Window and Door Installation and Maintenance


Windows bring light, warmth, and beauty into buildings and give a feeling of openness and space to living areas. They can also be major sources of heat loss in the winter and heat gain in the summer. However, when properly selected and installed, windows can help minimize a home’s heating, cooling, and lighting costs. HDR Remodeling offers a variety of options to improve the efficiency of your current windows or, if necessary, replace them with highly efficient double pane styles.

Controlling Air Leaks and Heat Loss/Gain

When air leaks around windows energy is wasted.  Energy is also transferred through the centers, edges and frames of windows.  Heat escapes around loosely fitted windows and through glass.  Reducing or eliminating these paths of heat flow can greatly improve the energy efficiency of windows and ultimately, of homes.  Caulks are airtight compounds that fill cracks, gaps and holes.  Weather stripping is a narrow piece of metal, vinyl, rubber or foam that seals the contact points between the movable and fixed sections of a window joint.  It should be applied between the sash and frame, but should not interfere with the operation of the window.

Movable insulation, such as insulating shades, shutters and drapes, can be applied on the inside of windows to reduce heat loss in the winter and heat gain in the summer.  Shading devices, such as awnings, exterior shutters, or screens, can be used to reduce unwanted heat gain in he summer.  In most cases these window treatments are more cost efficient than new windows.

Window Replacement

The type and quality of the window frame usually affect a window’s air infiltration and heat loss characteristics. Many window frames are available–all with varying degrees of energy efficiency. Some of the more common are fixed-pane, casement, awning, single and double-hung and horizontal sliding.

Fixed-Pane

When properly installed, fixed-pane windows are airtight and inexpensive and can be custom designed for a wide variety of applications. But because they cannot be opened, fixed-pane windows are unsuitable in places where ventilation is required.

Casement and Awning

Casement and awning windows with compression seals are moderately airtight and provide good ventilation when opened. Casement windows open sideways with hand cranks. Awning windows are similar to casement windows except that their hinges are located at the top of the window instead of at the sides. Windows with compression seals allow about half as much air leakage as double-hung and horizontal sliding window with sliding seals

Single and Double Hung.

Double-hung windows have top and bottom sashes (the sliding sections of the window) and can be opened by pulling up the lower sashes or pulling down the upper sash. Although they are among the most popular type of window, double-hung windows can be inefficient because they are often leaky. Single-hung windows are somewhat better because only one sash moves.

Horizontal Sliding

Horizontal sliding windows are like double-hung windows except that the sashes are located on the left and right edges rather than on the tops and bottoms. Horizontal sliding windows open on the side and are especially suitable for spaces that require a long, narrow view..

Insulation to Reduce Heat Loss/Gain

Standard single-pane glass has very little insulating value. It provides only a thin barrier to the outside and can account for considerable heat loss and gain. Traditionally, the approach to improve a window’s energy efficiency has been to increase the number of glass panes in the unit, because multiple layers of glass increase the window’s ability to resist heat flow.

Double-or triple-pane windows have insulating air- or gas- filled spaces between each pane. Each layer of glass and the air spaces resist heat flow. Advanced, multi-pane windows are manufactured with inert gases (argon or krypton) in the spaces between the panes because these gases transfer less heat than does air. Multi-pane windows are considerably more expensive than single-pane windows but provide significant long-term savings opportunities on your utility bills.

Double-or triple-pane windows have insulating air- or gas- filled spaces between each pane. Each layer of glass and the air spaces resist heat flow. Advanced, multi-pane windows are manufactured with inert gases (argon or krypton) in the spaces between the panes because these gases transfer less heat than does air. Multi-pane windows are considerably more expensive than single-pane windows but provide significant long-term savings opportunities on your utility bills.

Frame Materials

Window frames are available in a variety of materials including aluminum, wood, vinyl, and fiberglass. Frames may be primarily composed of one material, or they may be a combination of different materials such as wood and vinyl. Each frame material has its advantages and disadvantages.

Aluminum

Though ideal for customized window design at low cost, aluminum frames cause conductive heat loss and condensation.

Wood

Wood frames have higher R-values, are unaffected by temperature extremes and are less prone to condensation, but they require considerable maintenance in the form of periodic painting. If wood frames are not properly protected from moisture, they can warp, crack, and stick.

Vinyl

Vinyl window frames, which are made primarily from polyvinyl chloride (pvc), offer many advantages. They are available in a wide range of styles and shapes, have moderate to high R-values, are easily customized, are competitively priced, require low maintenance, and mold easily into almost any shape. But vinyl frames are not strong or rigid, which limits the weight of glass that can be used. In addition, vinyl frames can soften, warp, twist, and bow.

Fiberglass

Fiberglass frames can be made in a variety of colors and can hold large expanses of glass. Some fiberglass frames are hollow; others are filled with fiberglass insulation. .

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About hdrremodeling

Co-owner and Creative Director of solutions focused. highly creative residential remodeling company.
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