12 Questions to Ask During Your Window-Replacement Consultation

12 Questions to Ask During Your Window-Replacement Consultation
  • Opening Intro -

    Most home improvement projects, no matter how straightforward, will take a considerable amount of your time and money.

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This is especially true in window replacement, an investment that seems simple enough, but actually contributes greatly to your home’s beauty, comfort and energy efficiency. If you want to make the most of it, you should make sure to cover all the bases, including participating in a window-replacement consultation.

Why? Because a window-replacement consultation offers the perfect opportunity to ask any questions you might have about the project, the products and the installer themselves. Here are a few good examples to help you get started.

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About Your Window-Replacement Contractor

  • 1: Are you licensed?

    First things first: ask about your prospective contractor’s credentials. These include proof of state licensing, which makes them eligible to perform window-replacement work on your area. By choosing a licensed contractor, you’re sure the installation will follow local building codes and safety regulations. Pro Tip: Check with your state-licensing office to verify. You’ll want to make sure the work is legitimate, after all.

  • 2: Do you carry insurance?

    Don’t overlook insurance, including workers’ compensation and liability coverage, when working with a window-replacement contractor. These essentials ensure you and your investment remain protected should anything go wrong during the project. Accidents and work injuries can happen and choosing an insured contractor helps you avoid potential litigation and additional costs.

window replacement

Look for your window contractor on leading trade sites like the Better Business Bureau or Angie’s List to see if they have high ratings and glowing reviews from past clients.

  • 3: What manufacturer certifications do you have?

    There are many advantages to working with a manufacturer-certified contractor. You not only get access to higher quality window products, you’re also sure the installation will comply with the brand’s specifications. You’ll benefit as well from solid warranties, adding an extra layer of protection to your investment.

  • 4: How long have you been in business?

    Depth of experience is important. Make sure your prospective contractor has already worked on a large number of window replacements over the years. This ensures your new units are properly installed, which means they can deliver the sturdy and long-lasting performance you’ve come to expect.

    Additionally, choosing an experienced window contractor reduces the potential for mistakes and the expensive task of correcting them. Another tip? Ask For a list of references so you can learn  about the quality of the contractor’s work from previous clients.

About Your Replacement Windows

  • 5: Which framing material do they use?

    You probably already know the longevity and performance of your replacement windows will depend on the framing material. For this reason, ask your window contractor what materials they use. They may offer wood units, which are known for their strength and insulating value. The downsides, however, are the material’s propensity for rot and moisture damage, plus its high-maintenance requirements. They may also carry vinyl windows, which are cost-effective and versatile, but warp easily when exposed to extreme  weather changes.

    You might want a window company that offers composite windows instead. These replacement units can combine the better features of other framing materials, including wood’s durability and insulating properties, plus vinyl’s maintenance-free performance. Composite windows don’t change shape as much under extreme heat or cold. They also keep more durable seals that prevent significant energy loss.

  • 6: What about glass options?

    Higher quality replacement windows now come with advanced, modified low-emissivity (low-E) glass. This helps reduce the amount of radiant heat entering your home via the windows, allowing for a more comfortable space, minus the high energy costs. Some low-E glass includes technology that protects your home’s interior from fading due to sun exposure.

window installation

BEAUTY AND EFFICIENCY:
Make sure your choice of replacement windows combine both good looks and energy performance.

  • 7: Are the window options energy-efficient?

    When choosing new windows, homeowners should take energy efficiency into account. You’ll know your replacement windows are energy-efficient when they feature the white and blue ENERGY STAR label. This means they have passed stringent energy-performance tests. To compare the energy-saving value of different windows, you may also look for the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) label, which comes in black and white. It will show you the stats on how a window rates according to U-factor, solar heat gain, air leakage and visible transmittance.

  • 8: How do I customize my replacement windows?

    Of course, you shouldn’t overlook beauty when looking for high-quality replacement windows. Ask your window contractor about the extensive customization options they offer. For instance, their products should come in different styles, colors combinations, hardware options and finishes, with a variety of grille patterns. All of these options make it easier to match your new windows with your home’s architectural style and exterior color palette. This, in turn, helps your home make a bigger impression from the curb

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  • 9: What warranties are included with them?

    As mentioned above, window warranty can help add further protection to your investment.

    A solid warranty should provide coverage for framing material and glass, plus other window components and accessories, for a substantial time period.

About the Window-Replacement Process

  • 10: Will the project need a permit?

    There may be a need to apply for a building permit, , but this will depend on your location. If so, make sure your prospective contractor won’t have qualms about getting them. Building permits ensure the work is up to code, which helps keep you and your home safe in case of emergencies.

window consultation

THE RIGHT QUESTIONS, THE RIGHT ANSWERS:
To get the results you expect for your window replacement, don’t hesitate to ask your contractor about the quality of the products they offer.

  • 11: How do I prepare my home?

    Before your window replacement, make sure the area around your windows are clear of blinds or curtains, and other decorative items. Furniture and other large fixtures  that can hinder access to the window installation area should be removed as well. As an added measure, take down light fixtures, paintings and other items from your walls. Additionally, small children and pets should be kept away from the work area for their safety.

  • 12: How will you protect my home?

    Your window replacement contractor should also take proactive measures to ensure your home and property remain free from unnecessary mess and damage. For example, they should use drop cloths around the work area and use drop shoes so they don’t track dirt into your home. They should also dispose of the old windows carefully, while taking care of the after-work cleanup.

These are just some of the important questions you can ask during a window-replacement consultation. With them, you can ensure the replacement units you choose will deliver the high-quality performance you expect, just as you’ll be sure your installer can provide a smooth and worry-free process. Should you have other questions or concerns, however, don’t hesitate to let your window contractor know.

Author Bio:
With more than 12 years of experience in the home improvement industry, Robert Jackson continues to provide Atlanta homeowners with high-quality window replacement solutions. He has been certified by the Building Performance Institute, an indication of the extensive training and experience he brings to work every day. When he is not leading the Renewal by Andersen® of Atlanta team, he enjoys spending time with his wife, two little girls and the family dog. His hobbies include woodworking and photography. Check out the company blog for updates from Robert!

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