Replacement Glass - Owners Manual
Replacement windows are expensive and they can radically alter the look of you old house. Before you invest thousands of dollars in getting new window think about the following:
- The windows you have now were made from old-growth lumber – the trees they cut down to make the windows had been growing slowly and naturally since before the Europeans can to America. The wood is stronger, tighter grained and more durable than the second growth trees we are havesting a century later.
- If the glass in your old windows is wavy and slightly distorted, it is probably “cylinder glass”. The process for making cylinder glass was phased out in the 1960's. New glass does not have the same subtle, organic charm.
- But the real question is about saving money – right? Before you order replacement windows, ask your supplier:
- What is the payback time – that is, when will the savings from my lower energy bills equal the cost of the new windows, including the cost of installation?
- What is the expected lifespan of the new window unit? The life span of most wood sashes has not yet been reached.
- What do I have to do when a stray baseball cracks the glass in my thermal-pane window? How much does it cost to fix and who will do the work?
- Can I keep my stained glass windows? What do you charge to install my original stained glass in the new unit?
Consumer Reports studied replacement windows in their October, 2000, issue. They concluded that the only folks who would save money lived in the southern states and “even then, it would take more than 30 years of lower energy bills to pay for the new windows – without installation (costs).”
“Window Shopping”, Consumer Reports October 2000
Home Energy Magazine Online,in their September/October 1997 issue, concluded that “The difference in annual savings between renovating an old sash and replacing it with a new one was very small – retrofits saved only a few dollars.”
“Creating Windows of Energy-Saving Opportunity”, Home Energy September/October 1997
Creating Windows of Energy-Saving Opportunity
If you are interested in soundproofing your home, then spend your money on having storm windows made with laminated glass. To learn more go to :
How Soundproof Windows Work to Reduce Noise
If moving heavy, wooden storms in and out every year is not your cup of tea, some companies now make wooden storms that have lightweight, removable storm and screen inserts. They preserve the original appearance of you house and are very easy and convenient to use. Look in the Yellow Pages under Storm Windows and Doors or under Millwork to find out more about this compromise solution.