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Get Clear on Window Replacement

Article by Travis Williams

Photography by Sarah Dawn Photography

Originally published in Broomfield Lifestyle

Most people don’t give much thought about their windows until their is a problem. I hope to provide some clarity on what you should be looking for when it comes time to replace yours.

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

The demand to create windows that perform while providing amazing views is high. Using different window coatings (from the manufacturer) and internal technology, two identical-looking windows can be optimized for energy efficiency in different ways. For example, north-facing windows can be configured to transfer radiant solar heat, while blocking cold air. South-facing windows can block UV rays to help stabilize internal temperatures.

Impact resistant windows help prevent damage from errant golf balls or hail. Noisy dogs? Some windows have quieting technology to suppress noise.

Depending upon the elevation of your home or cabin, your windows will need special treatment. The “thin air” here can cause the argon gas (insulating value) between the panes to leak out. Trusted brands have great solutions for this, but don’t buy a random window from a big box store and expect it to perform in your mountain cabin.

It's not just the altitude. In September of 2020 parts of Colorado saw temps of 104 degrees, two days later there was almost 4” of snow on the ground. These wild temperature swings create problems for building materials, including windows. Windows can crack, warp, sealants can fail, etc. Materials and processes matter. 

FIBERGLASS WINDOWS

One of the best performers are fiberglass windows. I have seen lab results from a leading fiberglass frame test 100x stronger than a competing vinyl hybrid frame. This means you get a thinner, stronger frame, outstanding hail resistance. and more square inches of glass in the same opening. In other words, you get a larger viewing space AND a stronger window. Who says you can’t have your cake and eat it too? Overall, this is a beautiful option. There is minimal expansion or contraction of this type of material, and it performs well in our state’s dynamic climate.

BOTTOM LINE

Contrary to what you might hear from a window salesperson, new windows will not greatly increase the value of your home unless it provides a dramatic and visible change. Be certain that you are working with a window consultant, rather than just a salesperson. The right person will help you find the best solution for you.

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