Monthly Archives: December 2016

How to Choose Quality Vinyl Windows

It used to be that vinyl windows were considered an unflattering, cheap alternative to other window materials like wood and aluminum. They were not energy efficient and didn’t look very nice either. Over time, the color would yellow and the seams would crack. Fortunately, times have changed and manufacturers have come a long way, as have vinyl windows.

Vinyl Windows are now one of the most popular, affordable options for many homeowners. Vinyl windows provide so many benefits. They are durable, water resistant, they don’t warp or fade, and are energy efficient. You have more color, style, and design choices now then ever before. However, there are still some physically inferior vinyl windows on the market. You want to be sure you are getting the best. At Quality Windows & Doors, we want to make sure of that too. So here are some tips for choosing quality vinyl windows.

Characteristics of Good Vinyl

While all vinyl windows are made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), the same material used in electrical pipes and plumbing, not all PVC is alike. It takes the right mixture of several fillers, plasticizers, chemicals and pigments to make PVC. There are different “recipes,” different grades, and quality levels. How do you know if what you are looking at is good vinyl? There are a few things to look for.

Physical Examination

As with most other construction materials, better vinyl usually costs more, but don’t rely on price alone to determine quality. You can also look at the color. If the vinyl has a bluish tint, it likely doesn’t have the right amounts of organic tin and titanium dioxide. These additives are used to strengthen the material. Vinyl can also be newly made, or recycled. Ultimately, the best way to figure out the quality is looking at the certification from the American Architectural Manufacturers Association.

Consider the Construction

Another gauge is the thickness. Look at a cross section of the vinyl window. Measure a cross section if possible. Thicker vinyl frames are often better. Also, count the number of chambers. More chambers of differing sizes mean better quality. The chambers help prevent deformation or melting caused by heat or sun exposure. Finally, look at the joints. Screws and brackets with caulking are fine, but welded joints are better. This creates a better seal.

Look at the Labels

Thanks to the National Fenestration Ratings Council (NFRC) it is easy to compare energy ratings on different types of vinyl windows. Granted, it will not tell you directly if the vinyl is high or low quality. What it does give you is the U-Factor and the Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC). Both of these measurements tell you how well your vinyl windows prevent heat transfer and save energy. The better the U-Factor and SHGC, the better the vinyl in your window frames.

Want some professional help comparing vinyl windows in Westlake Village, CA? At Quality Windows & Doors, we can help. Call us today at (310) 456-3979 or visit our storefront, 1430 S Oxnard Blvd. Oxnard, California 93030. We can provide all the information you are looking for and help you find the best quality vinyl windows for your home and budget.

Checking Windows for Leaks

The hot summer in Agoura Hills, CA is over and cooler weather is moving in. It is time to take a look at your windows. Windows are prone to water and air leaks through any cracks or openings. Sometimes the air can get trapped inside the walls, leaking into your home through the outlets and up through floorboards. Not only do leaks cause damage, but they can also produce cold spots and drive up your utility bills.

That is why it is important to perform routine inspections on your windows, especially during seasonal changes. Performing the checks is quite simple. Here are a few easy steps you can follow to keep your home safe and protected against the elements.

Visual Inspection

You need to check windows, both inside and outside. To inspect the interior pull back the window treatments. Look around the perimeter of the window, checking for any light shining through where it shouldn’t. Even a small gap can become a big problem. You should also look for fogging or moisture trapped between panes. This indicates a broken seal.

On the outside of your home, inspect the caulking to see where it might be failing. Make sure the weather stripping around windows is intact. Take note of any damage that requires replacement.

Another simple way to perform this test is to perform a hand test on a cooler day in Agoura Hills, CA. Turn on the heat inside your home and run your hand around the inside surfaces of your windows. If you feel cold air, then you likely have an air leak.

Physical Inspection

Unfortunately, not all air leaks are obvious. Another way to detect air leaks is by using a stick of incense. Close all the windows and doors in your home and turn on the exhaust fans in your kitchen and bathrooms. To increase accuracy, make sure there is no additional airflow by shutting down your furnace and air conditioner. This will create negative pressure inside your home. Any crack or opening will suck air into the home as the fans work to pump it out.

Light the stick of incense and run it around the perimeter of windows. If the smoke is undisturbed, there are likely no leaks. If it waivers and is drawn inward by outside air, then you have a problem.

Another option is much more technical. You can detect air leaks with an infrared thermometer. It measures ambient air temperatures. Where cold air is coming in, the thermometer shows a colder temperature. You will know the areas where you are most vulnerable.

Call in a Professional

You might want to hire a professional to perform more advanced tests. They might perform a “blower-door” test. Or perhaps you can get a free energy audit from the local utility company in Agoura Hills, CA. They can easily help you find air leaks and give you the best options for repair. Sometimes it will be as easy as reapplying caulk. Other cases will require replacement windows.

Let the professionals at Quality Windows & Doors lend a hand. If you need replacement windows in Agoura Hills, CA, you want to be sure the installation is done properly so there are no leaks in your new windows. Call us today at (310) 456-3979 or visit us at 1430 S Oxnard Blvd. Oxnard, California 93030.

Benefits of Aluminum Windows

When you need new windows, you have a lot of options to consider. You may like the look of one type of window, but you don’t want the maintenance it involves. You may like the price tag on another, but not the appearance. There are plenty of things to think over, but aluminum windows are one type to put near the top of the list. There are a lot of benefits for using aluminum windows on your home in Camarillo, CA. Here are just a few to get you started.

Benefit#1: They Exceed Energy Efficiency Standards

Aluminum windows are high-performance windows that go above and beyond normal levels of energy efficiency. If you are replacing old windows in your home, you can expect to see a positive difference in your utility bills no matter what windows you choose. But when you choose aluminum windows, you will get even more improvements in heat gain and loss through the windows.

Benefit#2: They Help the Environment

No matter how you heat and cool your home, you know whenever the air kicks on, you are using energy. Aluminum windows cut back on the amount of energy you use simply by insulating your home better. You can expect to save quite a bit of money on your bills and you are saving precious energy, which is good for the environment at the same time. The material itself is also recycled at the highest rate of any metal. It is a good material to use and reinforces itself with its inherent properties.

Benefit#3: They are Low Maintenance and Highly Durable

Aluminum has corrosion resistant qualities that create a low maintenance frame. These windows are resistant to anything the weather throws at them and they can withstand the harsh California sun and heat. Unlike other window materials, they will not swell, crack, warp, or even split over time. They have a longer life than other materials and they can be left in their original finished condition with no extra work on your part.

Benefit#4: They are Affordable

Aluminum frames are significantly cheaper than many of the other window options. They are economical not only because of their upfront price tag but also because of the energy outcomes you will see later.

Benefit#5: They Come with Flexible Design Options

Aluminum is a flexible material and it can be bent to your exact specifications. Your only limitation is your imagination when it comes to this type of window. You have an endless array of glass options and finishes, which give you a wide range of possibilities. You can do something straightforward and economical or you can go with something more elaborate. Any option will still give you the thermal protection you want.

If you are interested in learning more about aluminum windows in Camarillo, CA, call Quality Windows at 805-984-5895. You are also welcome to stop by our showroom at 1430 S. Oxnard Blvd, Oxnard, CA 93030. We are happy to show you some examples of aluminum windows and answer any questions you have.

When is it Time for New Replacement Windows?

By now, you have probably heard that replacement windows save energy and give you money-saving advantages on your utility bills. But installing new windows is an extensive project and you want to make sure you are really ready for new windows on your home in Thousand Oaks, CA. There are several telltale signs that help you recognize that the time for new replacement windows has come.

-Your Windows are Still Single Pane

Older windows often feature a single pane of glass. If your windows are old enough to still have just one pane, you should consider new replacement windows. Single pane windows are the least energy efficient windows and they allow heat to transfer between the indoors and outdoors. You lose a lot of air-conditioned air and let a lot of heat in simply because there is only one pane of glass.

-Your Windows Don’t Operate Properly

It’s a nuisance to try to open a window that doesn’t want to open and when it gets stuck in the open position, you are really in trouble. When your windows don’t operate as they should, it is a sign that they are past their prime. The windows are quickly going downhill and the operation is probably just one of the issues that you notice the most. There are likely other problems, like lack of energy efficiency that you could also boost with new replacement windows.

-Your Seals Fail

The seals around windows aren’t meant to last forever. If you start to feel drafts around a window even when it is closed, the seal may have failed. You are wasting a lot of money and energy by leaving the windows as they are. Replacing them will save money and energy for the long haul.

-Noise Outside Comes Inside with Ease

Modern windows reduce the transfer of heat into your home and they also insulate the house from noise too. If you hear the noise outside easily, your windows are probably out of date. If you prefer peace and quiet, it might be time to get new windows installed.

-You Notice Condensation Between Panes

Even if your windows are modern enough or a high enough model to have double or triple pane glass, they might still need to be replaced. Windows with more than one pane have a layer of air between them, which helps them insulate your home. When you see condensation forming between the glass panes, the window is not functioning properly.

No one can force you to purchase and install new windows, but if you are interested in windows that will function better and save energy, call Quality Windows at 805-984-5895. You are welcome to stop by our showroom at 1430 S Oxnard Blvd, Oxnard, CA 93030. We have been installing replacement windows in Thousand Oaks, CA for over 30 years and we are happy to discuss your home’s needs. If you need quality replacement windows, we are ready to work with you.

What Makes Milgard a Quality Brand for Replacement Windows?

When you are looking for replacement windows for your home in Ventura, CA, you have a lot of decisions to make. Once you know what basic type of window you want, you still have to decide on a brand to buy. There are plenty of options on the market, but Milgard is a quality brand that you can trust when it comes to replacement windows in Ventura, CA. Here are a few reasons why Milgard is a good brand to consider.

-Revolutionary Designs

Milgard doesn’t just install standard windows into your home. You get a myriad of options, many of which have innovative designs. Take the Essence Series, for example. This series pairs natural wood interiors with fiberglass exterior frames. You get all the beauty of wood inside and the durability of fiberglass outside with the same replacement windows. It’s those details that show you how Milgard goes above and beyond the industry standard to meet customer needs and wants.

-Fifty Years of Experience

When you hear that someone has been doing something for 50 years, you assume they are good at what they do and they truly know what they are doing. Milgard is a company that was started in 1958. Their sole goal for all those decades was to be the best window and door manufacturer on the market. They want to provide reliable, quality windows that are crafted to meet unique architectural requirements. Since they have been striving towards those goals each and every day for the past 50 years, you can trust that they are a quality brand.

-Good Reviews

When you want to learn more about a company, one of the most telling things is to seek out former customers. What do people who installed Milgard replacement windows say about them? You will find plenty of reviews to examine and when you read that past customers have lower utility bills and high levels of satisfaction with their windows, you will have peace of mind that you are getting a high-quality brand in Milgard.

-Options

There are some window brands that only make wood windows or vinyl windows or one other style. But Milgard gives you options between varieties of window styles. You can buy aluminum, vinyl, fiberglass, and other types of replacement windows from Milgard. You can also get into lines that have slim profiles, windows that have even higher levels of sound control, and windows that are highly durable as well as lightweight. There are plenty of options to consider when you choose Milgard.

If you have decided that you need replacement windows for your home in Ventura, CA, we hope you will seriously consider the Milgard brand. You are welcome to stop by the Quality Windows showroom at 1430 S. Oxnard Blvd, Oxnard, CA 93030 so we can show you examples of the high-quality elements this brand holds. You can also give us a call at 805-984-5895 and we would be happy to answer all your questions.

The Benefits of Vinyl Windows Vs. Other Materials

When the time comes to replace your windows in Ventura, CA, you might consider vinyl windows as replacements. You will need to think through the options and recognize what you want from your new windows. You want something modern that will be energy efficient and lower your energy costs. There are many benefits in getting vinyl windows over other materials. Here are just a few to remember as you make your decision.

-Vinyl Windows are Scratch Free

When you get wood windows, you constantly have to worry about scratches, dents and other things happening to them. Vinyl windows, on the other hand, are scratch resistant.  The PVC vinyl used to make these versatile windows is strong and virtually self-healing.  They will look good no matter what happens to them.

-Vinyl Windows are Maintenance Free

Wood windows require regular maintenance such as scraping, sanding, staining or painting. Vinyl windows, on the other hand, are maintenance free. You can wash them off with soap and water every now and then, but other than that, they don’t take your time and attention from other things.

-Vinyl Windows are Energy Efficient

You can get higher energy efficiency in any new window, but vinyl windows are among the best. Vinyl windows often include double or even triple pane glass and between the layers, you can add a particular gas that gives them even high insulation values. Aluminum windows give you some energy efficient benefits in the glass region, but their material holds a lot of heat as well. Wood windows give you energy efficiency qualities, but the hot and cold temperatures often easily damage them.

-Vinyl Windows are Affordable

It’s hard to believe that vinyl windows are the least expensive option on the market because of their many benefits.  The materials and efficient manufacturing techniques create them, make them inexpensive and economical.  You can get energy efficiency, beauty, and a lower price all in one window material.

-Vinyl Windows Last Longer

Vinyl materials are long lasting and highly durable. They last longer than any other material because of the quality of the vinyl used to create them. They can endure extreme weather, intense heat, and everyday wear and tear. They can even be customized to your specifications so you get the exact windows you need for your specific needs.

If you are ready to replace the windows on your home, we encourage you to think about Ventura, CA vinyl windows for replacement options. If you’d like to discuss the benefits of vinyl windows, or you want us to come to your home for a free assessment, give Quality Windows & Doors a call at 805-984-5895. You can also stop by our showroom at 1430 S. Oxnard Blvd, Oxnard, CA 93030. We’re happy to go over the options with you and answer your questions. You can also see some of the vinyl window models in person to examine what might work best for your home. We have been placing windows in homes in Ventura, CA for the past 30 years and we’d love to do the same for you.

Milgard Essence Series Windows

Whether you are building a new home or working on replacing your old windows, Milgard has a great selection of windows within the Essence Series that can outfit your Ventura, CA home. The different styles under the Milgard name can brighten any home or room and they come in a number of materials such as wood, fiberglass, vinyl, and aluminum. The Essence Series offers beautiful wood windows that give you a natural look inside coupled with a fiberglass exterior frame. This revolutionary design has a variety of benefits.

  • Solid Wood Interior

When it comes to beauty and style, there is nothing like wood.  If you love the look of wood windows inside your house, when you get Milgard Essence windows, you get just that. You have a natural beauty in every room of your house and you don’t have to worry about any colors clashing with your existing décor. Wood looks good with anything and fits in anywhere.

  • Fiberglass Exterior

As much as you like wood, you likely don’t like the maintenance that comes with them. You have to scrape, paint, and stain them often in order to keep them looking nice on your Ventura, CA house. The Milgard Essence Series avoids all the hassle you normally get from wood windows by placing fiberglass frames on the exterior portion of the windows. You have 16 powder coated frame colors from which to choose and you no longer have to worry about time consuming upkeep.

  • Lifetime Warranty on Glass Breakage

Milgard Essence windows are so strong they come with a lifetime warranty on the glass breakage. This coverage is almost unheard of because glass breaks, that’s all there is to it. But the glass on these windows rarely breaks and if it does, you’re covered under this breakage coverage. That tells you that the company believes in its product enough to stand behind it. You can rest assured that your home is well protected by the strong glass on these windows. No storm or random baseball will shatter the glass as easily as it would another window.

  • Award Recognition

The Milgard Essence Series of wood windows received the Crystal Achievement Award for Most Innovative Window.  This recognition speaks to how well this window performs among its competitors throughout the industry.

When Milgard decided to create a better wood window, they re-imagined everything. These windows have become a popular choice for new construction and window replacement Ventura, CA projects. The timeless design has endless options that look great throughout any home. If you are interested in more details on Milgard windows or other types of windows, call Quality Windows at 805-984-5895. You can also stop by and see some of the windows yourself. We’re located at 1430 S. Oxnard Blvd, Oxnard, CA 93030. We are happy to answer all your questions.

Windows: Repair or Replace?

If you look at your windows in Thousand Oaks, CA and wonder if you need to do something about them, you have two general options. You can repair them or you can replace them. So which way do you want to go? Use this guide to help you decide.

Do your windows function well?

If your windows open and close nicely, they function well in that sense. If they get stuck often, they are not functioning properly. If you answered “no” to this question, you might want to consider replacing your windows instead of repairing them.

Are your windows comfortable?

If your old windows keep the heat and air conditioning inside your house and the outside air out, that’s great. Many old windows start to allow drafts into the house and give you hot air from outside when you don’t want it in the house. If your old windows do not keep the house at a comfortable temperature, you might want to consider replacing them.

Are the windows easy to maintain?

Your time is worth a lot and if you have to spend free time scraping, painting, and staining your windows every year, they are not easy to maintain. You want your windows to look nice so you do the work, but it would be much easier on your spare time to have windows that take less maintenance. If that is the way you feel, you may want to look into replacement windows Thousand Oaks, CA has to offer.

Are your old windows worth repairing?

You can repair and restore older windows so they are functional and beautiful again, but are they worth the cost and effort? If you have any rot, sagging frames, fogged glass and old hardware, it might be easier and more cost effective to replace the windows instead of trying to repair them.

Are your windows energy efficient?

Even if your windows keep your house comfortable, they may not be energy efficient. If they are letting air in or out, they are forcing your furnace and air conditioner to work harder. This shortens the life of those systems and causes you to pay more on your energy bills.

If you answered no to one of more of the above questions, you may want to consider replacing your old windows with new, functional, efficient models. Quality Windows & Doors has been installing high-quality replacement windows in Thousand Oaks, CA for over 30 years. If you want to see examples of the types of windows you could purchase, stop by our showroom at 1430 S Oxnard Blvd, Oxnard, CA 93030. Or give us a call at 805-984-5895 and invite us to your home so we can assess what would be best for your situation. We have a number of fine window manufacturers that help provide the design and efficiency solutions you require for your home’s style and needs. Call us today and let’s get started on your window replacement project in order to keep your home comfortable and beautiful.