f you are researching windows to install in your home and come across one called a bow window, don’t worry. It’s not a typo. Bay windows and bow windows are very similar, but not identical. If you are unsure which one best suits your space, learn more about what each has to offer.
</p><p><strong>Bay </strong></p><p>A bay window isConcord a three-paneled window that juts from your home, and typically features a window seat or storage bench below it, on the inside of the house. It is an attempt to bring the outside indoors. By creating the illusion that while in your living room, you’re simultaneously in your yard, the bay window creates a unique space in your room and eye appeal.</p><p><strong>Bow </strong></p><p>Bow windows are typically larger than bay windows, but serve a very similar purpose. Usually, bow windows have five panels, which cause them to curve like a bow instead of appearing more rigid like a bay window. The size makes them a prominent feature in your room, so it’s important that you have the wall space to incorporate them, and that you are comfortable with the light and exposure they allow.</p><p><strong>Customizing </strong></p><p>Once you have decided between bay and bow windows, the fun begins! You can customize with finishes such as:</p><p></p><ul> <li>Wood color</li> <li>Glass type</li> <li>Hardware</li> <li>Grilles</li> <li>Screens</li></ul><p>These choices will dramatically change the look of the window, so before you commit, envision the window with all of your selections. Have a good sense for the finished product before you head home. Otherwise, you may have an unpleasant surprise when the window arrives for installation. Once the window is in, you also have the opportunity to create a new internal space.
About Double Hung WindowsVinyl has become a viable rival for traditional materials such as wood over the years. It has proven to be comparable to, if not more efficient in many cases, the use of windows and doors, and offers design flexibility, minimal maintenance, and efficiency in energy and cost savings.The word "window" takes it's origin from the Norse word "vindauga" which loosely translates to "eye for the wind". The window was meant to be both functional as well as aesthetically pleasing.After the end of World War II, there was a shortage of materials such as wood, aluminum and steel so the Germans, in their efforts to rebuild, began to use a vinyl framing, which was a new thermoplastic. By 1959, BF Goodrich Company, a vinyl resin manufacturer decided to try their hand at vinyl window production, and offered sleek designs similar to that found in wood or metal window frames. Americans found that these were much more readily acceptable designs, compared to that of the smaller and bulkier German designs.Designs improved and popularity grew; sales of vinyl grew in the mid 1990's for both new construction and remodeling by 125%. Most window manufacturers offer vinyl windows as an option along with their more traditional wooden and metal frames. Innovations in vinyl formulas have helped to improve flexibility in designs.With improvements having been made over the last few decades to the manufacturing process of vinyl windows, maintenance is practically non-existent and non-essential. If the product requires a bit of cleaning, common household cleaners will make short work of the task, leaving the window as good as new. The average life span of a vinyl window varies depending on the use of the item, but on average warranties are offered for 20 to 30 years. To ensure the quality of the window's construction and performance, most vinyl windows produced today are certified by a third-party company and independent laboratory testing is performed in accordance with stringent industry standards.Some of the newer innovations made to vinyl are the addition of sawdust and cellular foam. The wood mixed with the vinyl has made a new option of embossing the vinyl so that it looks like wood and can even be stained or painted like wood. The use of cellular foam has made huge differences in the shapes and appearances of the trims. These are great to use as they do not rot or decay at all. Vinyl windows and other products made by the same process are color fast because the color is not just on the surface but is extruded through the entire product. The product is not only rot and rust free, but is impervious to pests like ants and termites. When made properly, the product also contains UV inhibitors to protect from sun damage and cracking or splitting.Windows made of vinyl framing are suitable for most building needs but cannot be used in high rise buildings or in places where there are consistently high winds. Tests on the windows are conducted to determine the limits the vinyl windows can withstand safely. Over the years the cost of vinyl windows has become much more affordable due to the popularity and easy accessibility to the goods required to manufacture the vinyl or vinyl composites. As a result they have become a cost effective alternative to metal and wooden frames.
Bay WindowWith the price of heating and cooling rising almost daily I started looking at my old windows and wondering if it wouldn't be worth it to replace them with newer, more energy efficient ones. I had read about Energy Star® Ratings and how they are (supposedly) indicative of the most energy efficient appliances and building materials available.I started to do a little internet research to see if it would be a good investment to install more efficient windows in our townhouse. I wanted to find out if they could really pay for themselves and how long the payback period would take.After a little searching I found a simple calculation that will yield your payback period for installing new energy efficient windows.According to Energy Star, "An average household spends over 40 percent of its annual energy budget on heating and cooling costs. You could reduce those bills by up to 15 percent with ENERGY STAR® windows."We can break that claim down into a simple formula:(Your average monthly energy bill (if you have gas and electric just add them together) X.4 ) X.15 = projected savings per month. Divide this number into the cost of upgrading your windows and you have how many months it would take to recoup your investment.To make a long story short, projected savings are 6% of your monthly energy bill.For our house the calculation looks something like this:Average month's electric bill: $141.20* Times 6% X.06 = Avg energy savings per month $8.472Cost to replace 6 windows with Energy Star windows: Approx $330 (at the low end) per window X 6 windows = $1980 (if you have special tax rebates available in your area subtract those from your total).Next I figured out the projected payback period:$1980 / $8.472 = 233 months or 19.5 years (Update: since I wrote this article the Energy tax credit has been phased back in, so you would subtract the $1500 credit available (0r 30% of the cost of the windows not including instalation costs and take whichever is smaller) before dividing by monthly usage ratio. In the example you would take 1980-1500 = 480 and divide by 8.472 = 56.66 months until payback).Based on my math the investment without the tax credit hardly seemed practical. I calculated this based on costs which include installing the windows myself. Now including the tax credit in our calculation the payback period is 4.72 years, making it a very worthwhile investment, to get that return on an investment I'd have to get a 50% return on your money....pretty good huh?)You can take this same calculation to decide between replacing your windows with cheaper ones or going for the added expense of putting Energy Star rated windows in, just subtract the cost of the cheaper windows from the cost of the Energy Star windows and see the projected payout period differential.While the additional expense doesn't seem worth it for my project, perhaps with better tax rebates available in your area, and/or a higher energy bill it may be worthwhile for you. Just remember before making any major purchase, first DO THE MATH!*Note: I already knew my average monthly bill, but you can get a fairly accurate estimate of the average for your home by calling your local utility and asking them about their monthly budget plan. The budget plan amount for your house and family will be a fairly accurate estimate of your monthly energy bill customized to your home size, number of occupants, and your geographic area.
Wonderful Window DesignMake Money by Saving MoneyMany homeowners seek to increase the property value of their homes by remodeling or adding on. One of the best and less expensive ways to do so is to install vinyl replacement windows. The impact of the appearance can be sufficient reason in some cases to make this all the home improvement you need. Additionally, there are so many other reasons to install them.BenefitsNot only will you save money, but you can benefit from the energy efficiency. Everyone knows windows and doors are where most of the heat in the winter, and cool air in the summer, escapes. Vinyl windows will keep the heat and cold right where they belong - out of your home. Your energy bills will go down significantly when you install them. In some cases you could see a savings of almost thirty percent. The old, drafty houses with single pane windows become cozy and warm homes like they were meant to be.What to Look ForWhen shopping for these windows for your home, there are some terms with which you need to become familiar. The first is the U-factor. The U-factor lets you know how quickly heat can escape. The lower the U-factor, the better the windows are at keeping heat in the home. You will generally find vinyl windows with U-factors between 0.2 and 1.2.The R-factor is just the opposite. This is the number which tells you how well the window will act as an insulation barrier. You will want this number to be high. The higher the number, the better the window is doing its job.When comparing vinyl windows from different manufacturers, you should also look at the solar heat gain coefficient or SHGC. The SHGC will tell you how capable the window is of blocking the heat of the sun. The range can be anywhere from 1.0 which is the worst, to zero - zero being the best.You may also see the air leakage rating listed on a tag or the window's box. Of course, you want this number to be as low as possible. It only makes sense to keep as much air out or in, as the case may be.InstallationYou can install vinyl windows on your own. The job will be slightly complicated for certain window frames. However, you can special order your vinyl windows to fit the existing window measurements. This will allow you to remove the old window and with a few quick adjustments put in the new one. An entire house of 10 to 12 windows can actually be completed in a day. You will find that the addition of vinyl windows is one of the best and least expensive steps to improving the value of your home.