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5 Tips for Window Shopping

The Truth About Replacement Windows

There can be a lot of hype in the window industry, and that has led to some common consumer misconceptions. We want to clear some of those up for you so that you can make the most informed decision possible and get the window that’s right for you and your home’s unique needs. If you’re not sure how to compare windows, check out the tips below.

1.   Pay attention to the NFRC label.

The NFRC label is one of the few things you can count on when you’re window shopping, and the most important thing you should research when comparison shopping. Major window manufacturers submit their windows to the National Fenestration Rating Council, a non-biased window rating organization that rates each window based on four factors. 

  • U-Factor
  • Solar Heat Gain Coefficient
  • Visible Transmittance
  • Air Leakage

Each factor is printed on the attached NFRC label to consistently compare similar new replacement windows.

2.   A more expensive window doesn’t necessarily mean a better window.

There are great windows available that sell for much cheaper than their competition, and they may be almost identical! Most windows are manufactured with the same materials, processes, and standards…often in the same factories! 
Price is determined by the seller and, here in the New Orleans area, you can often find windows at some of local competitors priced hundreds of dollars more than our windows. For us at The Window Source of NOLA, we believe that if we price our windows fairly, we’ll have happier customers who will refer us to their friends and neighbors. Click here to get a free estimate from the Window Source.

3.   Triple-pane windows are not the best fit for everyone.

It might surprise you to hear this, but “better” isn’t always what’s best. Triple-pane windows typically have better insulation properties and sound control than double-pane windows, but they might not be the best windows for you. Why? Because you might not need that extra boost in insulation or reduction of outside noise, and the extra cost might outweigh the benefits. 

Triple-pane windows are ideal for the Northern Climate Zone but may be too much for our Southern Louisiana climate. Energy Star published a chart with the recommended U-Factors for different regions. Triple Pane windows usually have a U-Factor of .25 or lower (The lower the U-Factor the more energy efficient). Take a look at the chart to help you determine which energy saving glass option is right for you or talk with one of our experts.

4.   Beware of high-pressure sales tactics.

Whether you’re buying a car or improving your home, it’s important to be aware of high pressure sales tactics. These sales tactics are not quite as common as they were in the 80’s and 90’s, but it’s still something to guard against. 

High pressure sales tactics typically involve creating a sense of urgency. For example, “We just sold a large condo association 350 windows, if I order your windows when I order these windows, I can get a volume discount from the manufacturer and I can pass those savings on to you, but I’d have to know today.” 

Whatever the tactic, the important thing is that you purchase new replacement windows or doors when you feel comfortable, find the best product at the best price, and trust the company.

5.   Make sure you get a quality installation.

Something many people don’t realize is that window installation is just as important as the window product itself. If a window isn’t properly installed and gaps aren’t sealed well, you could lose heating and cooling around the frame. Make sure your installers are experienced and that they are using a low expansion spray foam to seal any gaps between the frame and the wall. 

We only hire experienced local installers who take a sense of pride in their craftsmanship. When you purchase your new replacement windows and doors from The Window Source of NOLA, you can count on the best!