So you’ve decided to invest in new and energy-efficient replacement windows for your home. Congratulations! Taking that step can allow you to improve not only the overall beauty of your structure but also the comfort and performance of your home. We understand that window replacement is a difficult task, especially if this is your first time installing new windows. Most homeowners focus on preparing for the actual installation process, which is a great and surefire way to ensure the success of your project. Many people, however, forget to think about what comes next after the installation.
So what actually happens after your new windows have been installed? How do you ensure post-installation peace of mind and get back to your usual schedule? If you’re not sure of what to expect after the installation process, here’s a step-by-step guide to help you out:
Step #1: Weatherproof Your New Windows
If there are gaps between the window frame and your wall’s opening, air leakage will occur. The best way to remedy this is to choose a window that’s been custom-fit to your wall, reducing chances of gaps as much as possible. Keep in mind though that even custom-built windows won’t fit perfectly into openings, giving rise to a gap here and there. For this, your contractor should fill your window’s perimeter with insulating foam, weatherproofing the unit. This is to make sure that your window is 100% airtight and energy-efficient. Apart from minimizing heat loss and transfer, weathertight windows can also prevent unwanted drafts and moisture from entering your home.
Step #2: Apply Trim For Aesthetic Boost
Functional as it may be, insulating foam is not exactly good-looking. This is where the trim-laying step in the post-installation process comes in. After insulating foam is applied, your contractor should be ready to cover it with a trim. The good thing about window trim is that not only does it work well to hide unsightly insulating foam but it can actually also be used to accentuate your home’s interior, creating a smooth transition between your wall and window frame. But while its primary function is to look good, trim is also functional, adding another layer of insulation for your home and extra protection against water intrusion. To make the most of trim’s aesthetic element, be sure to choose one that complements the existing color scheme of your home.
Step #3: Clean Up
When your new windows arrive, they come with a protective film to prevent damage during storage and transportation. This film will be removed during the final cleanup, alongside window glass being shined and your furniture put back into place. Your contractor will also clean the general work area, leaving it spotless before packing up. After the cleanup, you’ll be left with beautiful new windows you can enjoy for years to come.
Step #4: Final Discussion with Your Contractor
Before leaving, your contractor should demonstrate how your new windows operate. Aside from simply showing you proper use, this step also ensures that your new windows are working as they should. You should also check your home, specifically the work area, to see if there are items that have been damaged during the installation. More importantly, this is your chance to ask questions and raise concerns about your new units. Although window experts are always easy to reach even after the installation, it’s wise to address your concerns before your contractor leaves your property so your concerns are addressed right away.
Understanding Your Window Warranty
Taking the time to understand your warranty is a step best reserved before you sign a contract because it’s a way for you to know exactly what you’re going to get out of your window replacement project. However, if you have any concerns, the end of the installation process is also a good time to bring them up. Ideally, you’re getting comprehensive warranties protecting you against material defects and craftsmanship issues. You can get a better grasp of the specifics by asking your window contractor the following questions:
● What does the warranty cover exactly? Does the material warranty cover both the glass and frame? What about other window components?
● How long is the warranty valid for?
● What are the conditions necessary to keeping window warranties valid?
● What’s the warranty claims process like?
Making Your New Windows Last
Your replacement windows can significantly increase the beauty, value, and energy efficiency of your home. With proper and regular maintenance, they can be trouble-free for as long as you own your home. To start, be sure to schedule routine cleaning and avoid abrasive cleaners as much as possible—they can cause scratches and dents on the frames and glass of your units. To properly clean your windows, you may use a squeegee or a soft-bristled brush; a clean, damp towel can also be a great alternative.
Over time, poorly maintained windows can be difficult to operate due to rust and corrosion on their moving parts. You can prevent this from happening by keeping these parts debris-free and regularly lubricated. Of course, you should also practice proper window operation at all times to prevent premature wear and tear.
Window replacement has a lot to offer but it does involve a bit of work on your part. Knowing exactly what to before, during, and after an installation, however, will give you peace of mind, which can add to your overall satisfaction of the home improvement project.
With over 12 years of experience in the home improvement industry, Robert Jackson is able to lead Atlanta’s top team for replacement windows and doors at Renewal by Andersen® of Atlanta. He’s also been certified by the Building Performance Institute, an indication of the extensive training and experience he brings to work every day. Outside of work, he enjoys spending time with his family and doing woodworking and photography. For updates from Robert, check out the company blog!