Here are signs to look for that will let you know your windows are failing.
- If your windows provide little protection from the sounds of the outdoors, they may not be sealed correctly or were poorly made to begin with. Double- or triple-pane glass windows insulated with Argon or Krypton gas can decrease outdoor noise, which is especially helpful if you live in a busy neighborhood or on a busy road.
- When you feel a draft, even when your windows are closed, it is a sure sign new windows are needed. A drafty window can drastically change the overall temperature of your home, causing your HVAC system to work twice as hard to keep up with the fluctuating temperatures.
- If your window frames are soft to the touch and chipped, they may be already beyond repair. Soft window frames indicate rot and water infiltration. It’s possible they may start sagging.
- Windows that were not installed correctly tend to develop balance issues, making the windows challenging to open and close. Rust or rotting can also cause difficulty when opening a window. If your windows do not close properly, you may not be able to lock them, which can impact the safety and energy efficiency of your home.
- If you notice that your windows are clouding between the layers of glass, it means that your seals have failed, allowing moisture between the glass panes. Once the seals fail, any insulating gas used to make the window energy efficient is now gone.
Be Informed Before Hiring a Window Contractor
Replacing your windows is a big project and one that’s best left up to the professionals. Before you sign on the dotted line, here are some questions you need to ask.
Are you licensed and insured?
Utilizing a licensed contractor gives you some protection should a problem arise. The same goes for insurance, which includes liability, workers’ compensation, and property damage insurance. These questions are to protect you as a homeowner, as well as your contractor.
Can I get an itemized estimate?
Itemized estimates allow you to see exactly what expenses are included for your project. A reputable contractor will have no problem with giving you this breakdown of expenses, which can come in handy if there are any disputes down the line.
How much time will my project take?
Specialized windows can take quite a while to be delivered, so projects can stretch over a few months before they’re completed. Knowing exactly when your windows will be out of commission is a good idea, especially if you’re coming up on a seasonal change. Knowing a general timeline can also give you some peace of mind once your project is in process.
Is there a specific window type or brand you recommend?
Some contractors don’t like working with certain brands of windows, and others prefer to work only with a few types. Get these preferences upfront, with detailed reasons as to why the contractor does or does not recommend a brand. This information, from people who spend every day dealing with and installing windows, can be helpful information when selecting the windows for your home.
What type of warranty do you offer on your installation?
Regardless of how well-installed your windows are, problems can arise weeks or months later. Get the details, in writing, of your contractor’s warranty policy in case you need it. Also, be sure to retain the contractor’s contact information in a safe place.
How will I handle service issues after installation is complete?
If you notice drafting on one window once winter sets in, you need to know whether your contractor considers that an issue that’s covered under warranty or if you need to find someone else to remedy your problem.
Does my project require a permit?
The answer to this question will vary depending on where you live. Some municipalities require a permit, others don’t. If your contractor is local, they should know right away whether you will need a permit and should obtain it themselves. It’s best to verify your contractor’s answer with your local code enforcement office to avoid fines or delays.
Trust the Professionals
Improperly installed windows can lead to higher HVAC bills and expensive future repairs, while inexperienced workmanship can diminish your home’s value and curb appeal. With years of experience installing windows, the experts at Banner Construction can handle your replacement window needs.When you choose Banner Construction, you can enjoy peace of mind that the job will be done right the first time.