Blog > Category > Posted: 2023-Nov-16, Updated: 2023-Nov-30

The true meaning of BEST in replacement windows

The Best Window for Me
The true meaning of 'BEST' in replacement windows goes beyond a mere premium price tag. BEST doesn't always translate to the most expensive or highest quality; it involves a personal, subjective aspect.

For homeowners, deciding on the best replacement window involves considering six main categories:

  1. Quality
  2. Aesthetics
  3. Price
  4. Energy efficiency
  5. Time
  6. Installation

If you're aiming for the pinnacle in every aspect, this article delves into the optimal qualities within each 'BEST' category. It offers valuable tips and resources to assist you in pinpointing the most suitable solutions when replacing your existing windows.

Determining what's best for you is a personal decision. To streamline your search for the ideal window solution, commence by prioritizing the categories mentioned above.

1. Quality

When it comes to evaluating the quality of new windows, the process often involves a subjective perspective. However, a crucial aspect that can guide your decision is the warranty offered by the manufacturer. Opt for windows with a substantial lifetime or a 25-year warranty, as this not only reflects the manufacturer's confidence in their product but also provides long-term peace of mind for homeowners.

Taking a proactive approach, it's recommended to visit the window company and physically test the product before finalizing your purchase. This hands-on examination allows you to assess the window's build quality, functionality, and overall performance, ensuring that it aligns with your expectations.

In an ideal scenario, prioritize comprehensive coverage within the warranty, which includes both labour and materials. This level of coverage ensures that not only the product but also the associated services are protected, offering a robust and durable solution for up to 25 years. By considering these factors, you can make an informed decision and invest in windows that not only meet your immediate needs but also stand the test of time, enhancing the overall value of your home.

2. Aesthetics

When selecting a replacement window, ensuring that it complements your home's style and enhances curb appeal is crucial. Settling for less is not an option in this pursuit. Companies specializing in custom windows provide an extensive array of options for consideration.

The greater the variety of window products and options available, the higher the likelihood of finding a solution that perfectly aligns with your home and vision. Opting for the best replacement window means avoiding compromises on style, components, or options that don't seamlessly fit your vision. It's about getting exactly what you're looking for. Seek out windows that offer a broad spectrum of choices, including interior and exterior colours, finishing options, various grills, glass selections, and interior/exterior trim or brickmould options.

Not all replacement window companies are created equal, and they differ in flexibility regarding product design, installation procedures, options, and styles. If a window consultant suggests deviating from your plan and vision, approach their advice with caution. It's likely that the product they propose or offer has limitations in terms of style, materials, and options, and may not align with your specific needs.

3. Price

When it comes to determining the best price in the window and window replacement industry, navigating through the multitude of companies can be overwhelming. Each company claims to offer the best service, product, warranty, and price. The key to ensuring you secure the best price for replacement windows lies in making an apples-to-apples comparison — evaluating the same products and options across different providers.

Fortunately, in the Ottawa area, many companies offer identical products. If you possess good negotiation skills, leveraging one company against another becomes a strategic approach to securing the most favourable price.

In addition to comparing prices, it's crucial to consider potential post-purchase scenarios. What happens if a problem arises with a window after the purchase? Understanding the coverage for warranty work and materials is essential. Look for warranties that encompass both labour and materials, covering faulty products and installations without hidden costs. This proactive approach ensures not only a competitive initial price but also safeguards against unforeseen expenses down the line.

4. Energy efficiency (energy saving)

With Ottawa experiencing temperatures as low as -20 degrees (-30 in rare record-breaking cases) in winter and as high as +30 degrees in summer, the significance of window energy efficiency cannot be overstated when seeking the best replacement windows. Particularly, considering that approximately 25% of heating and cooling costs in most homes are directly linked to temperature gain and loss through windows.

The effectiveness of energy efficiency is intricately tied to both the type of window and the materials used. While wooden windows are renowned for their superior energy efficiency, and being considered a timeless technology, they often come with a higher price tag compared to alternatives like vinyl, fibreglass, or metal. Regrettably, this makes wood windows financially out of reach for the average window replacement consumer.

Given the substantial impact of cost in determining the best replacement window, exploring alternative materials becomes imperative. Consider options such as Vinyl-clad wood, Aluminum-clad wood, or multi-chamber vinyl or fibreglass windows. Look for Energy Star-rated products and leverage tools provided by Natural Resources Canada to make informed comparisons. This proactive approach not only ensures optimal energy efficiency but also helps strike a balance between performance and affordability in the quest for the best replacement windows.

5. Time

For optimal planning in window replacement, late fall and early January stand out as the prime periods to place orders. The spring and summer seasons, marked by heightened demand, tend to extend installation timelines, resulting in longer-than-usual wait periods. Additional delays may arise during government-backed rebate periods, and the recent surge in demand during the COVID-19 pandemic has further exacerbated these challenges.

Before the pandemic, winter installations typically boasted a turnaround time of 4-6 weeks from order to installation, while summer installations often ranged from 8-12 weeks. However, with the unprecedented demand observed during the COVID-19 pandemic, the current timeframe for installations can span anywhere from 4 to 8 months. This shift underscores the importance of strategic timing and proactive planning for those considering window replacements, ensuring a smoother process amid fluctuating demands and external factors.

6. Installation

In the final analysis of window replacement, one paramount consideration remains — installation. Regardless of having acquired the best window across all categories, the longevity and performance of your investment hinge entirely on the quality of installation. A subpar installation, devoid of premium materials, can compromise the effectiveness of even the finest windows, leading to diminished durability and performance.

To safeguard your investment, it is imperative to engage a reputable company that not only boasts positive references but also stands by its products and services. Opt for a provider with a track record of outstanding after-sale service and robust warranties. This ensures that the installation process aligns with the set standards, guaranteeing that your new windows not only meet but exceed expectations, ultimately fortifying the value and efficiency of your home.

Summary

To achieve the best window solution, prioritize considerations such as Quality, Aesthetics, Price, Energy Efficiency, Time, and Installation. Evaluate warranties, negotiate prices, and choose energy-efficient materials. Plan installations strategically, particularly during less busy periods, and select a reputable installation company for optimal performance and longevity.

Related topics

Getting the best window product, value and price

How to ensure a successful window purchase

Top considerations when choosing vinyl windows

Window efficiency by window style

The best window warranty in the window business

Choosing a window style - a practical guide

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