1. Aren't all vinyl windows really about the same?
No. There are many different ways windows are manufactured and many different quality levels. Also, there are many different types of thermal glass systems. Both contribute to the overall performance and cost.
2. Why do you only install American brand windows?
American Inc. is an award-winning manufacturer that consistently puts out reliable, high quality window and patio door products which our customers love. And since they are a national brand, they are very reliable and convenient to work with.
In short, American brand is excellent, available and consistently satisfies homeowners.
3. What is the Energy Star label and why is it important?
The Energy Star label was created by the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U. S. Department of Energy (DOE) to help consumers quickly and easily identify windows, appliances, office equipment and other products that save energy. The Energy Star Windows Program is a voluntary partnership between the DOE and the fenestration industry to promote sales of energy efficient windows, doors and skylights.
According to the Department of Energy and the EPA:
a. In a typical house, over 40% of the annual energy budget is consumed by heating and cooling.
b. If all households and businesses in the United States bought only Energy Star labeled windows and other products instead of standard products over the next 15 years, our national energy budget would be reduced by approximately $100 billion.
c. The reduction in carbon dioxide emissions from these purchases would be equivalent to reducing gasoline consumption by 120 billion gallons, taking 17 million cars off the road, or preserving 142 million acres of trees for the next 15 years.
d. Energy Star labeled windows, doors, and skylights are 40 percent more efficient than the products required under the most common national building codes.
4. Will I really save energy on my heating and cooling costs?
By choosing WeatherGuard Windows you can cut your heating and cooling costs, help make your home comfortable and reduce air pollution all at the same time. Not a bad deal. In fact, your investment in WeatherGuard Windows will pay for itself over time, and then the savings is money in the bank every year. And, you'll be doing your part to help the environment at the same time.
5. Is there an organization that sets performance and quality standards for vinyl windows?
Yes. The American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) has established standards for structural integrity, air infiltration resistence and water infiltration resistance. In addition, The National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) establishes guidelines for thermal performance. Labels bearing the NFRC ratings are currently required in several states. (for more information see our Testing & Data page).
6. Are vinyl windows energy efficient?
Vinyl is a great insulator. WeatherGuard vinyl frames are very energy efficient, preventing energy-draining conduction of heat or cold through the frame, with an efficiency comparable to wood.
7. Are there advantages to vinyl over wood?
Yes, many. WeatherGuard vinyl windows are all custom made for a perfect fit. Most wood windows are standard size and won't fit without a great deal of construction or carpentry work. When WeatherGuard finishes the job, it's finished and beautiful. When wood windows are installed, the hard part of sanding, staining, patching and painting just begins.
Price. When comparing WeatherGuard premium vinyl windows with wood windows of equal quality, WeatherGuard vinyl windows are far less expensive, saving you money as well as time from maintenance.
Warranty. With WeatherGuard's exclusive vinyl replacement lifetime warranty, you are assured of no out-of-pocket expenses later. Most wood window warranties are for much shorter periods of time, involve prorations, and often are not transferrablel in the event you sell your home.
8. What is virgin vinyl?
Virgin vinyl is the term applied to vinyl that is extruded for the first time. Regrind is the term given to vinyl that has been extruded, then the parts are ground up into small "pellets" and can be re-extruded. The implication is that "virgin vinyl" is purer or superior to reground vinyl. As a thermo plastic, PVC can be reprocessed, typically, around three times with little degradation to the compound. After that, additional processing "uses up" some of the lubricants and other additives that are used in the extrusion process. WeatherGuard frames, sashes and other major window parts are extruded from virgin vinyl.
9. What is uPVC? Does WeatherGuard Windows have it?
Yes. The American vinyl extrusions used by WeatherGuard are processed with uPVC. uPVC stands for unplasticized polyvinyl chloride. It is an old term brought over by European extruders. Low quality PVC formulas contain plasticizers to aid in the extrusion process. These plasticizers often "migrate" out of a finished product over time, leaving it brittle with a tendency to turn yellow. New technology formulas have been developed that do not use (or require) plasticizers in rigid extrusions. Today, to differentiate products made with the newer, more advanced formulas (and without plasticizers) they began calling them uPVC.
10. What kind of maintenance do vinyl windows require?
WeatherGuard vinyl windows are virtually maintenance free, requiring no finishing upon installation and no periodic painting or sealing. They cannot rot, rust, pit or corrode and are unaffected by moisture, salt air, pollution and airborne chemicals. If they ever require cleaning, simply wiping with a damp cloth is sufficient.
11. What can I use if I really need to clean my vinyl windows?
Usually a few drops of a mild liquid cleaner in a bucket of water is sufficient. If you have more stubborn build-up, the following household cleaners work well: Formula 409, Ajax Liquid Cleaner, Murphy's Oil Soap, Lysol Cleaner, Soft Scrub, or vinegar and water. The following cleaners or types of cleaners should NOT be used on vinyl; Clorox, Pine Power, Ivory, Grease Relief, Tide Detergent, nail polish remover (acetone).
12. Can I paint or stain my windows?
One of the benefits of vinyl windows is never needing to strip, paint or stain them. Painting is not recommended, as painting your vinyl windows can void your warranty.
13. I like the maintenance-free characteristics of vinyl, but I also like the look of a wood interior. Is a woodgrain look available on vinyl windows?
With WeatherGuard Windows it is! Our window interiors include not only the basic colors - white and beige, but also Light Oak, Dark Oak and Cherry woodgrain finishes. These durable woodgrain finishes combine the elegant look of wood with all the advantages of maintenance-free vinyl.
14. Is the interior woodgrain finish durable and long lasting?
Yes. Woodgrain finishes are a time-tested product throughout Europe and America. They have proven themselves to resist fading, chipping, peeling, and blistering. Our manufacturer, American Inc., uses only the highest quality woodgrain laminate (10 mils thick) and back them with a lifetime warranty. They add warmth to any architectural motif or window style and are designed to provide a lifetime of maintenance-free beauty.
15. Is it true that most window manufacturers do not offer any woodgrains at all, let alone a variety of colors?
Indeed. The equipment is quite expensive and involves a tremendous amount of technical precision. The process involves complex calculations designed to custom bond the woodgrain material to the individual extrusion.
16. Do I have to replace my windows with the same style window that's already in my home, or is there an alternative?
Just because you have one style of window in your home now doesn't mean you have to replace it with the same style. With the wide variety of window styles, shapes, sizes, and colors available today with WeatherGuard, it's easy to reflect your own personal taste. Consider replacing those three double hung windows in the front of your house with a bay or bow window, or adding a garden window in the kitchen.
17. Will it be easy to clean the glass on my new windows?
WeatherGuard Windows are designed to make cleaning a snap. The double-hung and slider windows have a latch to let them easily tilt or swing into your home so you can clean the sash. Our casement windows crank open to 90 degrees, allowing you to conveniently clean them from inside your home. Also, if you choose to have grids with your windows, the grids will be internal, so cleaning the windows won't be hindered by them.
18. What happens if the thermal seal of the glass goes bad?
Every WeatherGuard glass unit has a non-prorated lifetime warranty against seal failure. We replace it. No questions asked.
19. What do U-values and R-values really mean?
U-values and R-values are actually different sides of the same coin. U-value represents the amount of heat that transfers through a wall, window, roof or other surface. The lower the U-value, the more energy efficient a material is. R-values are the direct opposite. R-values measure an object's resistance to heat flow - the higher the better. The higher a material's R-value, the lower its U-value will be, and the less energy it will lose. To keep everything straight, you can convert U-values to R-values by dividing the U-value into 1.
20. What is condensation, and what can I do about it?
Condensation occurs when humid air comes in contact with a surface that is cooler than the air itself. Condensation on interior surfaces of windows and doors occurs because of high humidity and insufficient air exchange inside the home. In many older homes there were gaps in the windows where drafts could be felt and air would flow. This exchange of air, in many cases, was sufficient enough to prevent condensation from forming. The high-performance windows of today are designed to be air tight to reduce heat loss. In winter, when your high-quality vinyl windows are efficiently keeping cold air out and warm moist air in, condensation may appear as fog or moisture on the glass. This is because the window is reducing heat flow to the outside and preventing the warming of the exterior surface above dew-point. Condensation does not indicate a problem with your windows; quite the contrary. It means you're holding in warm air like never before. But you're holding in humidity, too. That's the problem.
You create humidity every time you cook, shower, clean, or merely breathe inside your home. Other contributors to household humidity are humidifiers, water pans on radiators or wood stoves, kerosene heaters, drying laundry, and house plants.
The basic rules of thumb says that at 20 to 40 degrees outside and 70 degrees inside, the humidity in your home must be below 40% to avoid condensation. At 10 to 20 outside, your humidity must be below 35%.
Here's what you can do to reduce the humidity that causes condensation:
. When using your bathrooms, kitchen or laundry room, turn on any built in fans. It is also a good
idea to install an exhaust fan in your attic.
. Use a dehumidifier to remove excess moisture from the air.
. Every day, open a door or window briefly to air out your home. Opening fireplace dampers and basement or attic louvers will also work.
. In cold weather, move your house plants to a seldom-used room.
. Waterproof your basement floors and walls with moisture-sealing paint.
21. Can I install custom-made windows myself?
Yes, but the better question might be "Should you install custom-made windows yourself?" Retrofitting a home with high performance windows can produce significant energy savings and improved comfort and beauty. However, when the right window is installed incorrectly or, worse yet, the wrong window is installed incorrectly energy savings will be few, structure and furnishings may be damaged, and the occupants' safety may be jeopardized. Installation of a vinyl window is not a task for a beginner or amatuer do-it-yourselfer. Windows need to be installed plumb, level and square. Existing (and even new!) houses can have out of square window openings. Concentrated loads can distort window frames and cause a poor fit that allow air and/or water infiltration. Professional installers have all the necessary training and equipment to do the job right, like bending exterior trim panels to make them more visually appealing. And measuring the size of the window is extremely important. If your measurements are off by as little as ¼", a custom-made window may not fit. We strongly recommend that you let a professional do the job for you.
22. Who will perform the actual installation of my windows?
WeatherGuard's own factory-trained craftsmen will install your new windows with pride and expertise. This will ensure both a quality installation and a beautiful job every time.
23. What if there is a problem with my windows or the installation?
All of our windows are backed by (3) warranties: A Lifetime Window Warranty from American, A Lifetime Glass Breakage Warranty from American, as well as an installation warranty. So you will be well protected.
24. How long does a window installation usually take?
Most homes with up to 12 to 15 windows can be completed in one day, including clean up. Some jobs may require finishing up on a second day.
25. What preparations need to be made in order to install the new windows?
We ask that you remove any curtains, blinds or window decorations, and that you try to make so room so that we can have easy access to the windows. We will be as neat as possible and will not leave trash or any kind of mess at the work site.
26. What about the old windows and all the mess from the installation?
All job debris is removed and the job is cleaned up very well inside and out.
27. How long will it take before my windows are ready to install?
Usually within 3-4 weeks.
28. Can you install year round? Even in cold weather?
Yes, and the cold season is when homeowners experience the greatest benefits. WeatherGuard trained installers have methods that allow for year round installation without harm to your home or comfort.
29. How can we finance our purchase?
WeatherGuard has many finance options which can usually help out any family, whatever their individual needs may be.
30. Are WeatherGuard Windows a wise investment?
Yes, for a variety of reasons. WeatheGuard Windows pay for themselves with energy savings, increased comfort and beauty, reduced sound transmission and their low maintenance characteristics! Plus, our transferrable warranty enables you to sell your home quicker when you are ready to relocate. And according to Remodeling Magazine's 2003 Cost Vs. Value Report, the average replacement window project in America yields an 84% return upon resale.
31. Why are your prices so low?
People often wonder what could be wrong when the prices we give are thousands of dollars lower than those they've received from some other local dealer. The windows we offer here are time-tested premium quality American windows offered all over the United States . Our prices are low for two primary reasons:
a. Our progressive marketing strategies. WeatherGuard discovered long ago that the old business model of spending vast sums through conventional advertising campaigns (i.e. newspaper, TV, radio, yellow pages, telemarketing, etc.) is not only costly but directly impacts the homeowner by driving up the cost of overhead. We decided not to do this. Instead, we developed a grass-roots marketing approach that keeps our advertising budget far below that of other companies, enabling us to offer homeowners the high performance windows they have always wanted for their homes (but could not afford) at extremely attractive prices.
b. Specialization. Unlike general contractors, who generally do a little bit of a whole lot of different products, WeatherGuard specializes in replacement windows, installing several thousand units year round. This has enabled us to negotiate special volume pricing from our manufacturer. We then pass those savings on to you.
© 2010 WeatherGuard Windows and Doors
6856 W. Lake Rd. Indianapolis, IN 46214
Phone: 317.387.0821 | Fax: 317.387.0835