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 isPlainview 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.
What Are the Benefits of Vinyl Windows?Vinyl 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.
Go Green And Save Energy - Install Vinyl WindowsWith 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.
Vinyl Replacement Window Reviews - Buyer's Guide
Let's look at some of the basics of bay windows:
1. How to Recognize Them
This basically is what the definition of a bay window is. Bay windows are combinations of three or more windows projecting outward from a room. There are also different variations of bay windows; for example, bow windows are a variation of bay windows that is made up of four or more window units joined at equal angles to form a curve. So, a bay window is basically any window that extends out from the house and forms a bay.
2. Why to Choose Them
There are many reasons why you would want to choose a bay window for your home, so let's just look at a few of the most obvious ones. Bay windows are great, and you should get them because they maximize space and take advantage of multiple views. A bay window will also make a room appear more open and spacious, increases the flow of light into a home, and can add counter area to a room. So in other words, you get more space, light, and distinction.
5. What To Look For
When you go out and shop for your bay windows, besides the things you will determine through your personal choices and tastes (such as materials) you will want to get a bay or bow windows that has good NFRC ratings. So when shopping, compare NFRC ratings.
These ratings are important because they indicate the efficiency. When it comes to U-Factor, the lower the better, and the lower number also means the less you'll spend heating and cooling. It's an easy, accurate way to compare the energy efficiency of windows and patio doors. So use these ratings to help you determine which bay window is going to be the best for your house.