Replacement windows can add both aesthetic appeal and value to your home, but deciding whether to install them yourself or hire experts can be a difficult decision. It’s important to consider both the advantages and disadvantages of each option before making a choice.
The DIY route may be more cost-effective, but it requires specialized knowledge and skills that you may not have.
Your choice is split between doing it yourself or hiring professionals. While saving on labor costs sound appealing, DIY renovations aren’t for everyone. This article compares DIY and expert installation, so you won’t make costly mistakes.
The Pros and Cons of DIY Window Replacement
What sounds like a simple window frame swap can turn into a home renovation nightmare. A window replacement isn’t an “I’ll come back to it” project. Knowing your abilities is a priority before exposing your home to the elements.
The hardest part will not be your window measurements. A window replacement job is a complex task that requires skills and dedication. Faulty installation can lead to even greater costs than if it were to entrust your window replacement project into the hands of professionals.
Let’s measure the good and bad of a DIY window replacement:
- Costs — The material costs for full-frame replacement windows are at retail, but the labor is your own. This cuts the replacement costs in half if you’re committed to the project.
- Training — Any home renovation project can add to your skill set. This project could inspire new ones benefiting the home’s value and energy bills. Furthermore, the tools used in the project of replacing full-frame windows will come in handy for future projects.
- Selection — A pro may nudge your decision based on an upsell. DIY lets you stick to the exact window design & material you intend without pressure.
- Warranty — You incur the costs if the window breaks during the installation project. If you choose professional installation, you will get a warranty for the project. Your own warranty may not cover improper installation and subsequent damage.
- Haste and Waste — Professionals deal with weather and project changes all the time. Could you handle a sudden downpour or snow flurry?
- Mistakes — An improper window installation can lead to drafty windows and become a major energy waste. Add this to several windows, and the “savings” could have paid for pros doing it right the first time.
The Best Replacement Windows and Doors at the Best Price
We're the #1 Reviewed Door and Window Installation Service in Chicago for a reason. We know how to help.
The Pros and Cons of Expert Window Replacement
When it comes to window installation, the DIY approach may seem like an attractive option, but there are numerous benefits to hiring professionals trained in the art of window installation. Professional window replacement contractors have the knowledge and experience to get the job done quickly and correctly.
Not only can they help you choose the right type of window for your needs, but they can also ensure that your new windows are correctly installed with minimal disruption to your home. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages associated with professional window replacement.
- Materials Price — Reputable companies have great connections with window manufacturers and suppliers. This may drive window costs far lower than the ones you’ll find at a local home improvement store.
- License and Certification — These advantages add a layer of protection and ensure long-lasting windows. When the installation is up-to-code and backed by documentation, you can rest assured your windows will be in good shape for a long time.
- Transparency — An expert provides answers to questions revealing the project’s true cost. You might save a bit of money with a DIY project, but additional costs caused by improper installation may cancel the savings and even lower your home’s curb appeal.
- Labor Price — Professional services command professional pricing. This can turn costly if you’re planning a big-size window replacement project.
- Shady Characters — It’s not uncommon to find fly-by-night operations lurking in your town. These individuals usually provide a shoddy job and are long gone before real problems, such as water damage and faulty insulation, appear.
- Timing — You’re at the will of the expert and window suppliers. An expert with a large backlog delays work. If you’re dealing with windows that are not energy efficient or, even worse, that have holes and insulation issues, this may be more than just an inconvenience.
The Best Option to Install Replacement Windows
We’re not here to discourage you from undertaking a home renovation project. But we do hope you see the value of contacting a professional to install replacement windows, especially if your project involves replacing the entire window.
This article gave you an oversight of both choices. DIY is great at saving costs if you’re handy, but it may very well cause devastating consequences if you’re inexperienced. Expert installations, while costing more, guarantee energy efficiency and an extended lifespan.
Don’t think the DIY route is for you? Talk to our experts.
Post Update: The article was updated on December 10th, 2022, originally published on October 25th, 2018. It has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.