Many homeowners look at replacing windows as a job they can put off until absolutely necessary. If the windows aren’t cracked or a noticeable eyesore what’s the harm in replacing them at a later time? The truth is every year put off changing out old, inefficient windows means one more year of paying exorbitantly higher utility bills than necessary. Granted window replacement is a pretty big investment…it also offers a significant return of investment that goes well beyond keeping cold air out and warm air in.
To Be More Comfortable
A drafty night can be nice in September but not so much in the middle of January. Having old windows that have broken down on the edges and sides lets a supply of cold air in that’s surprisingly noticeable. Conversely there’s nothing like heating up a room on a cold night only to have all that warm air be conveniently delivered to outside the house. Granted insulating the side of the windows and doors as well as fixing up exposed areas of boards and siding will help, but it’s a lost cause if the windows are inferior.
To Lower Utility Bills
Along the same lines of being comfortable, when a thermostat is set to 70 degrees in the winter it should be enough to stay warm. Unfortunately when all that heat escapes through thin windows a person has to jack up their thermostat to 75-78 degrees just to compensate. Calculate this extra drain on a heating bill over the course of a winter, and then over the course of 7 or 8 winters, installing new windows almost pay for themselves.
To Avoid Replacing a Furnace and Air Conditioner
You’ll see that having inferior windows has a trickle-down effect that can be very costly. First you were cold (or warm) so you had to adjust the furnace or air conditioner. In turn the utility bills continued to rise but in doing so the HVAC system was working harder to meet demands that they weren’t designed or engineered to meet. This constant stress on a furnace or a/c just to save money from replacing windows eventually leads to a blower motor failing, then a compressor, then a condenser until the parts can no longer be repaired, they need replaced. The costs continue to rise.
So Your Belongings Don’t Get Damaged
To be fair most homeowners are well aware of the energy deficiencies caused by a lack of replacing windows. There is much more to the story though considering that older windows have standard glass that is not treated to reflect UV rays. This doesn’t just make the house hotter, the light source starts to fade couches, recliners, carpet, and anything else that it beats down on for 6+ hours a day. So far holding off on replacing the windows has cost higher utility bills as well as a new furnace, air-conditioner, and now carpet!
For Less Outside Noises Interrupting You
The fading of your furniture could be considered a long-term nuisance but noise that echoes from the outside world through your single pane windows has an instant effect on quality of living. Thicker windows won’t quiet the sound of a barking dog or a rambunctious playground baseball game completely but they’ll be surprisingly effective. Two-fold when you’re inside jamming out to 1980’s hair ballads the thicker windows will muffle some of the sound so that your neighbors are less inclined to call in the authorities.
For Safety and Security, Inside and Out
Single pane windows could shatter if a fit butterfly hit them just right so imagine how easy access is for a thief with bad intent. Double or triple pane windows will at least make the criminal work for entrance or may be enough to deter them altogether. With new windows you’ll not only be safe from outside forces, but to leave in a hurry from the inside if needed. Old windows have a tendency to stick from shifting over the years or have latches stick which could be very dangerous in a fire or other emergency exit situation.
New Windows Just Look Better
Curb appeal and functionality are the desired result of almost every remodeling project and window replacement accomplishes both of these. Crisp, clean, bright window borders have a way of ‘popping out’ against the color of a home’s siding adding a real sharp look to an older home. The new windows are easier to clean and keep streak-free and add a vibe to a house that is almost indescribable.
Old Windows Are Inconvenient
When something breaks on an old window (as is apt to do more frequently), it can be hard to find replacement latches and levers. The homeowner is faced with losing the functionality of a window or cobbling it together with toothpicks and popsicle sticks. Newer windows have a part number and replacement pieces available at nearby hardware stores or under warranty directly from the manufacturer.
It’s understandable that budget concerns can put off window replacement for longer than planned but seeing the benefits of a switch out it may be time to start saving.
Photo by Andersen Windows