What do old windows & doors have in common? They’re almost never replaced with the same model or material anymore.
Did you ever try to find parts for an old car? Very often, the parts you need are no longer available because the model is long off the market and nearly impossible to find exactly what you’re looking for. The same goes for replacing old windows & old doors in your home. Finding an exact size and model replacement window or door can be very time-consuming…and costly, too. Let’s look at windows first:
WINDOWS win... with vinyl
All across Central & Southern Connecticut, why are vinyl windows so popular? Price AND durability. Vinyl windows LOOK like traditional window materials at FAR LESS COST. Today, it’s faster, more efficient, and far less expensive to purchase vinyl windows in the size of the window you’re replacing.
Replacing a window is your chance to make it taller or wider (or both) at FAR less cost than a traditional replacement window. If you choose the exact same size as your existing windows, a vinyl window will be more energy efficient…which is why some people decide to make the window space larger than it was before and it STILL turns out to be a lot less expensive than if you replaced it with an identical window. Plus, it’s even quicker to install. Our people at HandyWorks remodeling can do 15 windows in one day. Hey, they’re good.
Many popular brands like Anderson Windows, Pella windows or Peachtree windows are still very popular, while some models even let you tilt the window in for cleaning, to wash them from the inside.
Most windows are made to specs, but standard sizes are generally 32x54” or 32x47".
DOORS: Would wood… work?
In Connecticut, from Wallingford to West Haven, from Bethany to Branford or anywhere in between, exterior wooden front doors or side doors in this area are rarely being replaced with 100% wood. The reason? Price. Just as with windows, solid wood doors are so costly that people start looking for alternatives, and just like windows, price is instantly a factor for doors, too.
What DO doors DO? They “set the character for the front of your home”
Once people settle on the material for their front door, the next biggest decision is, “with or without a window in your door?” OR “how about some small pieces of glass in your window so light comes in, but nobody can see in.” There are literally millions of designs and configurations, and plenty of choices for you.
Front door materials…in order of price
1. Wood front door: the most expensive by far.
2. Fiberglass insulated front door. Moderate cost. Looks just like wood door.
3. Steel insulated front door. Least expensive. It looks just like a wood door, too.
Fiberglass and steel doors will open and close properly all the time, while an all-wood door swells in summer or become warped. When either happens, your door is tough to close. Fiberglass or steel doors often also have adjustable sills in the bottom of the door, which can be tweaked as needed for in-home comfort.
Both fiberglass or steel doors can be made to specs. Front doors are often 36” wide by 80” high, while side doors are 32x80”.
Q: What about doorknobs, deadbolts and door hinges?
A: Those are all “door hardware” and purchased separately. You’ve got plenty of choices there, too.
Next blog: Siding! We’ll walk out your front door a few steps, turn around and look at your siding! What works? What are the best values and hot trends in siding? Find out in Keith’s Korner Blog next week from HRD, Handyworks Remodeling and Design in Wallingford, CT.