Helpful Resources

We thought it would be helpful to create a page that compiles all of the resources we reference throughout the site.  This way you have everything you need in one place.  We’ll be updating this page as we go along and we’ll be referencing it frequently.  We recommend bookmarking this page for your convenience.  Have fun!

Disclosure: some of the companies below have established relationships with The Window Dog that pay us small referral fees at no additional cost to you if you decide to work with them.  Please know that we have significant personal experience with each of these companies and we recommend them because they are helpful, not because of the small referral fees we receive.  This income does help us keep the lights on around here so if you think any of these companies will be helpful we encourage you to try them out and let us know how everything goes.

Our Most Recommended

Probably the number one takeaway from this whole site is that you can pick great windows, but if they’re not installed by a great company you’ll be out of luck.  Here are two ways you can sort through all of the window companies in town to identify a few great folks to meet with.

Angie’s List: We’re sure you’ve heard of Angie’s List, but perhaps you haven’t joined yet.  We can emphatically tell you that based on our significant experience there is absolutely no better way for a consumer to make sure they’ll be treated well.  Angie’s List is a great way for consumers to hold service providers accountable and to understand who these companies are before you invite them into your home.

Join Angie's List Today

You can see our detailed post on Angie’s List From a Contractor’s Perspective and you can click this link to get a discount off of the regular price.  Note that the smartest move is either the 2 year or 3 year membership as you save on the cost and they’ll refund 110% if you’re not satisfied.

 

HomeAdvisor: Find Local Home Window Services. Get Up to 4 Quotes Now. It’s Quick, Free, and Easy! Whether you’re skeptical of a paid list or you’d rather have prescreened local companies reach out to you Home Advisor represents a fantastic option.

They screen and approve local contractors in a variety of industries including windows and doors.  By clicking here and submitting your info you’ll be contacted by up to 4 prescreened local companies who will bid for your project.  You pay absolutely nothing, and your project will be moving forward right away.

 

Blinds.com: Once you have your new windows figured out it’s probably going to be time for new blinds, shades or window coverings.  I purchased a whole house full of new blinds for our cabin and it couldn’t have worked out better.  While I know a fair amount about windows I’m no expert when it comes to blinds.

blinds.com window coverings

I can tell you based on my personal experience that they offered a HUGE selection, easy instructions and a SureFit guarantee so I didn’t need to worry about measuring them correctly.

My new window coverings look fantastic, I personally saved over $1000 compared with a quote from a local installation company, and I installed my new blinds on 16 windows and 2 doors in less than 3 hours.  Click here to take a look at what they have to offer.

Your new windows will thank you.

 

RealSidingInfo.com: If you’re thinking about getting some new siding  along with your new windows you’ll find helpful vinyl siding reviews on this site.  You’ll also find fiber cement siding reviews, product details and warranty info for all of the major siding manufacturers.

vinyl and fiber cement siding reviews

There is no better source of info on residential siding.  As you’re comparing your options you’ll see that siding projects are typically more expensive than a window project.  If you’re doing enough window research to have made it to this point on this site, you will definitely like the vinyl and fiber cement siding reviews that you’ll find here.

 

Window Universe: If you’re looking for new windows and doors installed by experts without the runaround often associated with projects like this you might look to see if Window Universe covers your area.

window universe best replacement windowsWith their complete lifetime warranties, written 110% best value guarantee and long list of satisfied customers it’s hard to find a better deal when it comes to new windows and doors.  Window Universe currently offers service in Washington, DC, Baltimore, Richmond, Cleveland, Akron and Indianapolis.

 

LJ Neal & Sons: If you’re in the Chicago suburbs you’ll be well served by Leo and Bridgette from LJ Neal & Sons.  They’ve been in business in the Chicago area for over 60 years and they take customer service seriously.

LJ Neal best window company chicago

To learn more about how they can help with your project just give them a ring.  They’ll schedule an appointment with the owners of the company so you can be sure your project will get detailed attention from start to finish.  Their number is 630-929-6190 and their website is here.

 

Service Tools

So you’re going to tackle your window repair or replacement project yourself?  We like it.  Here are some specialty tools and materials that you’ll need.

If you’re replacing foggy or broken glass you’ll need these three things you probably don’t already have.

1. An Insulating Glass Caliper to measure the overall thickness of the glass unit.  This one does the job well.  CRL Insulating Glass Caliper

2. A Deglazing Tool to get the old glass out of the sash.  This is the most cost effective model.  CRL Window Zipper Deglazing Tool

3. Glazing Tape like this to seal in the new glass unit.  Double Coated Window Glazing Tape: 1/16 in. thick x 3/8 in. x 50 yds.

4. Screen Tool.  Use this simple tool to rescreen any window screen in your home.  Fixing a window screen is a simple task if you have the right tools.  Here’s an inexpensive screen tool that will help you get the job done.

Update: We now have more recommend LOCAL window companies than ever before.   Click here to see who we recommend in your town.  It's 100% free.  You'll thank me.  There is no better resource; you're going to love it.  See for yourself right here.  

32 thoughts on “Helpful Resources”

  1. Does it mean much when one window has a condensation resistance of .62 and the other window i am considering has a condensation resistance of .56?
    what am i giving up if i choose the .56 window?
    thanks
    chris

    1. Not much unless you have a very humid home. I was emailing with someone last week who had a humidifier in her home to help preserve an antique piano. If you have some specific reason to have higher than normal humidity you should be sure that the CR on the new windows will be enough to prevent condensation. If you don’t you’ll be fine with any efficient window options. We’ll be coming out with a detailed post on condensation and new windows shortly. Stay tuned!

    1. We have, just haven’t gotten to the reviews yet. The last sample we had our hands on looked ok, but unremarkable. Their 8 year labor warranty is ok (better than some others), but not spectacular. The lack of any real info on their website could be a sign that there isn’t much to brag about, or it could just be that they’re better at making windows than websites.

      If you have any specific questions or any specific info they gave you about the products they’re proposing we’ll be glad to try to help.

  2. they have a seaway solutions and encore window if you have anything that would be great solutions goes about $330 installed with wrap and encore $405 installed both include metal wrap plus another $16 apiece for insulation I live in buffalo ny area thanks for the help

    1. now I moved on to another window and in your review for Simonton reflexions 50/50 you recommend a prism 5500 I see know prism 5500 but a refexions 5500 is that the same and you recommend to get the prism 5500 are you gonna do a review on them thanks

  3. Hello and thank you for your insite and advice about window. However as hard as I tried, I could not see a window brand that you would recommend. Can you be more specific as what brands you would personally consider? Thank you

  4. This question is on glazing. How might replacing the glass and reglazing affect the seal? Is the lowE double or triple paned glass sealed in the factory to prevent contamination?

    Thanks. I absolutely love your website!

    1. If I understand your question correctly, the glass units are sealed at the plant before they’re installed into the window. The double pane or triple pane units are essentially one piece after they’re sealed and they’re not coming apart.

      Typically if one breaks or fails or needs to be reordered for any reason the manufacturer will send a new sash rather than just the glass unit. Then the old sash pops out and the new one pops in and you’re done in 10 seconds. Removing the glass unit and replacing with a new one is possible (we’re going to be recording a video on that soon!), but it’s a lot more work and it really isn’t necessary if you can just order a sash from the manufacturer.

      Hope that helps!

  5. I am considering these three windows, would like your thoughts:
    window world, Alside Mezzo, Atrium Windjammer series 40
    please advise.

  6. I am considering the Alslide Mezzo, the Revere sovereign and the Berkshire Elite and the Preservation windows. who would you recommend in my area Bristol pa. 19007 that is on Angie’s List. Please need help. Thank You.

    Robert W. Broomell

    1. I don’t personally know any companies up your way, but it sounds like you’re doing some good research. Did you find some good folks on Angie’s List? I would bet there are plenty.

      1. I cant find anyone on Angie’s List for Revere, Alslide, or Preservation. Angies list told me to go to the Manufacturer.

        Maybe I live in an area where you cant get what you want.
        I guess I will have to contact each of the Manufacturer’s to see if they can direct in the right place. So far Angies List has been a bust.

        1. I try to tell folks that it’s best to find a great company before you fall in love with a window model. It’s possible that the Preservation dealer in your area is no good (I don’t know them, just making an example). There are MANY great windows out there.

          I’d suggest, start with the best rated companies on Angie’s List and then see what they offer and how one option compares to another.

          You can find a great window installed by a jerk and you won’t be happy. You need good people doing the work and the rest will likely work out great.

  7. Hi, found your website while researching window replacements. Hoping to get your opinion on 2 quotes we just received. We have 6 windows, 2 sliders (70″ wide), 2 sliders (118″ wide) and one slider (176″ wide). One quote was for Milgard windows (Tuscany Series) for $20,000. The second was for Simonton windows (Daylight Max series 7300) for $14,000. Both quotes are from reputable companies.
    Thank you for any insights.

  8. Hi,

    I’m hoping you can give some unbiased advise with regards to replacing a fixed window. Our home is 21 years old with Peachtree wood windows. The seal has broken on our large foyer window(76″x36″) and I am trying to determine best, most cost effective replacement. I’ve been tempted to go vinyl due to cost but have been told it can effect our housing value and also it is not as stable as wood, given the size and placement of the window. Others have said it doesn’t matter. Any thoughts? It is an upper story fixed window in a two story foyer. I should add this window is unprotected from the elements.
    I’ve had quotes from Pella, Andersen (outrageous price) and Window Universe. Any advice is appreciated.

    1. I think vinyl will hold up just fine. You had a wood window before and that failed, so the argument that wood windows hold up better shouldn’t hold much water with you.

      1. Thanks for putting it so succinctly! You have validated my decision. I have appreciated all the info on your website. We’ve never replaced Windows before and there is definitely a learning curve.

  9. Can you explain (or refer me to an explanation of) the difference between “replacement windows” and “full frame replacements”?

    1. We’re going to be writing a post on this soon so keep an eye out for all sorts of info. The basics are that a typical replacement window is all that is needed for most installations. Some companies try to push full frame replacements as a better options, but in most cases that is mostly sales pitch. I’d ask your local expert to explain the differences if you’re not sure. It’s much easier to explain when you can touch the window and point to the parts.

  10. I desparately need help choosing a window. I am deciding between Champion and Soft-lite pro. My main concern is sound dampening, but maintaining natural light in the room. Will a double pane with an STC rating of 27 be as good as a triple pane with an STC of 27? Does air infiltration ratings contribute to better sound dampening?

      1. Laminated glass will typically be better, but it will cost more. A decision only you can make. It’s not uncommon for folks to use laminated glass on one side of the house or in one room. That may help with the cost.

    1. The STC rating is the STC rating so a double pane window with an STC of 27 will be EXACTLY the same as a triple pane window with an STC rating of 27. Like saying is a Porsche going 50 MPH going faster than a Toyota going 50 MPH. The Porsche sure looks faster, but they’re both going 50 MPH.

  11. Folks,

    On 2/13/2016 the complete window manufactured by Silverline blew in and came crashing into the bath tub which is adjacent. The glass on side of the two part window shattered completely. Fortunately, no one was in the bathroom at that time. The only thing connecting the incident was strong winds gusting from time to time. It felt like an explosion due the to window falling several feet with accompanying shattering glass and splintering. Has anyone experienced this before. We contacted the manufacture who wants to charge to inspect the window. How do we tackle an issue with defective material? We are the first owner of this home which is 13 years old. This could have been a very serious incident and could happen to others and hence we are seeking professional guidance.

    Appreciate any guidance in this matter.
    Thanks

    1. Wow, hopefully that’s an uncommon problem. It should be pretty easy to tell what failed by looking at it. Did the whole window frame come in, or just the sashes that hold the glass? If the whole frame came it you should be able to see where it was attached. I supposed water intrusion could cause the wood to rot causing the screws to come lose. If you look through the wreckage to see where it failed you’ll be on the way to getting it solved.

  12. Dear Window Dog

    Have you heard of Paradigm or HomeGuard windows? I live in MD and a local contractor carries these 2 windows which are from Maine?

  13. I’ve been reading your comments and reviews and learning a lot about replacement windows. Am currently looking at Okna from HomeSealed Exteriors in the Milwaukee area. I have a quote of about $5000 for four small casements (27×27) and one double hung (28×46) with between glass grids. Does this sound reasonable? I understand that Home Sealed is your recommended company in the Milwaukee area.

    1. Without knowing the details of your project it’s hard to say exactly what something should cost. I know Brandon and his team offer fair pricing and a wide range of options so I would be confident that they’re offer a fair deal. You can always ask to look at an alternative if you’d like. I’m sure they’ll be happy to help out.

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