It seems like everyone is selling replacement windows nowadays, from local hardware stores, to huge “big box” chains, to part-time remodelers with a ladder and a pick-up truck.
Unfortunately, it can be difficult to sort through the chaff to get to the wheat. Too many homeowners, eager to get a “good” deal, ignore the warning signs of a window that may not be of the quality you want in your home. Or they get taken in by a “here today, gone tomorrow” contractor who does not stick around to support their work.
One of the hidden problems that unsuspecting homeowners may face is off-the-shelf sizing. The premise is simple: manufacturers crank out thousands of identical windows in standard sizes. These are the windows commonly found in hardware stores, including the huge home product warehouse stores.
The problem is, the window openings (called fenestrations) in your home are seldom standard. As a result, using off-the-shelf windows often requires extensive work be done on your home. In some cases, the contractor must cut through the wall of your home to expand them to accommodate the new window. In others, the window is too small for the opening and filler must be used to close the gap. Neither is conducive to properly sealing your home against the weather.
On the other hand, a replacement window that is carefully measured and custom made specifically for your home creates a much better fit and tighter seal, without resorting to extensive modifications. That means few gaps or cracks that allow outside weather conditions to seep into your home.
Sure, it takes more time to custom make a window to exact specifications. And each window may cost a few extra dollars. But the installation process will be faster and smoother, and you can expect much better long term performance from the window.
A window contractor who is not certified by a reputable manufacturer is most likely installing off-the-shelf windows, and they may not be a good fit for your home.
If you’d like to learn more about the differences between custom sized windows and off-the-shelf windows, call Rescom Windows at (866) 410-5884. We’d be happy to show you the clear difference between the two.