Is it Time for Replacement Windows?

 

Replacement-widnowHow do you know when it’s time to replace your windows?  For many homeowners, that question can be quite tricky.  Most of the time, many of us just figure that if our windows are letting in light, keeping out rain, and functioning properly, then all is well and there’s no need for replacement.  However, there may be underlying issues with your windows that you may not have ever noticed.  Below is a guide to help you determine some factors that may indicate that your home needs new replacement windows.

Your home’s windows are currently single pane glass

If you live in an older home that’s never had its windows replaced, there’s a good chance that you may be sporting single pane glass windows.  If this is the case, your windows may be costing you thousands of dollars in energy costs each year.  This is because the single layer of glass doesn’t provide enough insulation in order to maintain the temperature in your home.  This forces your heat and AC unit to work harder to try and maintain your home’s comfort levels.

Your home has become noisy

A noisy home may indicate poor degradation of your window quality.  If you’ve noticed that outside noises tend to be louder in your home each season, then it may be time to replace your old windows.  You might be surprised how quiet your home can become after a new installation!

If you are putting your home on the market

Did you know that replacing the windows in your home can help increase the value?  This is especially good to know if you’re looking to put your home on the market.  Chances are that you’ll receive a positive return on your investment if you invest in a quality window replacement such as Andersen.

Difficult to operate                                             

If you opt to never open your windows due to jamming or overall difficult use, then a replacement is probably for you.  Windows that are hard to operate or have a problem with jamming may have a rust issue or not be properly installed.  In either case, you’re probably costing yourself money each year due to poor energy efficiency.

If any of these factors apply to you, then I highly recommend seeking out a quality installer to make sure your home receives the best fit.  For those located in Fredericksburg, VA, I always recommend Richmond Window, as they’ve always been good to me and my family.

What’s your Home Missing?

bathroom decorative

Whether it’s for decorative or efficiency reasoning, a quality window tinting service can greatly improve upon your Indianapolis home. For many people, it doesn’t even cross their mind that residential tint exists. Most associate it with the car industry but there are many benefits towards incorporating an improvement like this into your home.

One popular reason that someone may want residential window tint is to reduce the amount of light coming in their windows. Having your windows optimized with a great 3M window film can drastically decrease the amount of sun glare which puts less stress on your eyes when you’re trying to relax, watch television, or when working on your computer. A properly installed window tinting setup can also help you to control the temperature inside a room.  When sun light enters the room it can raise the temperature but with a tint installation you can prevent excess heat energy from building up. Another great benefit is the fact that a 3M window film will block out all UV rays making it safe for you, your family and your pets. This reduction of sun glare also helps to preserve your precious heirlooms that can fade from the sun’s rays. By protecting your homes fabrics, carpeting, and furniture from the sun you can easily see how this investment can provide returns in the form of preventative care.

There are even some 3M product lines that help increase security and safety.  A security window film can protect against burglaries, severe weather, graffiti, and high impacts. When this option is installed on your windows a thicker film is provided to hold the glass together when it is struck whether it’s from someone trying to break in, a falling branch during a storm or you little one throwing around the baseball in the house. The anti-graffiti 3M film is applied on the outside so if someone tries to scratch or spray paint then you can simply remove the current film and apply a new one. This saves you from having to replace the whole window and spend a heck of a lot more dough.

If decoration is all you want then make sure to look into a nice 3M designer window tinting film. You can add a frosted look and even a decorative pattern or image. These are great for glass shower doors, embellishments on mirrors, and even on glass partitions throughout your home.

Now that you know what you’re missing, go out and get it!

Replacing your HVAC System

hvac-repairHVAC systems can be a confusing to many people, especially when it comes to deciding if a new system is necessary for their home.  There are many things to consider, most importantly being, if your system only needs a repair or a full replacement.  According to Energystar.gov, there are a number of tell-tale signs that indicate your HVAC system should be up for replacement.  Some of these signs include:

  • Your heat pump or air conditioner is over 10 years old
  • Your furnace or boiler is over 15 years old
  • Frequent repairs are needed
  • A noisy system
  • Excessive dust

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, then it may be time for you to replace your HVAC system.

Finding the Right Company

For a project this large, you’ll need a professional HVAC installation company to help you plan and install your new system.  Check your local listings and look for reviews of local companies that can help you out.  For those of you located around Baltimore MD, I highly suggest Arundel Heating and Cooling for your HVAC installation.  A good company will be able to answer all of your questions and help you pick the right system for your home.  Before signing off on any company, make sure that they have conducted a heating and cooling load calculation for your home.

Preparing Your Home

Once you’ve picked the right company for the job, you’ll need to prepare a few things.  First and foremost, you need to have a thorough duct cleaning of your home.  Often times, old systems will have dust and moisture lingering in the ductwork that can impact you and your family’s health.  Typically, the company you’ve hired will do this automatically, but if they don’t, then you need to make sure they do it or find an independent company to come in and do it.

Next, you’ll want to clear the area where the new equipment will be installed.  You’ll want to make sure the area you choose is easily accessible and easy to clean.  Make sure that the installers can easily get to the area by removing any debris, such as sticks, garden hoses, patio furniture, etc.  This will help make the installation process go quickly and smoothly.

Conserving Water in Your Household

Tips for Water Conservation

Saving water in your home is both beneficial to the environment and a great way to save money. Follow these tips to help you be more water efficient in your daily life. In any case, a plumber can help you get the help you need for repairs, installations, and overall suggestions.

In the Bathroom

First, and foremost, replace your old toilet. Toilets are a huge culprit for high water usage in homes today, and anything installed in the ‘90’s is probably outdated. To see if it’s time to install a new toilet, check the manufacturing date stamp.

Next, fix your leaky faucets. Even a slow drip can waste gallons of water over time. The same goes for shower heads.

New Appliances

Installing a new washing machine and dishwasher is another way to cut down on water usage in your home. Did you know that an Energy Star rated washing machine can use up to 50% less water in your home than a standard or outdated model? Better yet, new washing machines and dishwashers can typically handle larger loads- meaning you will be running less cycles to wash the same number of dishes.

Get a Plumbing Inspection

Many plumbers today are offering Whole Home Plumbing Inspections to make sure your home is running water efficiently. During this inspection, a certified plumber will check: bathroom fixtures like toilets, vanities, and showers; kitchen appliances such as sinks, dishwashers, and garbage disposals; water heaters and water pressure/tanks; drain lines to make sure there are no leaks or blockages; washing machine hookups; and exterior hydrants or faucets such as your garden hose.

Following these steps is easy with the help of a local, trusted plumber.

Entry Door Disasters

rottweiler and others

My dog, Mr. Vader, loves our Raleigh NC home.  He is a 6 year old Rottweiler and is always rambunctious and full of energy. His favorite things to do are slobber and jump over everything. He’s constantly biting something or scratching at it and it has seemed to make a mess of our house over the past year of living here. Our last home in Durham really got beat up by Mr. Vader and we don’t want it to happen to us at our new home so we decided to put him in a training program that would whip him into shape. Three months now and Mr. Vader’s behavior is starting to improve, however there are a few things around the home we need to fix due to his previous scratching.

He had a habit of scratching at the entry doors and also made a mess of our vinyl windows anytime someone would come by the house. We decided that they all needed to be replaced. This was good anyway because I really didn’t like the style of the entry doors in the first place. I decided that our new doors are going to need stained glass in them and I wanted them to be highly insulated.  This way we can save a little extra cash in the long run. The vinyl windows were also getting an overhaul as well. We decided to get the top of the line replacements that would also be highly energy efficient. Double hung windows were also our top choice so we went ahead and ordered them and the entry doors through a reliable replacement window company call Renewal by Andersen of Central NC. They were very helpful and got us set up rather quickly. They came in for our free initial quote and we were given a very fair price. In no time we had someone out to install everything and presto! We had our brand new set up. Everything looked lovely and I could instantly feel the benefits of our energy saving replacement vinyl windows and doors.

We have been keeping an eye out for Mr. Vader and luckily he hasn’t decided to throw down any more destruction towards our home. I am so happy we had him trained so we can enjoy our brand new windows and doors!

Post Party Furniture Cleaning

 

I don’t know how many other single parents have had this happen to you before but a few months ago I got home from a three day business meeting and low and behold I come home to a fully demolished home. I had left my 17 year old high school senior, Billy, to stay home and watch our beautiful northern VA house for me while I was gone and even specifically said no parties, but apparently he wasn’t listening too well. I had actually come home a day early which is why he hadn’t taken the time to clean up a little and was still passed out on the couch. There were beer cans everywhere, food on the walls, broken glass, and stains all over my couch that was handed down to me from my grandmother. I was very disappointed in Billy and let’s just say he had a good punishment of volunteer work and classes on the dangers of underage drinking. After getting most of the mess cleaned up I was still left with the unknown stains all over my grandmother’s couch. I knew I was going to need a superior furniture cleaning specialist for this task.

I recalled back when my friend Kathy was cleaning up her house and she had used Absolute Carpet Care. I remember her saying how great those guys took care of her and how they helped her out with all of her upholstery cleaning needs. I decided to give them a try and I was impressed from the get go. They were very kind when I spoke with them on the phone and they sounded like they knew their stuff. They also had assured me that they were the best furniture cleaning service around the Alexandria and Arlington VA area. With all that being said I trusted Kathy’s advice and I decided to try them out.  I was very impressed that they were able to come out the following day because I didn’t want this stain to get further saturated.

They arrived ten minutes early and were fully prepared to tackle this problem head on. They told me that it wouldn’t take that long to clean which was a relief because I had a very busy day ahead of me. While they were cleaning they explained to me that the solution they use is a plant based solution which doesn’t harm the environment at all. It literally took about 30 minutes and all the stains were gone. These folks did wonders to my family heirloom and I would suggest them to anyone looking for an excellent furniture cleaning or upholstery cleaning.

DIY Washing Machine Repair Gone Wrong

Have you ever tried to tackle an appliance repair and it starts out great then slowly results into a worse problem. Well that exact situation happened to me not too long, creating a whole lot of unwanted stress. All I wanted was some reliable washing machine repair advice! I’m from the town of Hoover AL, right next to Birmingham, and I was always taught that if a problem occurs to always try to fix it yourself first. As you can probably tell, I was raised in a family of DIY’ers! There wasn’t a single thing that my dad could fix. But I wasn’t my dad and I would start to try and fix something but could never seem to quit get it right all the time.

washer repair

In this case, I had gone on many DIY sites to learn do some washing machine repair on my year old LG Model. The problem was that machine would fill up all the way with the water but would insist on not spinning. It was also during a very bad time being that I needed clean clothes so I could get on my way to the beach for a week long get away. I was in a rush so that may have been part of the reason I couldn’t finish the job. All of these DIY washing machine repair sites led me in the direction that the lid switch is most likely the culprit so I went ahead with their suggestions. I was instructed to buy a tool which I had no idea how to use called a multimeter, which ended up costing me about 18 dollars. After purchasing I then had to go through the manual and figure out how to use the darn thing. After understanding a little bit about how to use the multimeter I then began the dirty work. I removed the wires connected to the switch just like they said and put the tester’s probes to the connectors of the switch. When I opened and closed the lid it was suppose read back to me continuity and no continuity if it was working but it didn’t which meant I needed to buy a new lid switch, so I did. I spent around about 40 bucks and installed it in  exactly as they said. Presto….right!? Nope. Still didn’t work. Another project messed up by yours truly. Luckily I have a go to appliance repair crew at Mr. Appliance Over the Mountain in Birmingham AL. They are always reliable if you find yourself in my shoes.

The Many Benefits of Home Window Tint

As homeowners, we are always trying to find better ways to make our house more comfortable and energy efficient. I have been upgrading my Northern Indiana home for the pastcouple years and one really great and affordable add-on I discovered was window tinting. It really changed my life around turning my house into a money saver while at the same time creating lighting that was easier on the eyes. I had many windows in most my rooms and these 3M window films really did the job on preventing unwanted sun glare.

happy home owner

I had originally found out about residential window tint by doing a little home improvement research online and came across the window tint experts in Fort Wayne IN called Sun Control Center. They were extremely professional and had lots of experience in this field. Through talking with their associates I learned some important benefits that incorporating window tint into my home will provide.

Accompanied with filtering sun glares, window tint in your home will also block out harmful UV rays that may affect you or your loved ones.  In fact a great window film like 3M’s brand can block up to 90-99% of all harmful UV rays. Reducing possible cancerous skin problems should be a strong benefactor. By reducing sun glares we also protect all of our furniture, fabrics, and carpeting.  The sun’s rays over time can damage your priceless furnishings by causing them to fade.

Another leading advantage that window tinting will bring to your home is the added durability it brings to your windows. The layer of film actually will prevent glass fragments from scattering across your room in the event that a window is broken preventing any injuries. It is also an added barrier from any future break-ins making it just a little bit harder to penetrate. The more time the bad guys need to break in, the greater the chance will be of them getting caught.

In my home I also took advantage of the privacy and decorative options. I incorporated frosted tint with flower embellishments in my bathroom to not only add a pleasing aesthetic feel but to block out any unwanted eyes. These are great if you want to change up the scene in your home.

One extremely important benefit that really put a smile on my face was the drop in my energy bill. My new home window tint is definitely an investment that has been giving back to me. One suggestion, if you decide to take on some window film into your home, is to use a professional like the guys at Sun Control Center in Northern Indiana. Good luck folks!

Window Replacement Equals Money Saved

If you stay in your home long enough chances are you will have to look for home replacement windows. Over time, they become damaged and there’s only so much cleaning you can do. New windows also often offer greater energy efficiency which helps bring your bills down … a benefit everyone can relate with. If you plan to sell your house new windows can definitely improve your curb appeal bring greater value to you initial investment. I have found the real estate market to be very competitive in Philly so finding a superior window replacement company is a must.  I have found Renewal by Anderson double hungto be the best when it comes to local solutions in this industry.

 

Replacement windows, unlike ones for new construction, fit into existing frames so you will need to buy windows that are the same size as your current ones or hire a construction company to install new fittings. Generally, to keep cost down, the best option is to stay with the same size frames you currently have. There are many different options for trims when considering home replacement windows. Wood windows offer the greatest range of color choices. They can be painted almost any conceivable color, as long as you can find the paint. We once had a house in our neighborhood that was painted pink with contrasting purple wood trimmed windows! I wasn’t too crazy about those colors but to each his own. However, wood also requires the greatest amount of upkeep. You must periodically repaint or it will quickly deteriorate. Painting is a very daunting task and can be costly to outsource with a painting company. When selecting home replacement windows many people prefer low maintenance options. Vinyl windows are almost fully maintenance free. While the color selection is limited, they last for many years to come with only normal washing. This can be done with the rental of a power washer. They are also suited to withstand many different climates.

 

When choosing replacements you also want to consider not only price but also the warranty. Some windows, especially inexpensive ones, may develop problems with the latches and sliders. You want to be sure the company selling you the windows stands behind their product like the product lines at Renewal by Anderson. If you want to maximize your energy efficiency then look for energy star labeled windows. Many of these qualify for federal and local rebate programs which can decrease the cost of your home window replacements.

How my Simple Window Renovations Changed My View on Life

So I’m  the kind of guy who is always looking for a new way to improve my home  whether it’s an addition that will decrease my living cost or merely an accent that will please the eye. I had been talking to my friend Joe about the renovations he had been doing to his new house in Richmond Va and he had mentioned how he just installed 3M window tinting to all of his windows and how much he was already enjoying them.  I decided to check out 3M’s website and see for myself.

3m-film-tint

I was amazed with all the options displayed on the site. Not only did they provide window films that offer sun control but also options that gave safety, security, and decorative themes. Their sun control films offered enticing savings of up t

o 30%, which in my case I would save 21% according to their potential savings calculator on their site. This would save me approximately $548 a year!!! Great investment! They also have the option to incorporate safety, security, and sun control all in one option. This was really cool because the safety/ security films hold glass panes together when struck. This can slow down an intruder or prevent any injury when broken during accidents.

After being all hyped up by the many benefits of 3M Window tinting I decided to commit and make a purchase. I was easily directed to a nearby 3M window film provider – Solar Film VA, right in the heart of Richmond VA not far from Henrico County. Here I talked with an associated and we set up a date to come get an estimate done. The estimate didn’t take long at all and I was very pleased with the affordable rates. He measured up all the windows and I decided to go with a sun control/security tinting feature.

It’s been three months since my home window tinting installation and I am super satisfied. My cooling bills surpassed the 21% anticipated deduction from the savings calculator and I have greater control of my homes temperature. I no longer have to worry about anymore sun glare on my computer screen and a more ambient lighting gives better room to relax. I also have greater comfort in knowing that its more difficult to break into my house.

I know for a fact that if I bought another house I would definitely choose 3M window films again.  With so many options to choose from anyone can incorporated them into your home and I highly suggest you do!

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