How to Care for Vinyl Windows: “Do’s and Don’ts”

How to care for vinyl windows?

Are you wondering how to care for vinyl windows? Vinyl windows are designed for easy care and maintenance. Just a tiny bit of elbow grease from time to time will extend the life and beauty of your windows.

Below are some quick and basic tips for caring for your vinyl windows. Following these “do’s and don’ts will extend the life and performance of your vinyl windows:

Vinyl Window Care “Do’s”

  • Vacuum soil and debris from the sill or track before washing.
  • Use a mixture of mild dish soap or any non-abrasive soap and water to gently clean window frames.
  • Rinse thoroughly and dry with a soft absorbent cloth.
  • Make sure any weep holes are clear of obstruction and draining properly. Weep holes help your window drain and are located on the bottom of the window.
  • Remove the screens and wash them with a soft brush on a flat surface with mild dish soap and water.
  • Check the weather stripping around all window sashes in the fall.
  • Occasionally lubricate moving parts including rollers and tracks. Make sure to test the lubricant on an unseen part of the window to ensure it doesn’t stain.

Vinyl Window “Don’ts”

  • Don’t use abrasive or caustic cleaners or solvents as they may damage the finish of your windows.
  • Don’t wash windows in direct sunlight, if possible.
  • Don’t use a high-pressure spray to wash the windows as it may damage the insulation and glass seal.
  • Don’t use sharp instruments or abrasive pads to clean the glass.
  • Don’t attach anything to the glass, such as masking tape. Heat from the sun may bake the adhesive into the glass, and make it difficult to remove.
  • Don’t use a silicone spray on plastic parts as it may damage them; use a non-wax furniture polish instead.

Vinyl windows are a great investment for your home. Ask one of our GNH Experts about vinyl windows or visit our showrooms to see the latest styles and options for yourself!

How to Measure Windows

How to Measure Windows for Replacement

How to Measure WindowsIf you’re going to install replacement windows, it pays to measure windows correctly the first time and avoid the headache of placing an incorrect order.

How to Measure Windows 101:

  1. Always measure the entire window, not just the glass. This includes the frame and trim as well as the window glass.
  2. When recording measurements, follow the format “width by length.” For example, a window that is 63 inches wide and 27 inches long is recorded as “63 x 27.” A window that is 37 inches wide and 55 inches long is recorded as “37 x 55.” Record your measurements to the nearest 1/16 inch.
  3. Measure windows width from the left edge to the right edge. Check this measurement in three places, the bottom, middle, and top. If these measurements are not equal, use the smallest as your width.
  4. Measure windows height from the top edge to the bottom edge. Check this measurement in three places, on the left side, middle, and right side. If these measurements are not equal, use the smallest as your height.
  5. Take an additional set of measurements inside the window frame.
  6. Measure the width of the trim that surrounds the window. The trim on the sides may be different from the top and bottom – so measure each part.
  7. Measure the height and depth of the sill. If your windows don’t open, check if you have a door in the same wall where you can measure the wall’s thickness.
  8. Take a picture of a multi-paned window and record the measurements on the print to eliminate confusion. Record the overall window width and length, both inside and outside the frame. Measure and record the width and length of each window section and the measurements of any subsections. For example, the overall window may be 60 x 20, composed of two windows 30 x 20.

What’s the Next Step?

Bring your measurements and photos into GNH and talk to one of our window experts to help plan your replacement window order. Keep in mind that the windowsill’s height may be added to your window height to get the full size of the opening. When ordering replacement windows, we recommend ordering just slightly smaller than the opening. This allows for leveling and the application of sealant.

A helpful overview of the window replacement process from Marvin Windows:

 

Contractor Installing Windows

Why Choose Vinyl Windows?

Contractor Installing Windows

The Superior Replacement Option

Fall is here, and winter isn’t too far behind it! If you find yourself dealing with old or drafty windows, replacing them soon is a great idea. Now, new windows shouldn’t just look good and increase your home’s curb value. There are so many energy-efficient models available now, and they can help lower your energy bills. If you’re looking for a window that can do it all and stand up to the toughest weather – you should choose vinyl windows.

What Are Vinyl Windows?

When we talk about vinyl windows, we’re referring to “all-vinyl” windows. These are different than “vinyl-clad” windows, which use wood window frames with a thinner layer of vinyl on the exterior. Vinyl windows have window and sash frames made entirely from PVC, which is a very durable material. PVC can easily withstand even the harshest swings in weather. So, wherever you live, vinyl windows are the clear-cut choice!

Easy to Clean & Care For

Compared to other framing options like wood or aluminum, vinyl is incredibly low maintenance. Unlike wood windows, you never need to sand, scrape, or paint them to keep them looking beautiful. Vinyl also doesn’t rot, is impervious to water damage, and won’t attract wood-tunneling birds or bugs. And while aluminum windows can transfer heat or cold through the frame, that’s not the case with vinyl! All you ever need to do to get vinyl looking brand-new again is a little light scrubbing with warm, soapy water.

Nearly Endless Choices

No matter what style you’re looking to add to your home, you’re likely to find a vinyl window that matches it. Vinyl replacement windows are available in practically every style possible – from casement to awning! You can even find vinyl windows in more unusual shapes and styles, such as octagonal, round top, or transom. If you’re looking for a completely new window style, you can even order vinyl windows in custom sizes to fit your existing opening. Many manufacturers even offer special wood-grain finishes, so your frame resembles real wood.

Additional Benefits of Vinyl Windows

Vinyl replacement windows are a great way to keep your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer. But did you know that certain Energy Star rated windows are eligible for tax deductions? And aside from saving you money every year, they also make your home that much more appealing to buyers! That’s on top of the fact that replacement windows can add up to 97% of their cost to your home value.

Easy Installation

Vinyl windows can be installed as easily as any other type of window – but it pays to do it right the first time. No matter what your window is made from, if it’s not installed right, it won’t work as well. Thankfully, many window manufacturers offer helpful guides to cut down on the guesswork. If you’re stuck or don’t feel confident doing it yourself, we can help too! GNH Lumber is proud to offer installation advice and planning to help you get your windows in right and on time.

Feeling ready to get those windows replaced? Get in touch with us today – we can help you find the best replacement windows for your home!

What are Some Advantages to Choosing Double Hung Windows?

What are Some Advantages to Choosing Double Hung Windows?

What are Some Advantages to Choosing Double Hung Windows?

Have you considered updating or adding double hung windows? Fall is here, soon to be followed by winter. Now’s the time to prepare your home from bitter cold temperatures.

Your windows may appear operational, but if they whistle, rattle or leak, then you’re likely losing money in heating costs. The same is true of your brittle or cracked weather-stripping. Small leaks, cracks and rattles add up to a big difference in your monthly utility bills.

If it’s time to update your windows, consider double hung replacements. There are many advantages to the design of the window, including easy cleaning and care. In addition, double hung windows can improve energy-efficiency and curb appeal, too.


Click here to get started now.

Here are some of the major advantages of double hung windows:

  • Superior Ventilation. They provide great ventilation capabilities and the ability to control airflow. For maximum ventilation, you simply open both top and bottom sashes – the bottom sash will let in cool, fresh air, while the top sash will allow warm indoor air to be expelled through it.
  • Aesthetically Adaptable. Its traditional look can match any home style. In fact, double hung windows are known for their classic appeal, which makes them suitable for any home or room. They also come in a variety of styles, sizes, colors, and finishes.
  • Easy to Maintain. These windows often come with tilt-out sashes that make cleaning easier, as you can clean both the interior and exterior from inside your home. Some even have removable sashes.
  • Addition Friendly. They are ideal for the easy fitting of air conditioners and screens. Because most units are designed to slide up and down instead of cranking out or sliding to the side, they can safely hold AC units, and allow for their easy removal, as needed.
  • Energy-Efficient. Aside from the superior ventilation mentioned earlier, this type of window brings in a generous amount of natural light. By choosing Low-E glass with gas fill you can further enhance savings on your energy costs.

For all these reasons and more, you should seriously consider double hung windows as an option when choosing replacement windows for your home.


Get Your New Windows Today!

The experts at GNH Lumber are here to answer your questions, provide product suggestions and tips for each step of your window replacement project! Click here to get started.

Replacement Windows

5 Signs That You Need Replacement Windows

Keep Your Windows Up to Date

Replacement Windows

Your windows should help keep your home feeling comfortable and looking its best. As time goes on, your windows’ performance gradually begins to fade. Weather stripping is damaged, the seals begin to fail, and the various parts of your windows get brittle and break. So, how exactly do you know when it’s time to finally replace your windows? While some of the signs are obvious, others are harder to catch before it’s too late. Thankfully, there are 5 telltale signs that let you know that it’s time to invest in replacement windows for your home. 

The Pets Always Know 

We’ll start with one of the most obvious signs you need new windows: How comfortable the climate in your home is. If one or more rooms in your home are overly hot in the summer or frigid in the winter, it’s likely that your windows are one of the largest factors. Aside from yourself, pay attention to your pets as well! If even Fido needs a blanket every time the temperature drops outside, it’s time to start looking into replacement windows. New windows, especially versatile and resilient vinyl windows, are made of stronger materials than older windows, and can help keep your home feeling comfy and cozy – no matter the season. 

Appearances Aren’t Always Deceiving 

Minor aesthetic damages usually aren’t anything to be concerned about in terms of the state of your windows. However, significant physical damages usually point to failing windows. For example, if your windows constantly have foggy panes, that’s a sign that gas is escaping from between the panes and condensation has formed inside. Over time, that heat and water can loosen the seals on your windows. Similarly, chipping paint and an inability to hold a new coat of paint can mean water damage has set in. This water damage can also lead to moldy smells, another sure sign that your windows need replacing! 

Bills, Bills, Bills 

If your windows aren’t performing at their best, doesn’t it make sense that your energy bills would go up?  It’s true – leaking or inferior windows lead to your heat and air conditioning filtering outside, reducing their efficacy inside and wasting your energy. Even if you can afford the extra money, heating and cooling the outdoors is wasteful and consumes more natural resources than is necessary. If you’re not sure what your fuel and electricity bills should be, ask your neighbors what they pay. If their house is built like yours and their family is a similar size, their bills should be roughly the same. 

Open Sesame 

Even though it may seem obvious, if your windows are either too hard or too easy to get open/through, they’re probably at the end of their shelf life. And replacement windows aren’t just there for quality-of-life improvements, they can keep you safer as well. Windows that are too hard to open are a safety hazard, especially in the event of a natural disaster or other emergency. On the other hand, windows with weak seals, gaps in the caulking, holes, etc. allow bugs and other pests easier entry into your home – it’s one of the many reasons why new windows are so helpful! 

Tune Out the Noise 

There’s a lot more people in the world now, and a lot more noise to be heard, especially in crowded neighborhoods. Another sign of failing windows is more of that noise creeping into your home. Windows that are improperly sealed or are older can let in much more outside noise, and that means more difficulty sleeping or holding a conversation indoors. Thankfully, modern windows can be fitted with three panes of glass and special laminations – so you don’t have to shout to be heard anymore. 

Even if you’re just looking to upgrade your windows and give your home a new look, we encourage you to get out and do it! Let us help you find the best choice so you can increase your home’s curb value and save on your energy bills. 

How to Choose Replacement Windows

How to Choose Replacement Windows

How to Choose Replacement Windows

The autumn season is the perfect time to swap out drafty old windows with new energy efficient ones. Investing in replacement windows now will equal savings on heating costs all winter long—and beyond. But how do you choose replacement windows in the first place?

One shortcut is to visit your local GNH Lumber to discuss your window replacement project with our seasoned experts.

Click here to get started now.

To help you choose just the right windows for your home and budget, we recommend considering some common cost-saving options and answering a few common questions beforehand:

1) PLANNING

Start by considering which windows you want to replace. Do you want to replace all of them, one floor at a time, or just individual units that will save energy and add convenience to a particular room in your home?

2) BUDGET

Prepare a preliminary budget. This will help you determine how many windows you can replace with the styles, features, and materials you want. Pay particular attention to the window’s thermal performance since this will factor into the cost. Windows that qualify for tax rebates may cost more initially but these costs are offset by rebates and greater energy savings over time!

3) APPLICATION 

What do you want your new windows to do? Are they architectural design features or will they provide specific functionality? Do you want the windows to open and close? How they should operate? Vinyl windows like Smarter Windows from GNH Lumber will provide lower maintenance, greater convenience, and higher energy performance than most wood windows.

4) ENERGY EFFICIENCY 

Finally, discuss energy-efficient window options (like standard insulated glass and low-e glass) with the knowledgeable staff at GNH Lumber. Don’t forget to work the additional cost of these features into the context of estimated savings on your heating and cooling bills. Do the expected savings justify the extra cost? Vinyl window frames are less expensive and do provide more insulation qualities.

Sources: http://www.smarterwindows.com/Page/How_to_Buy_Replacement_Windows

How to Replace Windows in Zones

How to Replace Windows in Zones

How to Replace Windows in Zones

Should you replace windows in zones?

Replacement windows can save you as much as 15% on your energy bills while reducing wear and tear on heating and cooling systems. Plus, updated windows will improve your quality of life by introducing more light and fresh air to your favorite room or home office.

If you’re overwhelmed by the idea of a full window replacement, don’t worry. You don’t have to replace every single window in your home to start enjoying beauty, function, and energy-savings. Instead, you can replace windows one zone at a time.

Explore replacement Marvin windows in a wide range of styles at GNH Lumber! Simply request a project quote today

Want to learn more about the benefits of new windows? Get the FREE guide!

Window Replacement by the Zone

Now is the perfect time to replace your home’s older or malfunctioning windows before the chill of autumn comes and begins stealing away precious heating dollars. But how do you know which windows need replacing? Some signs, such as condensation or cosmetic damage, might not need replacement at all and are actually perfectly normal. Others, like water stains and wood rot, need immediate replacement.

Knowing the signs that require prompt attention versus those that can be easily fixed can help you evaluate whether and how soon a replacement is needed. This will help you replace windows in “zones” for a more targeted, cost-effective approach.

Remember, you don’t have to replace every single window in your home in order to make a dramatic improvement in your home’s style, airflow, and energy savings!

Here’s our guide to evaluating your home’s overall window health and creating “zones” for targeted window replacement.

How to Replace Windows in Zones

Zone #1 – Immediate Attention Needed

Sometimes replacement windows are non-negotiable, especially when they greatly compromise your home’s energy-efficiency and/or security. Look for these signs that you’re in the “red” zone:

  • WATER DAMAGE – Water between glass panes, leaking, water stains or evidence of wood rot can be signs excess moisture is accumulating where you cannot see it, which means your windows are no longer effective. This can lead to mold, mildew, warping, or structural damage.
  • COMPROMISED SECURITY – As entry points into your home, you should address broken windows immediately.

 

Zone #2 – Time to Investigate

Sometimes replacement isn’t immediately necessary, although it would still help with ease of operation and climate control. Here are some warning signs for windows you should keep an eye on:

  • FAULTY OPERATION – Difficulty opening or closing, sticking sash and pesky operational issues can sometimes be solved with a thorough cleaning or small repair. However, these can also be signs that parts are nearing the end of their lifespan.
  • LESS CLIMATE CONTROL – New windows can get rid of drafts to make rooms more comfortable. But if the time isn’t right, replacement can wait!

 

Zone #3 – No Need to Replace

Some of your home’s windows may not need replacing at all! Don’t mistake these signs for critical damage. They are likely normal and can be corrected during routine maintenance:

  • CONDENSATION – Condensation is perfectly normal. It simply indicates the presence of humidity, which means your windows are doing their job and holding heat inside your home. There are many easy ways to remove condensation that don’t involve replacement. Read more at Marvin.com/condensation.
  • COSMETIC ISSUES – Issues like chipped paint, tarnished hardware, and dirty weather stripping can be addressed on your schedule with routine care and maintenance.

By dividing your home into zones using the evaluation methods above, you can make the right window replacements now while keeping less urgent updates on the back-burner for a later date.