Whether you are installing new windows yourself or hiring a professional, simply knowing the basics about the process will save you time and money. Here we provide you a breakdown of the 10 essential steps for a proper window installation.
No doubt you have heard the old adage “measure twice, cut once” and that philosophy applies to window installation as well. Prior to beginning the installation process, you or your installer should measure both the old window and new window to check for any discrepancies.
Carefully remove the old window while protecting the wall and any facings or moldings which will be reinstalled with the new window.
It is generally advisable to change out the window frame at the same time an old window is replaced since old frames are often not weathertight. These old frames may allow air and moisture to pass between your home and the outside environment leading to increased heating/air conditioning costs and structural damage from rotting wood.
Once the old frame is removed, check the exposed opening to ensure that there is no structural damage which needs to be repaired prior to installing the new window.
Confirm the proper fit of the new window by placing it into the frame and positioning so that the glass is as close to the exterior of the opening as possible. Correct positioning is vital to reducing potential thermal transfer and condensation.
Use quality shims to make minor fit adjustments and ensure that the window sits completely square and level within the frame. A level will allow you to confirm that the window corners are at a perfect 90-degree angle for proper function.
Once the window is perfectly positioned, use pilot holes and screws to secure the window into the frame.
Maximize the airtightness of your window by placing insulation around the frame. There are various insulation products on the market and if you are using a professional installer, they should help you analyze your needs and choose the best insulation for you.
Caulking is used to create a watertight seal between the window frame and the exterior siding of your house. Proper caulking will flex with the expansion and contraction of the building. This is achieved by a joint which is neither so small that it lacks adhesion nor so thick that it lacks flexibility.
To create a clean, polished finished look, moldings or casings of your choice will be installed to cover the raw interior face of the window frame and window jamb.
If you decided to DIY, cleanup is on you, however, if you hired an installer you should expect them to fully clean up the jobsite including removing your old window.
Once the installation and cleanup are complete, your installer should review the finished product with you to ensure you are satisfied with the quality of the work and that you have all the information on proper usage and applicable warranties.
By following these 10 essentials steps you can look forward to a proper window installation which maximizes thermal retention, minimizes potential moisture infiltration, and looks fantastic for years to come.