When was the last time you were relieved to get your energy bill? If your utility costs are climbing each year, you might consider replacing your windows with more energy-efficient products to help save money. And in hot and humid climates like Raleigh-Durham, energy-efficient windows aren’t just a nice-to-have — they’re the best way to stay comfortable in your home.
The windows in your home give you access to the outdoors, and the right window design can offer many benefits to homeowners. But windows are also the biggest culprit when it comes to a high energy bill — old windows can allow for excessive heat transfer and air infiltration in the home. But when it comes to replacement windows, it’s important to utilize high-quality window solutions to get the best results.
When to Look for Replacement Windows
It can be quite an investment to replace your windows, but take some time to inspect the units in your home before you start shopping. You might not need to replace the existing frames if they’re in good shape, which can save you a bit of money. “How much you’d actually save depends on your local climate, utility rates, and other factors,” according to Consumer Reports.
There are a few other rules of thumb to keep in mind with windows:
For optimal energy efficiency (and a return on investment), replace all of your windows at the same time.
If you have windows that are 20+ years old, it’s likely time to replace them, or will be soon.
If the windows have extensive damage or stop operating correctly, it might be time to replace them.
“If your frames are too old and deteriorated, you’ll need full replacement windows, which are the same windows used in new construction,” explains Consumer Reports. A full replacement will noticeably improve your home’s performance and security, which makes the cost of new windows easier to accept.
Spend some time going over your windows and their frames to make the best decision for your home.
Benefits of Replacement Windows
Exterior improvements will always amp up your home’s curb appeal, and a trends report from Remodeling shows that window replacements are among the top 10 products that provide the greatest ROI.
But replacement windows will impact the performance of your home and can provide benefits that go beyond curb appeal. New windows will improve the overall aesthetic of your home, both inside and out.
Indoor comfort: If you upgrade to newer windows, chances are this will improve your home’s acoustics. Better insulation and windows with multiple panes provide a buffer from outdoor noise and traffic.
Improved insulation: Updated windows will help create a continuous layer of insulation in the home, which can guarantee a seal of protection from the outdoors and prevents air infiltration and heat transfer.
Customized experience: Windows can help homeowners regulate the temperature and ventilation in a room, and today’s window designs allow you a range of options with configuration and operation.
There are also tax benefits and assistance programs for homeowners in North Carolina looking to upgrade their windows: the Low Income Energy Assistance Program and North Carolina Weatherization Assistance Program.
Tips for Updating Your Windows
If you’ve decided to update your windows, there are a few tips to keep in mind that will make your purchase go more smoothly.
Find windows that work with your existing curb appeal. The style should complement your home’s existing design.
High cost doesn’t always equal high quality. Look at product warranties and customer reviews online to get a sense of the best products available.
Check for the ENERGY STAR and other performance ratings on the products you look at.
Look for products with custom options. Maybe it’s time to switch to a crank-out or push-out style window — there are a ton of styles and finishes to choose from.
And if you’re thinking about doing the job yourself, make sure you have help and plenty of training. A poorly installed window will cause more problems in the long run. “Even the best windows won’t deliver the look or comfort you expect if they’re installed incorrectly. Professional installation is key, especially if you have an older home where, say, window frames have shifted over time and are no longer squared off at the corners,” according to Consumer Reports.
The Best Brands for Energy-Efficient Windows
Talbert Building Supply is proud to carry several window brands and designs that will upgrade your home’s exterior. We carry popular brands like Marvin, Atrium, Wincore, and Ply Gem, along with other exterior products, to help you improve the look of your home.
At Talbert, our window specialists work closely with customers to ensure their window design and installation are a success. “Each house is a custom house; we’re not doing many cookie-cutter neighborhoods,” says Eric Mrozkowski, Installed Sales Project Manager. “So, each house is approached as an individual job.”
Our team is dedicated to helping customers with window design and selection, whether you’re remodeling a historic home or working on a new construction project. Talbert’s membership in the Lumbermens Merchandising Corporation (LMC) means we have strong supplier partnerships that allow us to serve more customers.
Take a look at our window offerings to get an idea of what might work on your home, or if you’re in Raleigh/Durham, stop by our Durham location for a more personal experience. (If you’re looking for other activities and events in Durham, read more here.)
Ready to get started on your window replacement project? Reach out to our Vinyl Siding & Window specialist team or our Premium Window & Door specialist team — we’re here to help with any additional questions or concerns you might have.