Windows & What To Watch Out For – Part I

It’s been too long, let’s get going and talk about windows.

Please note: This is not meant to be an in-depth article about windows but rather an overview with the intention to give you a better idea what’s important and needs to be considered when in the window buying process. It is certainly based on my biased view but hopefully fun to read. 🙂

Ok, close your eyes for a moment and think about your future basement. Imagine how you transform it into a light flooded office, a cozy bedroom or a warm play room for your kids. You have already started to set some money aside and believe now is the time to act. You get quotes, talk to contractors and realize that you could start immediately if you make some concessions. Concessions might include structural engineering services, permit drawing or window selection.
We talked earlier about structural engineering services and permit drawing. No matter what, both items are required by law (and out of good reasons), so your basement bedroom officially counts into the square footage of your home and the egress window installation is up-to-code. Only then your home appreciates officially by roughly 10% per additional bedroom (in the basement).
Well, then what about concessions when choosing a window(s)? Why not using a cheap(er) window?
One might think it is not such a big deal. A window is a window. How can we go wrong with a double glazed window with lifetime warranty (yes there are some cheap windows out there which offer it)? Nowadays one might think the windows are good enough, no matter what you choose.
The simple truth is that you could not be more wrong (Sorry! Who likes to be wrong!? 🙂 ).

Windows are like cars. Granted, every car brings you from A to B but there are so many differences besides aesthetics like functionalities, handling, quality grades, materials, efficiencies. The same accounts for windows. It is totally fine that some of the above mentioned criteria are not or low on everyone’s priority list.

I get it.

It comes with a but, a big one though: if you are not about aesthetics or different kind of materials, check at least the following criteria:
Functionalities – what is the window able to do.
Quality – kind of material and production/finishing of the materials.
Energy efficiencies – how well does it keep the cold out and the warmth in, vice versa depending on the season.

Let us firstly talk about functionalities: one may think, what on earth do I need other functionalities for my windows than open or close?
Cars do not only offer one kind of powertrain. They offer gas, diesel, hybrid, plug ins, fully electric or even hydrogen powered vehicles (see Nikola). The same accounts for windows: one can choose between different opening functionalities like casement, hoppers, sliders or hung windows.
Bear with me, imagine you could have a window that has one handle and depending on the way you turn the handle (to middle or top) it either tilts or opens. The best of two worlds, so-to-say a fully electric car with a reach of thousand miles.

It is called a tilt and turn window.

The best thing about it: you can tilt your window at night or when you leave your home and you don’t have to worry about burglary or rain. Pretty cool functionality, right?!
If the description peaked your curiosity, check it out here. A simple sliding, hung or casement window does not possess such a beneficial functionality. Too bad. 🙂

Part II will come soon and we will talk more about quality grades and energy efficiency.