Winter is in full-swing with below-freezing temperatures at night that are likely to keep your family huddle indoors. Add wind to the mix and you will probably start to notice how well (or poorly) the windows work around your house. Over time, window seals, sashes and frames age and become less efficient at keeping cold air out in the winter. The good news, however, is that you get back much of your investment on replacement windows through energy savings and increased home value.
Choosing the right window system depends on how much of the window needs replacing. The experts at Atkinson’s Mirror & Glass are happy to work with you to evaluate your existing problems. There are multiple different window components to consider for replacement: sash replacements, sash replacements in a unitary frame and “prime windows,” or full window units with structural frames and sills like those used in new construction.
- If you see signs of water damage or rot in the window framing, you’ll probably want to opt for new prime windows.
- If the frames are solid and intact, you may be able to get away with simply replacing the sash.
- If you notice condensation or a “foggy” appearance on the glass pane of your windows, it is likely a sign of a blown window seal. These cases can sometimes be fixed by replacing just the glass pane and seal, instead of the entire frame.
Different types of replacement windows operate differently, and thus have different ratings for air leakage:
Awning. Hinge at the top and open away from the home. Because the sash closes by pressing against the frame, they generally have lower air leakage than sliding windows.
Casement. Hinge at the sides like a door. Like awning windows, they generally have lower air leakage rates than sliding windows because the sash closes by pressing against the frame.
Fixed. Fixed panes don’t open. When installed properly, they are airtight, but are not suitable in places where window ventilation is desired.
Hopper. Hinge at the bottom and open to the top, and are typically used in basements. Like both awning and casement, they generally have lower air leakage rates.
Single- and double-hung. Both sashes slide vertically in a double-hung window. Only the bottom sash slides upward in a single-hung window. These sliding windows generally have higher air leakage rates than projecting or hinged windows.
Single- and double-sliding. Sliding windows operate horizontally along a plastic or metal track. Like single- and double-hung windows, they generally have higher air leakage rates than projecting or hinged windows.
(image from energy.gov)
Atkinson’s Mirror and Glass has been in the business of improving homes and businesses for over 60 years, which means we have handled just about any window problem you could imagine. Since the company first began in 1951, Atkinson’s has been a pioneer in introducing innovative glass and window products to the Idaho marketplace. In 1959, we introduced the original Winter-Seal aluminum window line. Thirty years later we were instrumental in ushering in the new era of vinyl-framed windows. We continue to develop glass, mirror and window technologies for their application and suitability in the ever-changing Idaho marketplace.
Give us a call today at (208)375-3762 to set up an appointment for us to assess how we can help make your windows a point of pride for your home.