Knowing who is going to install your new replacement windows is just as important as the product you have chosen to be installed. The quality of the installation will determine the long term performance of your new windows. There are many quality windows on the market today, made from a variety of materials. Wood, wood/clad, vinyl, fiberglass, and composite material – each with unique, and specific installation requirements. Every manufacturer has extensive installation instructions for their windows. The key, is whether the installer follows those instructions.
Many window companies provide installation classes for installation teams. This way an installer knows the proper place to shim the window, type of installation to use and the appropriate caulk to apply. Some manufacturers also mandate that only their dealers or affiliates can install their windows. Renewal by Andersen has that requirement. This assures the manufacturer that their product is being properly installed and homeowners can rely on a single source for the manufacture, sale, installation and service of their new windows.
It should be noted that because there are different methods of installation, there are different skill sets required from installers. If an installation requires all new interior trim, stool, and apron, an installer that has a trim carpentry background is desirable. When choosing a window company, you should ask about the experience level of the installers that will be on your job.
Installers may be employees of the window company or they may be sub-contractors. Installers that are employees tend to more closely follow company protocol during an installation. In most cases their installations are more closely supervised. While sub-contractors can be equally qualified, it is important to verify that they are fully insured and have worker’s compensation for the state(s) in which they work.
A good installation team will treat your home as if it were their own home. No smoking, good exterior clean up, vacuuming the interior and even washing the new windows is a nice finishing touch.
By Jay L. Bachman, Managing Partner