In my last article, I talked about re-stuccoing your home and mentioned window replacement. Replacing your windows is an important project for many reasons. There are two ways to replace your windows. First, which I consider the right way, we call “new construction”. We order your custom-sized windows to fit in the existing openings exactly. Once they are delivered, we breakout the stucco 6″ around the windows. The old windows are removed and the new ones installed.
An important step is the waterproofing. As the windows are put in, flashing paper is strategically placed around the nailing flange. Since stucco is porous this flashing keeps the water out. Chicken wire and stucco are then placed around the window. A color coat is then matched around the window as closely as possible. It is difficult to match stucco exactly so this is why I suggest you replace your windows before you re-color coat. If your windows have been measured correctly, little repair is necessary on the outside. Usually a bead of caulking and minor touch up paint is all you need. I feel strongly about the “new construction” method for one reason, if done correctly, itâ€™s problem free for years.
The second way to install windows is called “retro-fit”. These windows are custom ordered as well. When the windows arrive, the existing window sashes are removed and the frame is left in the wall. The retro-fit window has a large fin on the outside, which covers the old window frame. A bead of caulking is applied to the fin and then itâ€™s secured to the stucco. A vinyl trim strip is applied to the inside to cover the old window frame. With this method there is no stucco or drywall repair, but I question the integrity of the waterproofing. Itâ€™s the caulk on the stucco that is the protection. The retrofit is a less expensive way to go.
Some houses in Clairemont have wooden, single hung windows. These can be replaced easily if you leave the wood frame in. The advantage is itâ€™s a less expensive installation. The disadvantage is having to paint the wood trim. Most windows these days are dual glazed. This means there are two panels of glass with air sealed between them. The air acts as insulation for sound and temperature transfer.
Some of the other options available are grids, tint, Argon gas and Low E.
-Grids come in many designs to match the look of your house.
-Tint can be included and is smart if you have a window that gets a lot of sun, although it doesnâ€™t change the heat transfer much.
-Argon gas can be injected between the two pieces of glass. Argon, which is different than the air, slows down the heat and sound transfer.
-Low E is applied to the window and helps block the harmful ultra violet (UV) rays of the sun. UV rays can damage your furniture, draperies, and flooring. Low E does little to slow heat & sound transfer and does not change the color of the light.
We feel an important feature of replacement windows is the guarantee. We recommend Milguard windows. They are a great value, they boast a lifetime guarantee, and we have had great results with their products.