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Replacing windows is a rite of passage that many homeowners go through at one point or another. Whether it’s just replacing broken glass, or upgrading the whole lot for something better, it’s an activity that’s full of pitfalls for the unwary. You won’t believe the amount of costly and just downright silly mistakes you can make if you rush into it blindly.

5 Most Common Mistakes When Replacing Your House Windows

Contributing Author: Apex Window WerksFull disclosure here. 

The internet is full of both good and bad information on how to go about replacing your house’s windows. Luckily you have stumbled on this particular article.

Keep reading to learn about the most common window replacement mistakes you should avoid.

Don't make these rookie mistakes when replacing your windows!

1. Just considering the cost

Yeah, we get it. It’s expensive to replace your windows.

So, to save some money, you get a bunch of estimates from a number of companies, and go with the cheapest.

Big mistake!

Do you even know what you’re paying for?

No, you won’t know just by looking at the cost at the bottom of the page.

You need to look at it a bit deeper to see what exactly you are paying for, and why it’s necessary. For instance, PVC windows may give you superior thermal insulation, but cheap ones may break within only a few years.

Don’t be fooled by a 10-year guarantee either.

If the manufacturer hasn’t been around for a very long time, and has a good track record, chances are they could go bust before the 10 years are up.

Speaking of track records, established installers may charge a bit more for labor, but the quality of their work will be good for much longer.

2. Trying to keep it the same
So, you replace your old windows with, well, your old windows. Or, at least, something that looks exactly the same.


Sure, they looked fine to you, but what about everyone else?

Why would you put them through the agony of staring at your horribly outdated windows, just because you fear change?

Mix it up a little!

Be bold and update your style. At the very least it will increase the value of your home. But you’ll also have more and better options to choose from, since your replica windows could be of poor quality.


What you should know before replacing your windows


3. Choosing the wrong thing

Windows are windows, right?


You’ll live much more comfortably if you choose windows that are appropriate for your geographical location, and the specific conditions around your home.

If you live in a very cold climate, where winter buries the landscape in six feet of snow, and temperatures plummet to far below zero, double or triple glazing will help to keep you toasty inside.

Proper window insulation will also help you to lower your energy costs.

On the other hand, if temperatures are mild year-round, you might want windows that can open wide to let in natural ventilation.


And something like a solar film can also take out some of the heat of the sun shining into the windows.


4. Playing DIY Hero

Congratulations on your brand new toolkit and power tools!

You must feel like Bob the Builder now, don’t you? Slow down, cowboy!

If you don’t know what your doing, your new tools will only help you make a mess much quicker than before. And although you will probably learn what not to do in the process, there’s something else you can learn right now.


Professional window installers do the job right the first time.

They even guarantee their work in case something wasn’t quite right.

Does your work come with a guarantee? No, it only comes with more costs to repair your mistakes.

After all of that, how much cheaper do you think your work was compared to the professionals? Or was it more expensive? We’re not saying you shouldn’t do it. Just keep your expectations realistic.

Things to know before replacing your windows!


5. Not doing routine maintenance

After lots of dust and money, all your windows have finally been replaced.

Now you can live happily ever after. Or not.

You still need to maintain your investment.

Yes, maintenance.

Little things like oiling squeaky hinges, replacing cracked glazing, and repainting the frames every now and then.

Now, if you do want to practice your DIY skills, here’s where you can do.

Unless it’s something major that needs to be fixed, though. But to make a long story short, if you take care of the little problems in time, you can prevent them from becoming bigger, more expensive problems.

As an example, a bit of cracked glazing can let in moisture which can start damaging your walls and window frames over time. But if you fix it in time, you can avoid more damage.


About the contributor

Apex Window Werks is a Chicago based company which provides the following services; wood window repair & replacement, broken glass replacement, window defogging and rotten window parts repair. Feel free to visit their website for more information and in order to get a free estimate for your project.