Older windows will start to develop problems. Homeowners might notice noise pollution, drafts, water damage, or higher energy bills. Other common issues include difficult window operation, stressful maintenance, and damaged glass or frames. Any one of these problems indicates it is time for new windows. But which type of new window should homeowners choose—new construction windows or retrofit windows? Here is a quick breakdown of each type of window and which options might be best for the home.
What are New Construction Windows?
New construction windows are exactly what the name implies. These are products contractors use when building a new home or making an addition to the home. New construction windows go in while the studs of the home are exposed and installers nail the fin directly into the frame.
Homeowners can use new construction windows for home renovation. But it means the process for installation will be a bit more labor-intensive. During installation, the crew will need to remove exterior materials around the window to expose the studs. Most homeowners choose new construction windows when they are looking to change the size or shape of their new windows.
What is Retrofit Windows?
Retrofit windows are a much easier and faster home improvement. With these products, installers do not have to remove any exterior finish work. Retrofit windows, also known as replacement windows, are manufactured to exact specifications to fit inside the existing window opening. And installers will replace only the window and not the frame or any other structures—saving on both time, complexity, and labor costs.
This home improvement is ideal for homeowners working with a limited budget or on a tight deadline. If a homeowner is happy with the current size of their windows, then it stands to reason that retrofit windows are a really good, more affordable solution. It is a straightforward swap. And the homeowners do not have to worry about matching, replacing, or refinishing any of the exterior work on the home. And with retrofit windows, hardly any other area of the house will be disturbed. Aside from the upgrade in quality, it will be almost impossible to tell the difference between the old and new windows. And ultimately they will save time and money by choosing retrofit windows.
That said, there are some disadvantages to choosing retrofit windows. As mentioned, these installations are limited to the size of the old windows. Also, if the frame of the window is no longer square, retrofit windows will not fix the issue and will likely develop leaks. Lastly, homeowners need to get retrofit windows from a company they can trust to do the job right. Otherwise, their “new windows” will likely require expensive repairs in the near future.
Deciding between new construction and retrofit windows can be difficult. And making the right choice is extremely important. For help deciding which options might be best for your home, contact our window experts today with all of your questions and concerns. We can help you find the right products for your home and budget.