Woodland Windows and Doors Blog

This is where we will post relevant articles, information, and how-to's related to all things windows and doors. Check back often for updates and new information!

Happy Thanksgiving

Woodland continues to be grateful each day and each year for our friends, family and the community of customers who support our business -- for 50th years now. We hope you have a very special Thanksgiving Day with your loved ones. 

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Black Windows Trending

Black Windows Elmhurst, IL

Have you noticed that black windows are replacing white windows for home renovations and new homes? Now offered by most manufacturers, black is perfect for accentuating the clean simple lines todays homeowners prefer.

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Fall Open House – Celebrating 50 Years

We hope you’ll join us next Saturday, October 5th at Woodland Windows and Doors at the corner of Lake and Gary for our 50th Anniversary Fall Open House. We invite you to learn about what’s new for windows and doors, gather with neighbors, family and friends, or enjoy some fun with your kids.

Why visit an Open House?

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Black Windows For All Home Styles

Modern Farm Style - Andersen Black Windows

You know you’ve been admiring all those home renovations or new homes that with the black windows but thinking, that would never work for our home, it’s too traditional. Look again, those black window sashes and frames are installed in all types of homes, craftsman, farm, ranch and yes, modern. For many manufacturers black is offered as a standard color and for virtually all manufacturers black, even multiple shades of black come as finishing options for your interior, exterior or both.

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Replacement Window Divided Lite Options

Architectural detail defines a home and selecting the right window grilles or grids expands the character of your home. The grille pattern on these Marvin casement windows located in a small laundry room allows the eye to move between the outdoor scenery and back to the simple wood detailing on the window glass that creates a warm feeling in the room. The designer boldly mixed window grille patterns on these side-by-side windows in order to accommodate a narrow window. The result is aesthetically just right.

Marvin Casement Window

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Condensation and Ice Buildup on Windows in Extreme Weather

Our extreme cold weather can wreak havoc on our daily living. Near the top of that list is the nuisance of ice and condensation build up on our windows. We’re here to tell you that it’s something to attend to but not that uncommon in freezing temperatures.

With extreme cold outside temperatures, beads of moisture or condensation can accumulate on the inside glazing of your windows. Then a layer of frost or ice develops on the glass or in the corners near the window frame, it’s natural to worry. What are the causes, and if your windows have this problem, what can be done?  

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Marvin Integrity Windows & Doors for Gorgeous Condominium

 Chicago Condominium

Leave it to the owners of this gorgeous downtown Chicago condominium to select Marvin Integrity ‘ebony’ finish for their new windows and doors. Their choice of sleek casements, awnings and an expansive patio door system, all contemporary looks, gives the individual units and the building a fresh look.

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Modern Window Designs

Andersen E-Series Windows

The owner of this St Charles home who has worked in the building industry for years, selected Andersen E-Series modern windows and doors to connect the inside of his home to the natural landscapes outdoors. His floor to ceiling glass designs could be perfectly executed with the design ability to line up jambs that maintain perfect sightlines to the outside. E-Series allowed him flexibility beyond the structure to include custom walnut interior finishes and black aluminum exterior design choices. This amazing project is a perfect illustration of how frameless glass expanses, narrow profiles and the special awareness of one’s environment all come together to create a perfect modern home.

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Condo Building Window Upgrades – Don’t Just Replace, Upgrade

Condominiums are a great investment for single people living alone, young couples starting out and the elderly needing assistance. Condo ownership is a less costly alternative to single family homes from the sales price, maintenance and improvements. The best way to protect your investment in a condominium is to know how old the complex is and when the systems and structural components were repaired or replaced. If the building is more than 30 years old it’s likely that the windows have been replaced once or need to be upgraded, not just replaced, but upgraded. Who is responsible to replace your condo windows depends on your HOA, however for most HOAs, the homeowner is responsible unless there are special circumstances.

Chicago IL Town Home

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1918 Hits

Historic Home Window Replacement – Don’t Spoil the Neighborhood

Mission Style Historic Home

Replacing a home’s old windows, especially in historical neighborhoods, with bad replacements has a lasting effect on the curb appeal of your home and the neighborhood. Windows define a house as the most prominent feature that can add or detract from your home’s style. It was no surprise then when the new owner of a classic 1899 mission style home in a Chicago suburb, a professional architect, readily spotted the offending replacements as upsetting the rhythm of the house and set about to restore the home’s original façade.

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Infinity Premier Partner

Woodland Windows & Doors has proudly featured Marvin products for years offering a full selection of their three brands, Marvin, Integrity and Infinity. The Infinity brand is a favorite replacement window among remodelers and homeowners alike. It’s designed to have the look and feel of traditional wood frames, but with modern features and low maintenance.

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Condo Window Replacement Options

Foggy glass, rotting wood, shrinking caulk, or leaking windows are all signs that your windows likely need replacing. When you own a condo and belong to a Homeowner Association (HOA) what options do you have for replacing the windows in your unit? Do you need pre-approvals from your HOA?

Condo Window & Door Replacement Project

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Marvin Replacement Windows & Doors This Spring

When we think about remodeling our homes, we imagine a kitchen, bathroom, more space or maybe an outdoor patio. Few people dream about remodeling their home’s infrastructure, windows, doors, siding, heating and cooling systems, that sort of thing. If you’re thinking about remodeling your home, start by improving your infrastructure with Marvin replacement windows and doors this Spring.

170616 Kroiss 193

Marvin Replacement Windows

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1191 Hits

Black Windows Are Now Widely Available

No longer just a trend, Black windows are now offered by more manufacturers because they can be as versatile as white.

Overlook Remodel Ultimate Casement Windows 1 copy

Marvin Ultimate

White windows have long been a standard choice, yet increasingly black, once used as a focal point color, now black is also seen as a neutral window color. White windows are still selected for traditional homes and black is increasingly selected for a variety of styles from chic modern to historic renovations. For example, black windows, black gutters and fascia complements the red or brown brickwork of many old buildings.

The fact is that the color black is elegant and goes with everything the same way white compliments other colors and a variety of design choices.

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26053 Hits

Wishing You and Your Family a Glorious Easter

From All of Us at Woodland Windows & Doors

 

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A Guide to Replacing Windows to Add Natural Light and Views

Architects know that a secret to designing beautiful homes is to create spaces that direct the eye to a view. When you enter a home or a room that has been well designed there will be a focal point like a painting, or a glimpse into an adjoining room, or a high ceiling. The most coveted view of all is a view of the outdoors. Yet, we live in older homes, often devoid of views from most rooms.

When it’s time to replace the windows in your home be sure to create rooms with views. Take a close look at your home’s windows and doors. Do they look undersized or do your walls look barren without windows?

Bernsten After 0077

Chicago Suburb - New Windows (After)

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Window Condensation in Winter

 

Why does condensation appears on my windows and what can be done?oldwindows condensation blog72

Condensation on your windows operates on the same principle as steamed up bathroom mirrors after taking a shower. The steam from the shower is too heavy to be carried away in the air, so it condenses onto the coldest surfaces in the room and you get a steamy mirror. Likewise, if the moisture in your home is too dense to remain in the air, it too will condense onto the coldest surfaces in your home, which are most likely your windows.

In a nutshell, if you see condensation on your windows you most likely have too much humidity in your home and you’ll want to focus on reducing the sources of humidity. Typically, winter is more troublesome than summer when it comes to condensation because you home is closed up to keep the heat in. Warmer air holds more moisture than cold air, which is why condensation will appear on your window more often during the winter months.

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Window and Door Replacement Designs with Purpose

 

Walk into a beautiful space, a classic museum, an elegant hotel, a swank lobby or a beautiful home and we’re struck by how we feel.

Design should express and reinforce the essential idea of the space. The room’s angles, ceiling heights, architectural details, focal points or the outside landscape.

Integrity ClerestoryWindows copy

Integrity by Marvin Windows

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1055 Hits

Remodeling Tips at Open House

Thinking about remodeling your home and replacing your old windows? Come to our Open House this Saturday, September 30th and pick up a copy of the remodeling guide with tips about replacing your windows. 

This Old House Remodeling Tips for Replacing Windows

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Why Visit an Open House?

 

We hope you’ll join us Saturday, September 30th at Woodland Windows and Doors at the corner of Lake and Gary for our Fall Open House. We invite you to learn about what’s new for windows and doors, gather with neighbors, family and friends, or enjoy some fun with your kids.

open house banner copy 1

Why visit an Open House?

Woodland sponsors the Open House because we’re completely dedicated to showcasing and educating the community about the beautiful and functional products available for your new home or your home improvement. We also like to hear directly from customer’s what products and services you need from us. What better way than to open the doors for people to leisurely explore, talk with experts and learn regardless of your immediate intentions to buy?

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Remodel with Fresh Modern Looks in Window and Doors

A consistent theme among customers looking at windows and doors for their remodeling projects is to profess that they want a modern look. After talking and showing them various products, we begin to understand what ‘a modern look’ actually means to most people.

What they’re usually describing is the desire for an up to date, fresh look that is fashionable. Although it’s very important when remodeling to stay true to the style of the home, there is a lot of latitude to replace windows and doors with products that will modernize your home.

Marvin dining window and patio door tight

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Condo Window Replacement and Qualified Installers

Leaking condominium windows are not always obvious, that is of course, until the problem is hard to ignore. Most CC&Rs (Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions) assign windows as the homeowner’s responsibility, yet when leaking windows become a structural concern the association typically assumes the project of replacing the windows in the entire building.

While the question of who will pay for the new windows is important, if you have a system wide problem, the question is who will diagnose and solve the problem? The common expense and unit costs can be determined after project estimates are obtained.

BayMenHOA

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Replacing Single Pane Windows

One of the greatest window innovations is the addition of Low-E Glass and gas filled insulated glass units (IGUs). That improvement happened back in 1981 roughly 35 years ago. So, it’s hard to imagine all these years later that there are still so many older homes with single pane windows that can’t take advantage of this technology.

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1061 Hits

Foggy Windows? Condensation or A Broken Window Seal.

As soon as fall breaks toward winter and outside temperatures drop, some windows in your home may appear a bit cloudy. Depending on where the fog is occurring, the problem may be as simple as excess moisture developing due to the difference in indoor and outdoor temperature or it might be more serious because the window seal is failing.

WindowCondensation 1

 

Condensation on the Glass Surface

Condensation on glass surfaces happens, for example, on a hot humid day when moisture may accumulate on the exterior side of your windows. Likewise, on a very cold day, moisture can build up on the interior side of your windows. Condensation on your windows can be worse when the outside temperature is below the dew point of the indoor air. Water or frost appears when warm moist air comes in contact with colder dry air.

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6834 Hits

Window Replacement Remodeling Ideas that Enhance

Replacing strategically selected windows during your remodel can significantly enhance your entire project. Have you ever been invited to see your neighbor’s or a friend’s newly remodeled kitchen and what you see are updated appliances, cabinets, countertops, floors and freshly painted walls? What you’re seeing is very typical and would be more accurately called a kitchen replacement, not a remodel. The same thing happens with window replacement. A home’s windows are old, inefficient, inoperable, or badly worn and the homeowner replaces them with a new replica of the old windows. Like the new kitchen, the new windows look and function better, but the space hasn’t improved. A better way to get the most out of replacing your windows is to focus on enhancing – improving the quality of your environment by intensifying and amplifying the effect of your windows.

If you're remodeling, replacing windows can significantly enhance your overall project.

Marvin StackedKitchenWindows

Marvin Windows

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Replacement Window Installation – No Shortcuts Allowed

 

You’ve just spent months, if not years making the decision to replace your leaky inefficient windows. You’ve taken the leap and selected the best windows that your budget could manage. Now comes one more decision, which may be the biggest one you’ll make – who will install your new windows and what is their installation process? Remember this -no shortcuts allowed.

Window Installation WWD

Full Frame Installation

Before signing a sales order for your replacement windows, select an installer and take the time to see at least one finished installations. Know the proper steps to install your type of window, for your particular home. Before you sign the installation contract read the detail.

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My Condo Windows Leak - Now What?

You loved the place and could afford it. You bought the home of your dreams and moved in. Then came the first winter and the windows leak, air, water, heat and anything else that can pass through the cracks. What are you going to do? You live in a condominium, which belongs to a homeowner’s association (HOA), so your first instinct is to contact them.
Woodlandwindows.com
Know the process
Your window replacement options will vary depending on the number of units (condos), the age of the buildings, the number of stories and/or the unique bi-laws of your association. Generally speaking, homeowners, that would be you, are responsible for replacing your unit’s windows within guidelines that pertain to matching the existing windows and maybe newer energy regulations. It is common however for an HOA to organize an association-wide replacement project charging each unit their portion of the total cost.
 
Let’s assume you’re handed a HOA window replacement guide, including requirements, and told that it’s up to you to replace your old leaky windows.
 
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Replacement windows for Condominium, Townhouse or a Development in Chicago

If your windows are in need of replacement and your house, condo, townhouse or apartment is part of a homeowners’ association (HOA) there are a few things you’ll want to consider.
David Weekly Townhouse
An HOA will typically have a set of documents governing repairs, upgrades or modifications made to your residence. These are the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions known as the CC&Rs. Be sure to read these documents for specifications related to replacing your windows. Using these guidelines, will save you headaches in the long run.
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2569 Hits

Drafty Windows Letting the Winter in?

Tired of a drafty house?
Tired of taping gaps around your windows?
Tired of winter already when it’s only January?

Today.com
 
Can’t see out your windows?
Condensation dripping down your windows?
Tired of winter already when it’s only January?
The weather outside shouldn’t appear on the inside. If you’re constantly chilly the culprit may be your old windows. If your windows are letting the winter in - it may be time to replace your old windows. Inefficient windows leak cold air and moisture.
 
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Velux Skylights Reimagine Winter

HGTV 2015 Smart Home
The success of HGTV is that it stretches our imaginations. This year homes have featured skylights that brighten the interior space. For years now HGTV sponsors a contest and selects one home that best represents the design and building trends for the year. This year’s 2015 Smart Home features a modern farmhouse in the very hip Austin, Texas. It’s “modern” in that it’s a fresh take on the classic traditional farmhouse style. The architect’s use of skylights to reimagine the space caught my attention as we slip into the annual winter darkness.
 
In the last decade, builders installed recessed lighting in ceilings in an attempt to brighten the dark corners of a home. Now with technological advances like solar power, built in shades, and always clean “Neat®” coated glass, VELUX® skylights are replacing artificial lighting with natural lighting.
 
As the winter turns the skies darker, windows barely capture light depending on the time of day, whereas skylights provide balanced daylight that fills even remote corners of a room.
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Window detail creates that model home feel.

Earlier this year our blog titled “Want that model home feel? Aim high”, suggested that the very act of creating taller windows and doors in your home increases the wow factor found in model homes. The desire to create that model home feel in your own home is a sentiment many homeowners express. Another design secret is the importance of detail.
Once a home’s style is determined, what makes that style come alive is attention to detail. It’s important that you take the time to select the windows, doors and other objects in your home beginning with three design principles.
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Installation and The Big Mistake

Marvin Ultimate Casements
It’s hard to say why it happens, but time and again, homeowners make the big mistake when replacing their windows. After spending untold hours researching window brands they buy their windows without any knowledge about installation and they make the big mistake.
 
The big mistake is signing a sales order for your new windows and afterwards, beginning the installation discussion.
 
At Woodland Windows and Doors, we think window and door installations done improperly may not be immediately obvious, but can lead to serious long-term problems. There are some things that as a business, you just have to invest in, in order to ensure the job is done right. We at Woodland think that installation is one of those things.
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1057 Hits

Stuck Windows This Winter – What you need to know about hard to open windows.

If you find yourself crouched low to gravity, feet hip width apart, abs firm, elbows tucked, arms ready to lift and you’re not a sumo wrestler, you may have a problem of stuck windows.
Windows
Don’t get stuck inside this winter. If you’re wrestling with old or new windows you can do something about it before winter arrives. First, understand that humidity causes wood windows to swell, accumulated dust causes tracks to increase friction, and loose or faulty tension springs fail. It’s also possible that the installation wasn’t done correctly. If the window wasn’t installed perfectly square, if too much insulating foam was compressed in the wall cavity, or if setscrews weren’t properly adjusted - your window can be hard to open.
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2198 Hits

Remodeling Old Homes with Sustainable Materials

The building industry has transformed over the past decade because of new technologies and designs that make our homes more comfortable and more economical. Traditional homes valued for their quality craftsmanship or architectural significance can now undergo renovations to bring them up to modern building standards without compromising the beauty of the original home.
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Replacing Windows - Keep Your Criteria to Three

To broaden your chance of selecting the right replacement window, narrow your criteria.

 

 
Choosing the right replacement window can be an overwhelming task because of the seemingly limitless options available today. If you focus on only three criteria, you’ll triple your chance of choosing successfully.
 
The three essential criteria to weigh are, your window budget, the window U-factor and the window warranty – everything else is ancillary.
 
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No Regrets Remodeling – Start with the Basics

When we think about remodeling our homes, we imagine a kitchen, bathroom, more space or maybe an outdoor patio. Few people dream about remodeling their home’s infrastructure, windows, doors, siding, heating and cooling systems, that sort of thing. The secret to no regrets remodeling is to start with basic home improvement and finish with the nice to have luxuries.
 
Home Maintenance
 
Marvin Integrity
It’s a well know fact among realtors and contractors that homebuyers prefer homes that have been well maintained. If the windows are leaking or the patio slider won’t slide, buyers don’t care how beautiful the kitchen is. Buyers want the basic systems to work, well aware that maintenance can be costly, and people are afraid of that. On the other hand, if a buyer knows they don’t have to spend money replacing the basics, they’re more likely to buy the house and dream of their new kitchen.
 
 

 

 
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Soundproof Windows Can Quiet That Noise

Our cities, towns and neighborhoods are increasingly noisy places to live due to the faster pace of life, proximity to highways, airports or trains, and increased density of housing. So it’s little wonder more homeowners and builders are interested in windows and window upgrades that will dampen outdoor sounds.
City Condo - Pinterest
The question is, can new windows reduce unwanted outdoor sounds from being heard inside your home?
Sound travels through mechanical waves. When a plane flies over your house the sound reverberates through surrounding particles; including; gases, liquids and solids, which vibrate or collide and pass the sound energy along to our ears. The denser the medium, the slower it will travel and so, the more the sound will be absorbed before it reaches your ears. If you want to select windows that will produce a quieter home, you need to pay attention to the acoustics – the sound control of a window.
Now the question is, can windows be made to be acoustically soundproof? Answer, no, however there are techniques for making windows that dampen sound?
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When Replacing Windows Enhance - Don’t Just Replace

We should have changed our windows rather than simply replace them when we had the chance. We’ve all heard this lament at sometime from a homeowner who completed a major remodeling project. Today, more than ever, homeowners contemplating a window replacement or general remodel project need to listen to this cautionary tale. When it’s time to replace your windows, seize the opportunity to enhance the look of your home, do not just replace your windows.
Marvin Ultimate Casement
Be Strategic
It’s likely that 75% of the windows in your home as they were originally installed are still functionally adequate for your lifestyle. However, it’s likely that there are rooms, which could be visibly enhanced with a different style window. Consider casements to replace double hung windows, so you don’t have to climb on your kitchen counters to open a few windows over the sink? Maybe, the stationary transom window above the entry door could be replaced with an awning inviting fresh air to flow through your home? Or maybe it’s time to update your home’s curb appeal with a more contemporary look by selecting new windows that have minimal detailing and integrated window coverings? Simple changes can yield dramatic results.
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Replacing Windows. To Everything There Is A Season

How do I know if my windows need to be replaced? It’s a question we get nearly every day and I must admit that when I hear that question a song plays in my head. The song goes something like this; to everything there is a season…a time for this and a time for that. That sentiment is indeed the best way to answer the question. Everything eventually wears out and is replaced with something else. In the case of windows that ‘something else’ is far and away better than what it is replacing.


Source: Marvin

Older homes often have extremely durable original wood windows that with regular maintenance and repair can last 100 years. On the other hand, homes built within the past 50-60 years usually require wood windows to be replaced around 20 years after installation. These wood windows are more prone to rotting primarily due to the fact the wood is not old growth and so not the hardwoods of yesteryear. Additionally, techniques such as finger joints and the environmental restrictions placed on paint ingredients, reduces the paint’s preservative and anti-microbial properties.

While it’s possible to repair surface damage caused by mold, wood rot or cracks, these may be an indication of deeper damage or a precursor to future infrastructure damage because the window system is slowly failing. The most important thing to determine is whether the surrounding structure of the home has sustained any damage. Inefficient windows can leak, allowing water to enter your house both in front of and behind the walls, inviting mold and mildew to grow.

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Replacing Your Windows? Review the Advantages of Vinyl.

Replacement window frames come in a number of different materials and for some homeowners’ vinyl maybe the best choice. While clad-wood and fiberglass each offer a menu of finishes or custom styling, vinyl comes at a price that is hard to beat. Homeowners who need to replace old worn out windows, on a fixed budget should consider vinyl-frame windows as a suitable choice. If Woodland Windows and Doors didn’t think so, we wouldn’t include them among our selection.
Vinyl-frame windows first appeared in the 1970s when small manufacturers began to offer an alternative to wood windows. Vinyl (PVC) Poly Vinyl Chloride is a durable material that has gained popularity as a building material for a variety of purposes in recent years.
There are clear advantages to vinyl windows such as, less expensive than wood, don’t absorb moisture, don’t rot, don’t need to be repainted and offer improved thermal efficiency. However, just as a vinyl deck looks and feels like plastic and not wood, the biggest drawback for many homeowners upon seeing vinyl windows is that they do not have the character of wood.
So for durability and strength, low maintenance and energy efficiency, we give vinyl windows high marks. If you have an older home, many homeowners find it difficult to find a color that matches their style. Vinyl windows are not as strong as clad-wood windows, can appear thicker than other window types and can’t be repainted.
The relatively short 45-year history, compared to the history of wood windows provides us with only limited data about the long-term performance. How will these modern vinyl windows look and perform over time?
To bridge this uncertainty gap, it’s critical that the vinyl window you choose is certified by the American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) and is made by a reputable well established manufacturer with a track record. This is what Woodland Windows and Doors did when we added a vinyl replacement window to our product line in order to meet the needs of every customer.
The Woodland Vinyl Replacement window meets the AAMA certification test and comes in a variety of profiles fit for classic homes. Our windows offer fusion-welded master frame and sashes, five exterior colors, energy efficiency features, tilt sashes, and come in double-hung, casement, sliders, awnings, and bow and bay styles.
We’ve put our name on the very best choice in vinyl windows in order to bring the best value to our customers.
Vinyl windows don’t have the 160 or more year track record of wood windows, but our selection, which Woodland will install with care, may make modern vinyl windows the right choice for you.
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1085 Hits

Replacing Your Windows? Review the Advantages of Fiberglass.

In last weeks post our aim was to sort out the confusing world of replacement windows.  Customers come into our showroom often confused because of all the erroneous information out there.  Our blog post focused on the advantages of clad-wood replacement windows, which most people consider the premium choice. Like the word premium means, homeowners who select clad-wood elect to pay a little extra for features they deem essential or aesthetically valuable. Fiberglass or composite replacement windows can offer a worthy budget alternative to clad-wood.
 
What is essential or aesthetically enhancing for one home, may not apply to another because homes and lifestyles differ. The two primary differences between clad-wood and fiberglass or composite replacement windows, are price and options. Wood-clad is more expensive than fiberglass or composite and may offer options that more closely suit your existing home. Still, what comes as a surprise to most people is that fiberglass or composite windows offer several options as well, like a wood interior for example or multiple paint finishes. Fiberglass or composite is the newest replacement window material to come on the scene at a price between clad-wood and vinyl.
 
All replacement windows categorized as either fiberglass or composite are not created equal however. One of the challenges when comparing these windows is that composites are not all-alike making it difficult to compare apples to apples. The make-up of the frame will differ considerably between manufacturers and models further confusing things. You’ll find any number of descriptions such as, a mix of wood sawdust or fibers and extruded PVC or thermoplastic polymer. You may encounter descriptions like, chemically bonded blends of wood and plastic resins or a blend of wood chips and recycled plastic.
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Replacing Your Windows? Review the Advantages of Wood.

The surest way to use up two idle hours in a day is to Google ‘replacement windows’. After researching replacement windows for hours at home, homeowners come into our showroom more confused than ever. The last thing Woodland Windows and Doors wants to do is to add to the confusion, so we've pledged to make the subject understandable and help you make an informed decision about the option you choose.
Making the subject of replacement windows understandable begins easily enough, but informing customers about specifics that will make a difference for their application is our goal.

After talking about your home, the subject of replacement windows naturally progresses to the following categories.

Do you need a partial or full window replacement?

What material do you prefer, wood, fiberglass, composite, vinyl or aluminum?

This is the end of simple categories that make things understandable because your answer to the two questions creates a rubric cube of possibilities. Most salespeople will focus on explaining the differences between window materials, but we’re not like most because we know everything there is to know about the products available in the market. Woodland thinks it’s more helpful to focus on our customers’ home and explore the range of products that meet and exceed their expectations. Each product has unique attributes and options that go beyond the type of material, so our goal is to introduce our customers to the right products from the start.

Wood replacement windows are the preferred choice if you want to preserve the original character of your home. Woodland recommends clad-wood, not all-wood replacement windows. Even when a customer wants to perfectly match a historical window, we can recommend a product such as Marvin Signature Series, which can replicate an original custom milled window. In most cases however, clad-wood, which has an exterior layer of aluminum or vinyl to protect the frame from weather and minimize maintenance, is the best premium wood replacement window.

Marvin Ultimate comes in double-hung or casement styles and offers a superior clad-wood replacement window.

Wood interior finish options offer six different wood species including cherry and mahogany in six different stain choices. You have other options as well, painted, primed only or clear coat. Customers who select the primed only option can have the windows finished in their own custom color. 

The exterior of the window features an extruded aluminum clad-wood finished in commercial-grade anodized paint that resists fading or chalking. Customers can choose from nineteen colors or order a custom color. The anodized finish is said to be as hard as diamonds and is one of the most durable finishes made. The anodizing process places the aluminum in a chemically stable and non-toxic bath. An electric current is passed through the bath, causing the surface of the aluminum to oxidize and form a stronger coating than the original aluminum surface. The result is a surface that is resistant to abrasion, erosion, and ultraviolet light degradation.

Aluminum cladding can be rolled or extruded – the two are very different and Marvin Ultimate products have extruded aluminum cladding. The standard for roll-form aluminum components requires only a 0.9 mil finish thickness instead 1.2 mil coating required for extruded aluminum. Imagine a typical Midwest storm with hail and debris knocking against your windows and you’ll understand the difference in aluminum cladding. Roll-form can dent far more easily than an extruded finish, which is why Marvin stands behind a 20-year warranty against loss of adhesion, chalking or fading.

The double-hung tilt-wash style allows the sashes to tilt in for easy cleaning like many new windows and, unlike most manufacturers, the Marvin Ultimate casement window can also rotate inward, making both sides of the glass washable.

The sizes and styles are numerous, including multiple glass options most suitable to your home and your personal preferences. For example, Woodland most often recommends Low E1 for our northern climate because it blocks heat loss and reflects heat back into the room. Or depending on whether the window is a south wall, north wall, upstairs or downstairs, we may recommend another glazing option to take advantage of the sun’s radiant heat.

Woodland also carries other recommended clad-wood replacement windows such as Marvin Integrity as a less expensive alternative to the Ultimate or Signature for a highly custom design. We can also show you a comparison of top products like Andersen 400 Series or Woodwright and Pella  Proline (standard sizes only), Designer or Architectural Series.

Replacing your old windows can be as fun as selecting windows for a new home. So stop Googling and come in to our showroom where you can touch and feel the products.

Next week we’ll review the fiberglass replacement windows.
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Stuck Inside all Winter Without Fresh Air? Hard to Open Windows.

 
One might expect old windows to become stuck or hard to open, but it’s quite a different thing when it happens to new windows. Most people would agree that newer windows should glide open and shut. Then again, most people expect to clean and maintain their car from the first day they drive it home - through the life of the car. Like cars, windows are finely engineered, rely on moving parts, withstand extreme weather, and are built to last a long time. Therefore, window owners who appreciate a smooth ride on the road will appreciate how smoothly a well-maintained window will operate, year after year.

Care and maintenance guides are available from all of the major window brands including specific recommendations by model or type of material. Woodland Windows and Doors major brands, Marvin, Andersen and Pella provide detailed instructions on their websites. Generally speaking and in simple terms, most manufacturers recommend the following ongoing maintenance.

  • Weather-strip is in good condition and properly attached to surfaces. Interior and exterior window finish is maintained so that the window material isn’t exposed. Maintaining wood, painted wood, aluminum, vinyl, or steel requires different upkeep according to the individual product guides. 
  • Trim off any old loose exterior caulking around the outer edges of the window frame and seal any gaps with a high quality caulk. 
  • Tighten any exposed hardware screws securely.
  • Check that all hardware (locks, opening mechanisms, hinges etc.), sills and tracks are clean of any sand, dirt or dust and operate smoothly. If required, lubricate hinges and moving parts with a dry silicone spray. Make sure the weep holes are clear of dirt and open. 
  • All glass can be cleaned after wiping loose debris from the surface with a soft, dry cloth.
  • Maintain the beauty and performance of your window hardware with periodic cleaning. White paint finish, stone, antique or bright brass, wash hardware using a mild detergent and a soft cloth. Polished or brushed chrome, wash hardware using a soft cloth and polish using a commercially available chrome polish according to manufacturers’ instruction. Oil rubbed or distressed bronze are ‘living finishes’ with no protective coating. Occasionally, apply light mechanic oil to deepen the color and sheen of the hardware. 

Following this maintenance routine as needed or annually will go a long way to preserve your window performance and avoid costly repairs. However, even the best maintained windows need repair.

Common repairs to double-hung windows.
 
If it is a wood window, the wood may be swelling. With other types of windows, there may be dirt, dust, and debris built up or a mechanism has failed. It’s not uncommon for mechanisms such as tension springs to fail in as little as five years, making windows difficult to operate.
 
These kinds of repairs are straightforward, but that doesn’t mean quick or simple, particularly if you’ve never seen it done before. Woodland recommends cleaning and maintaining your double-hung windows with these easy steps.
 
In the first case where the wood swells when the temperature or humidity changes, the fix is to plane or sand down the window sashes and lubricate the inside of the window frame jambs or channel guides. If a dirty window frame is the problem, clean the window frames and spray with a dry silicone spray lubricant. Lastly, if the window is still difficult to open or close, the problem is likely to be a faulty mechanism.
 
Common repairs to casement windows
 
Typically debris is built up in the window track or the moving parts need to be lubricated or replaced. Another common cause of problems could be stripped or loose screws causing friction between the window sash and frame. You can check for this by removing the sash from your awning or casement windows.
Woodland's customers know they can call if their new windows don't operate smoothly and Woodland will take care of problems after installation, but everyone should know that a little maintenance goes a long way. For more about cleaning and maintaining your casement windows. Check out how to clean a Marvin Casement Window.
Remember, a little fresh air goes a long way to get us through the winter - don't get stuck inside.
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Winter is a Good Time to Replace Your Old Windows

Tired of a cold house?
Tired of trying to heat a cold house?
Tired of winter already when it's only January?

Old leaky windows can account for as much as 10-25% of the heat loss in your home, so why wait until Spring to replace your old windows. Leave the cold outside.


No gaping holes throughout the house.

Woodland's installers work in teams replacing one window at a time. One installer works outside the window and one works inside. When ever possible, we close off each room we're working in to reduce the amount of cold air flowing through the house. Each window takes about 30 minutes and many homes can be completed in one day.

Immediate difference in comfort.

The new windows are manufactured to 1/8" of your window opening. Our installers then add insulation around your window frame and the windows once they are in place to maximize energy efficiency. Homeowners feel the immediate effects of new windows in their homes.

Update old painted windows with new finishes.

Woodland's selection of stylish wood replacement windows from Marvin, Andersen and Pella means you can update the look of your windows. These new windows can be stained and varnished to the natural look of wood adding warmth and charm to your home. You may choose factory painted windows for the sleek and resilient finish of a contemporary look. Or maybe you want to match the current windows in your home - that's possible too.

Schedule a free consultation.

If you've read to this point, you probably need to call us 630.869.1450 and visit our website to learn more about replacing your windows.

For 45 years, Woodland has made our customer's lives a little easier because we worry about all the details for you. See what people say about Woodland installers.

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Replacing Windows? Ask About Condensation Resistance

Most people know about the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) rating system and label that shows consumers how a window performs in several areas, such as, thermal insulation, solar heat gain, visible light transfer and air leakage. What most people don’t know is that the NFRC also rates a window’s condensation resistance (CR). While, the U-Factor, which rates thermal insulation or how well a window prevents heat from escaping, is most important. For a cold climate like Illinois, another important rating, maybe CR. Since this rating is optional for manufacturers to include on their Energy Star label, it may not be available, however it is important to consider when purchasing new or replacement windows.

Condensation on your windows can be worse in winter when the outside temperature is below the dew point of the indoor air. Water or frost appears when warm moist air comes in contact with colder dry air.
Maybe your windows have a single pane of glass, which provides no insulation. Since condensation is more likely to form on cold surfaces than warm surfaces, there are water droplets or ice on the glass. If this describes your windows, be aware that upgrading your windows to today’s technologies will make a significant difference.
Early double-pane wood windows with aluminum spacers can experience condensation. The aluminum spacer separating the two panes of glass is very conductive, thereby transferring in the cold from the outside. Spacers are located around the glass edges and so conduct heat from the inside pane to the outside pane. The area where the wood meets the glass can develop condensation, freeze, thaw, and eventually rot the wood.
Today’s windows are engineered differently. Frankly, the most important part of the window to resist condensation is that spacer that keeps the panes of glass apart and seals in the gas. Today’s spacers are made of less conductive stainless steel, U-shaped tin steel, and foam polymers. Low-E and gas filled glass panes reduce temperature transfer between the inside and outside. Add the frame, to this list of improved materials, and you essentially have the features that are measured in the NFRC U-factor ratings. The NFRC recognizes three parts to a window: the center-of-glass, the edge-of-glass, and the frame. The lower the U-factor, the better the window is at keeping heat in – particularly important during winter’s heating season.
Some condensation is expected and can result from any number of variables, including a homeowner’s lifestyle. Dryers that are not vented to the outside, gas cooking without using the vent, room humidifiers or forgetting a boiling teapot, our lifestyle choices all contribute. However, sloppy, wet, sweaty windows are unsightly and left unchecked, the constant moisture can lead to serious damage of the windows, window coverings and walls.
If you’re in the market for replacement windows remember to ask about the features that contribute to condensation resistance. For example, our colder climate makes aluminum frames a poor choice, but if you must have this for your modern home make sure the window you choose has thermal breaks. Second, opt for Low-E and argon or krypton gas fills between double or triple panes. Third, ask about warm-edge spacers, which are no-metal or spacers made of less conductive metals.
With so many window choices out there, it would be nice to have a simple rating system, like the U-factor to compare windows for condensation resistance. The NFRC  and others, have attempted to articulate a common measurement for manufacturer’s to use, which is called the CR scale of 1-100, with a higher number representing more resistance to the formation of condensation. A single pane wood window might have a rating of 15, while a triple-pane wood window may achieve a rating of 75. A cold climate, like Illinois, ideally would opt for a rating over 50.
So why aren’t window manufacturer’s required to include the CR rating on their windows? In a nutshell, while it’s a valuable metric to obtain, there are still multiple ways to measure condensation resistance and limitations to either rating method.  It may come back to the homeowner’s lifestyle choices contributing to indoor condensation. For example, shades, curtains, and blinds tend to reduce the amount of airflow across the window. This allows the window to cool and increase the likelihood of condensation.
Woodland Windows and Doors have done the research about condensation resistance and have discovered that a single rating probably isn’t a particularly useful number. However, selecting new or replacement windows that reduce the relative risk that you will have condensation is a very worthwhile pursuit. If you need to maintain a higher interior humidity during the winter months, for health or comfort reasons, you want to pay attention to the edge-of-glass details. Or maybe you just want to be sure you understand the important features and specifications of the windows you buy. Ask Woodland -Woodland knows. 
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Installation and Why Our Installers are Woodland Windows and Doors Employees

Have you ever heard the term slippery slope? It means an idea or course of action, which will inevitably lead to something unacceptable, wrong or disastrous. At Woodland Windows and Doors, we think window and door installations done improperly are like a slippery slope – once they start heading downhill they keep going downhill. There are some things that as a business, you just have invest in, in order to ensure the job is done right. We at Woodland think that installation is one of those things.
How hard can it be to install windows and doors? Tricky for a professional who's learned the ins and outs - largely because of all the things that can go wrong. Woodland recognized years ago that the surest way to fail was to leave the fate of our customer’s job in the hands of others. We’ve experienced the slippery slope first hand such as, when a few windows arrive defective, but it goes unnoticed until they’re put into the window opening or a second story window requires special equipment to reach it, which wasn’t planned for. We know how quickly a job can go downhill and we know that the surest way to deliver an expert job is to control every aspect of it with trained people who are committed to a perfect outcome.
The stories about botched installations, and even worse service after the problem, are legion among families, friends, neighbors and strangers who post their stories on the Internet. 
The Installers didn’t show up when they were scheduled. I called the store where I bought the windows and the job manager apologized for the delay, but said he couldn’t locate the sub-contracted installers and gave me their cell phone number to keep trying to reach them myself. They arrived six hours later and weren’t able to finish the job in the one day that had been quoted. I had to rearrange my plans to accommodate them to come back the next day. Yep, you guessed it; they arrived an hour and a half later than the scheduled time.
The installers didn’t clean up as promised. They clearly didn't work for the company that we'd bought the windows from and it took two days, and my withholding the signed job completion form, before they returned to remove the old windows and trash – something that had been guaranteed by the salesperson. They didn’t cover the entire work area and it took me two days to clean up after them.
The installers didn't carry extra tools and parts in their truck. Before applying the finishing touches to the last two of our replacement windows, the installer ran out of caulk and touch up paint to cover the nail holes in the frames. When I followed the guy back to his truck to check on his supplies, it was clear that installing windows was a side job and he wasn’t prepared for any contingencies.

The installers rushed through the job. It was as though they’d underpriced their bid that at one point, I joked, that they must have another job to go to after ours. Frankly, judging from the off brand, discount warehouse, house-wrap, tape and tubes of caulk they were responsible for supplying the materials as well.
The installers left without finishing the job to our satisfaction. Before the installers left I noticed on two windows the keepers (locks) were broken. It was a typical Chicago winter and cold air was leaking in and keep in mind, we couldn’t secure the sashes. They suggested that we call the store tomorrow for replacements and left. It was a week before the new parts arrived.
And so it goes, with some horrific customer service nightmares containing every possible combination of things that can go wrong. Did you hear about the house at the bottom of the hill, whose owners had to hire a qualified contractor to remove and re-install every window?
Marvin Infinity Casements Installation
 
Installation, whether you are replacing your old windows or having new windows added to your home, requires careful planning, flawless execution, and superior response times to address those unforeseen problems. It’s a process that must be owned from the beginning to the end. Did the person who measured your job, check their measurements before the order was placed? Or did that person walk through the job with the installers? The best way, the only way, to achieve a flawless level of performance is to build a professional team of skilled people who don’t just show up, but who own the work down to the last keeper – if it doesn’t lock the job’s not done.

We don’t use sub-contractors for window and door installation and we hope you won’t either.

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Chicago Homeowners’ Views on Vinyl vs. Wood vs. Aluminum Replacement Windows

Homeowners who choose vinyl to be their favorite material for replacement windows reason from the fact that vinyl is a high quality material and very flexible when it comes to usage.
 
With vinyl windows, regular painting is not necessary. Moreover, you only need to periodically wash the windows to keep them in good condition.
 
Vinyl is made from Polyvinyl Chloride, which is a very efficient heat insulator. Therefore, vinyl windows will keep heat in during the winter and keep it out during the summer. This will always save you the burden of high energy bills as devices like heating and cooling systems will utilize less energy. Vinyl is cheap, yet very long lasting. Vinyl windows also come in different colors, designs, and shapes to choose from – you are not limited to just a select few colors or sizes.
 
However, there are some downsides to this window material. For example, vinyl windows can potentially fade in extreme weather conditions, especially in too much heat. When this happens, the window must be wholly replaced because vinyl cannot be repainted.
 
For some homeowners, wooden replacement windows are the best choice. Why? Unlike vinyl, wood can easily be shaped into various styles.  Wood is also very strong and durable and can withstand adverse weather conditions. Some woods, for example Mahogany, can last for decades without rotting. Wooden windows are also good insulators, thus, they can regulate temperatures during the summer and winter to save on energy bills.
 
Wooden windows have also got their own downsides, however, as well. Number one, they have to be painted regularly. This means an increased cost of maintenance. Number two, they are susceptible to molding which can interfere with the fiber of the wood. Lastly, wood can be affected by termites.
 
There are also those who are of the opinion that aluminum replacement windows are the best. It is resistant to rust, making it unnecessary to do regular painting. Aluminum windows are also very easy to clean. This way, the homeowner can use his time to engage in other activities instead of spending it all with cleaning the windows. Aluminum is typically less expensive than wooden windows.
 
The only tangible disadvantage of aluminum window is that it has low energy efficiency. It easily allows heat to pass through it. This increases energy bills as there will be a need to use HVAC systems more often.
 
In conclusion, every homeowner must look at the disadvantages and the advantages of these three materials before choosing on the one that will best suit him or her.
 
 
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Learn Which is the Better Option for You: Full Replacement Window vs. Partial Replacement Windows

Is a full replacement window better than a partial window replacement? This post is intended to shed some light on this great question. If you are planning to add some new windows to your home, and are still undecided about which option to choose, read on and learn more.
 
Full Window Replacement
 
A full window replacement also known as a full window installation, which involves removing the whole existing window, including the frame and replacing it with new components. In other words, full replacements involve doing away with the entire window, frame, molding, and so forth.
 
Benefits of Full Replacement Windows
 
It appears that full replacement window has more advantages than partial replacement windows in many ways. Many homeowners are often advised to opt for full frame replacement windows when:

The old frame is deteriorated or damaged beyond repair.They want to capitalize on energy efficiency by installing efficient replacement windows. 

There are a number of reasons to go for full-frame replacement windows. To begin with, this technique replaces the outdated window frame with something that can add curb appeal to your home. With full-frame replacement windows, all the mold and rotting problems will be taken care of. This can help to maintain the structural integrity of your home. Also, new window-frames are well insulated between the rough opening and the frames. For this reason, full replacement windows will save more energy; thus, reducing the burden of costly heating and cooling bills.
 
Cons  

More time and labor intensive to installDepending on the window’s size, there might be a need to replace window treatments inside the home

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Single vs. Double vs. Triple Pane Replacement Windows – What You Should Know

A pane is a framed part of a window normally fitted with a thin glass or any other transparent material.
 
Single pane windows are very popular among those homeowners who treasure simplicity and the basics. Single window panes are very affordable, and will therefore not cause so much financial strain to those people who are operating on tight budgets.
 
They are also very easy to repair. A sudden crack will not be too big of a deal since the replacement procedure is quite simple and very easy to understand. All you need to do is to remove the remaining pieces of glass on the broken window, replace them with a clean sheet of glass and seal it with high quality putty. Remember - this should be left to the professionals!
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Argon Gas and Its Impact on Replacement Windows

Argon is one of the group eight elements in the periodic table. It has an atomic number of 18. Argon gas makes windows more energy efficient. Argon has a higher density when compared to that of oxygen. This means that the Argon gas between the layers of double or triple paned windows is less affected by convectional currents and drafts .The windows will therefore have a higher insulation value. This saves on the cost of energy since the homeowner will not have to spend so much on heating and air conditioning during summer and winter.  
 
Argon gas also reflects excess heat better when compared to plain air. Un-welcomed heat is inhibited from entering your home, leaving you only with the desired warmth. This is a much needed property, especially during hot weather.
 
On the other hand, Argon gas may have adverse effect on your window panes. Argon gas will dissipate out of your window after some time; this results in its reduced efficiency. This problem can be easily taken care of by using nonmetallic spaces that seal better and will not allow your gas to escape. Argon gas replacement windows are not available at higher altitudes (i.e. at 2500 and above). 
 
Improper sealing can also cause leakage of your Argon gas. Manufacturers normally use two methods to seal gas into your replacement window panes, namely, the one-holed method and two-holed method. The former is thought to be the best as it minimizes the possibilities of the gas escaping.

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