Time to Replace House Windows

My home was built about 23 years ago. For the past five years, I have been upgrading both inside and out. First, we changed an outside porch and converted it to a three-season room. New paint in the upper level, new carpets throughout, new HVAC, hot water heaters. Two years ago, I upgraded the kitchen, and last year the main bath.

I stayed in Ohio for this winter and noted the original Louisana Pacific windows are not as winter efficient as I would like. LP has since gone out of business, which has resulted in a set set of problems I’ll discuss later.

 I have drapes on the bedroom windows to conserve heat, but my living room, family room, and kitchen have light window treatments. When we upgraded the outside screened porch into a sunroom, we added casement windows. I looked up the invoice and found out we did that about 9 years ago. I never realized how long ago that was!! Most of the windows are no longer functioning correctly. The man problem is the cranks will not close the window entirely.

If you have followed me, you know I have been slowly but surely updating the house over the past ten years. owning a home means constant maintenance. Actually, I did nothing to this house for ten years and now I am playing catch- up. I wish I had painted, replaced carpet, upgraded kitchen and bath in those first ten years. But it is what it is, and I will eventually get caught up.

Windows are now becoming an issue. I learned replacement windows are one of the most expensive items in upgrading a home.  See below.

The Expense of Replacement Windows

  • Size.  Each manufacturer has control over the size of its windows. I found that my LP patio sliding door is a bit smaller than the average replacement. So I will have to pay for a custom-sized door.
  • Quality – According to Angie’s list the average replacement window costs anywhere from $170 to $1200
  • Material. The frame materials can vary. Most popular today are Vinyle or wood. Inside or out or a combination. There is a difference in which combination of material you use. Furthermore, other materials, such as aluminum and fiberglass, exist. Fiberglass being very expensive and aluminum a low ed material. Vinyl is the most cost-effective window frame. There are materials made to look like natural wood, sometimes used in the interior of the home.
  • Glass and energy efficiency. You can have single pane, double, or even triple-paned windows with increasing costs as you go up in number and the inert gases used. Additional charges can add up for glazing and coatings. All thee types have different efficiency ratings.
  • Installation. You can replace the window entirely- full frame or pocket- retrofit or insert window. Full incudes the additional expense of the window trims and edges whereas the insert replaces the window
  • Labor Usually cost of labor is calculated on an hourly base, with an average per hour rate of about $40.
  • Warranty and Certifications. Beware of your guarantee. This replacement is my second redo of the windows on the porch. When the first windows leaked their inside oil, and I could not get the hand crank to close the window completely. I called the builder, who informed me that labor nor placement was an issue, and I had to deal with the manufacturer. 

 I called them and sent pictures as requested. I never received a return call, and when I called again, I basically got the runaround. There was no warranty for the issues I experienced. Somehow I did something wrong. It would cost more to take them to court than to ignore. So be careful and fully understand who is responsible for what. I have an installation warranty for a year but a much better guarantee on the window manufacturer: some issues have a lifetime warranty.

My Windows

 I will have to replace the windows on a first need basis. While the sunroom windows are the newest, they are unfortunately the worse. The three-season room is off the upper level of this two-story, built into a hill, walkout basement home.

I cannot close the front windows at all. They are crank out ( called casement) windows, and you have to get out on a ladder and push the windows in while someone fastens it from the inside. I cannot tolerate this now. I am not going to get up on a ladder. I am scared of heights, have arthritis, and am no longer as spry.

I decided I could afford to replace the two most troublesome windows this year and had my local home improvement guys out to measure today.  

The windows throughout the house are Franch Casement; they crank out. That is the reason I have to get rid of them, at least on the porch. I have decided to get double-hung windows that I can open from the top or bottom in an upward/downward push.

For more information on the types of windows see HERE 

I just might get away with the double-hung on the far end of the porch. A problem may be the condo association. All windows have the match here, and the hung window has that bar across at mid window, whereas the casement crank out is a clear piece of glass. I hope there is no problem with replacing the two on the far end of the porch. If I must, I will use the crank out replacements on the rest of the windows.

The next item I need to replace is the sliding glass door. This door is on the lower level and not tight, secure, or well made. It has one lock, a flip-up lock only. I am concerned about security, so I place a bar inside the frame at night.

The new window has a double lock, and it also has a deadbolt lock on the top and bottom. The window also has a builtin blind inside the glass so I can get rid of the old shades.

Unfortunately, as I said before, the patio door is not a standard size. I will have to have it special ordered. So now I await the bad news. The sliding door is typically relatively expensive; I can hardly wait to see the custom cost!!! We might have to do these windows and no more for a few years. I think they will probably eat up my budget for this year and subsequent year replacements.

Have you replaced any windows? What was your experience?

Thanks for visiting. Look forward to your comments


Leave a Comment