Replacing Your Windows? Don’t be “Blind” Sided!

Replacement windows are one of the most popular and energy saving home improvement projects.  Every year thousands of Central Ohio residents replace old, drafty windows with new energy efficient windows.  The Federal Energy Tax Credit has kept replacement window companies busy for the last several years.  Recently though, we have received a rash of calls from consumers in Columbus inquiring about having their blinds or shades cut down to fit their new windows.  In a few cases they had just recently replaced their blinds and when the new windows were installed they wouldn’t fit.

Anytime one of Home Source’s window fashion designers becomes aware that a consumer is also considering replacing their windows we advise this: First, replace the windows THEN we’ll help you select new window fashions.  Apparently there are some replacement window companies that will tell homeowners anything to get the order.  More and more often they are being told “sure your blinds or shades will fit right in the new windows.”  When they don’t, it’s too late and in many cases, their shades can’t be cut down to fit the newly installed windows.  Even when some blinds can be made smaller the cost to do so far exceeds what is prudent given the age and condition of the blind.

Additionally, many consumers are confused about their new windows.  Many believe that since the salesperson sold them “low-e” glass for their windows they no longer need to be concerned about UV damage and fading.  First, make sure you know whether they are selling you high, moderate or low solar heat gain windows.  There’s a huge difference in the 3 types and only one is advisable for a heat dependent climate like we have here in Columbus.  Second, while these windows do deflect some UV at least 30% or more still enters your room.  To evaluate whether concern is warranted we recommend the following test: take a piece of construction paper and turn down one corner.  Place a couple of paperclips at the edges to hold the fold in place.  Place the paper on an end table near a window and forget it.  After about two weeks remove the clips and fold the corner back.  What do you see?  Is the original color of the paper evident?  You may be surprised how much fading has occurred.  Don’t panic!  Construction paper is very porous therefore it fades more quickly than most home furnishings.  However, if fading on the paper is evident your furnishings will eventually become faded and damaged if steps aren’t taken to control the amount of UV light entering the room.

At Home Source we have window treatments that can block as much as 99% of the UV rays without making the room dark.  We even have some products, such as Hunter Douglas Silhouettes, that block 88% of the UV even with the vanes open!

While you’re doing your homework about replacement windows don’t stop there!  Consider your existing window fashions or budget for replacements if they should be necessary.  If you’d like more information feel free to stop by the store to speak with a consultant.