We’ve Added Weather Shield to Our Robust Product Lineup!

We’re proud to announce our new partnership with Weather Shield, a family-owned manufacturer of high-quality doors and windows. In business since 1955, they offer a solid mix of styles, shapes, sizes, and price points. Weather Shield fits perfectly into the broad selection of Door Store and Windows products, rounding out our offerings to better serve our building and remodeling customers who are always on the lookout for unique lines at a competitive cost. Our partnership is exclusive, making Weather Shield products only available locally at Door Store and Windows. That means our customers have another quality option available when bidding competitive jobs or working within finite budgets.

Room with Weather Shield Windows.

 Weather Shield’s product lines include several collections for a range of needs and design visions. The all-aluminum VUE collection delivers clean lines and mulling for ultra-modern tastes. For those looking to enhance the expansive views of custom high-end homes, the Contemporary collection checks that box. Weather Shield also offers traditional wood-clad windows at two price levels with its Premium and Signature series, both of which feature  a variety of colors, hardware, and finishes.

Laurie Scarborough, co-owner of Door Store and Windows, said, “We chose to partner with Weather Shield not only to broaden our selection of quality doors and windows, but because of how they do business. They’ve been family-owned and operated since the start, so they’ve had the freedom to take a long-term perspective that emphasizes quality over volume. Their products are well-constructed, beautifully designed, and backed by a competitive warranty. Not to mention they offer an excellent value for our price-conscious customers. It’s a win-win all around.”

To learn more about Weather Shield’s wide-range of products, visit weathershield.com or contact us with any questions.

 



View the video below to check out some examples of Weather Shield’s product design flexibility.

 

The ABCs of Doors & Windows: The Parts That Windows and Doors Have in Common

This is part three of our blog series, The ABCs of Doors & Windows. Follow the links to read parts One and Two.

Brick Mold Casing (BMC) – This is the exterior molding on a window or door frame that sits against the structure’s exterior material, serving as a decorative boundary for siding, brick or other material.

Casing – The casing is the interior trim that surrounds the window or door which covers the gap between the window/door and the drywall, hiding the frame, insulation and caulking.

Cladding – The vinyl, fiberglass or aluminum jacket that covers the wooden core on the exterior side of a window or door is called the cladding. It helps preserve the wood and improve its weather resistance.

Divided Lites – Divided lites create the look of multiple, individual panes of glass in a window or door. They can use many different panes of glass or they can be simulated to mimic the look of multiple panes to take advantage of the improved energy efficiency of a single pane. Divided lites are popular in a wide range of architectural styles, from historic replications to modern farmhouses. 

Insulating Glass (IG) – This glass assembly consists of two or more sealed glass panes separated by a space between to reduce heat transfer. Insulating glass, which can contain argon for improved thermal insulation, is one of the most impactful window and door features in terms of energy efficiency. 

Obscure Glass – Often used on entry doors and bathroom windows, obscured glass features a pattern in the pane that provides privacy while maintaining full light transmission.

Screens – Screens are made of close-mesh woven material of metal or fiberglass attached to an aluminum or wood surround, inhibiting the entry of insects while still permitting light, air, and field of view when windows and doors are open.

Tempered Glass – This safety glass is required for large windows and windows that are low to the ground. The glass is heated and then cooled rapidly in a controlled environment for added strength. The tempering process also makes the glass safer due to the pebble-like fragments created when shattered.

Transom – These windows are located above the main window or door and can be either stationary or operating. They allow more light to enter while also adding a decorative touch. 

Weather Strip – Made of felt, foam tape or formed plastic, this strip of resilient material around the door or window reduces air and water infiltration by sealing the sash and frame.

We hope this series on door and window parts has helped you better understand the long list of terms you’ll hear when looking to update or upgrade your home.  Of course, we could not cover everything, so if you have any questions about windows, doors or what will work best for you project, CONTACT US today.

The ABCs of Doors & Windows: Getting to Know Your Door and All Its Parts

This is part two of our blog series, The ABCs of Doors & Windows. Part one can be found HERE.

Just like with windows, doors have a long list of parts and pieces the average homeowner may not be familiar with. Below you’ll find a brief introduction to some of the most common door parts and pieces that will help you better understand your options and hopefully lead to a more informed decision about which door is right for your project!

Frame – Made up of side jambs, head jambs, and mulls, the frame provides the structure to the door opening. It’s the surrounding part of the entry that the door panel fits into.

Hinges – These are the pieces of hardware that allow the door to swing open and closed. Standard-sized doors typically have three hinges while larger, heavier doors may have four or more to help bear the load.

Lockset – The lockset is the complete door lock system including the lock mechanism, knobs, keys, plates, strikes and other components that allow the door to latch and lock in place.

Panel – Sometimes called a slab, the panel is the whole part of the door that swings back and forth. Many doors are divided into several smaller panels of wood or glass.

Rails – The rails are the horizontal segments along the top, bottom and sometimes middle of the door, depending on the panel configuration.

Stiles – The narrow, vertical segments on either side of a door panel are called the stiles. The lock stile is on the side with the door handle or knob, while the hinge stile is on the side with the hinges.

Sidelites (or Sidelights) – These tall, narrow windows are found on one or both sides of the door, allowing more light into the entry way and improving the view.

Sill – The bottom, floor-fastened component of an exterior door frame is called the sill, which helps to seal the entry from leaks and other intrusions.

Strike Plate – This thick metal plate is attached to the door jamb and has a hole to accommodate the door bolt (or multiple holes for multiple bolts), which extends into the plate to lock the door.

 

Sweep – Creating a weather-resistant barrier between the bottom of door panel and the sill, the sweep is made of rubber, foam, neoprene or vinyl.

 

Threshold – The threshold is the strip of metal, wood or fiberglass that covers the sill on an exterior entryway, providing an added seal against things like weather, drafts, and pests.

Of course, if you have any questions about doors or what will work best for you project, CONTACT US  today. In our upcoming final installment of the The ABCs of Doors & Windows, we’ll cover those parts common to both doors and windows! To view more videos about windows and their various parts, click HERE.

The ABCs of Doors & Windows: Getting to Know Your Windows and All Their Parts

This is part one of our blog series, The ABCs of Doors & Windows.

When choosing new windows, you’re likely to find there are a lot of terms that may be unfamiliar to you. The following are some of the most common window terms and definitions to help you gain a clearer view when shopping for replacement windows!

Casement Window – Assembled as a complete operating unit, casement windows feature a combination of window frame, sash, weather-strip, and concealed hinges. Operating casements are hinged on one side, or at the top or bottom. They typically have a crank handle for smooth opening and closing.

Double Hung Window – These windows have two movable sashes, which allow them to slide open vertically. Coil spring blocks and tackle balancing devices keep them up when in the open position.

Single Hung Window – This window looks like a double hung window, but the upper sash is fixed. Only the bottom sash moves up and down.

Frame – This is the stationary part of the window that encloses the glass or sash, made up of the following parts:

  • Head Jamb – The horizontal component along the top of the frame.
  • Sill – The horizontal component along the bottom of the fame.
  • Side Jamb – The vertical components along the sides of the frame.
  • Jamb Liner – The covering over the space between the window frame and the finished interior wall.
  • Jamb Extension – An addition to a standard jamb to adapt the window unit to a deeper wall thickness.

Sash – The operating and/or stationary portion of the window that’s separate from the frame unit is called the sash. It includes the following parts:

  • Stiles – The vertical component along the sides of the sash.
  • Rails – The horizontal components along the top and bottom of the sash.
  • Check Rails – The horizontal components that meet in the middle of a double hung and single hung window.
  • Muntin Bars – The divisional components that extend from rail to rail or stile to stile to create the look of smaller individual panes, usually used when historical accuracy is important.

Sash Lock This locking device holds a window shut, with larger units utilizing two locks.

As always, if you have any questions about windows, doors or what will work best for you project, CONTACT US today. In our next blog we will tackle the different parts of a door so stay tuned! To view more videos about windows and their various parts, click HERE.

Six Solutions for Drafty Windows This Winter

It’s officially winter and you can feel the chill outside. However, if you are feeling that chill inside, it is time to check your windows and get them ready for winter as well. This process, known as winterizing, will prevent both the frigid drafts from plummeting temperatures and the peaks of rising utility bills.

How to Winterize Your Windows:

1) Prepare the Window

Before you begin the winterizing process, make sure that your windows are clean. This can be done whenever the weather is temperate enough for the windows to be properly washed. Starting with a clean slate, examine the exterior windows for any gaps, check the caulk seal and note any other repairs that need to be made.

2) Close and Lock Your Windows

Next, be sure to close and lock all your windows. This action sets the window sashes into the correct position in the window frame, eliminating any unnecessary openings.  It maximizes the windows energy efficient features.

3) Caulk

Re-caulking windows is one of the most cost-effective ways of eliminating any leaks and drafts. First, check the exterior part of the window and then move on to the interior window, checking for any gaps and caulk that is old or missing. Be sure to remove the old caulk before you add the new caulk — it is easily removed with a putty knife or other tool.

4) Weatherstripping

After checking the caulk seal, check the weatherstripping around the windows. According to Craig Rowe at The Door Store and Windows, who has 25 years of experience in the door installation and service business, “the most important thing to address on any window is the weatherstripping. Making sure the contacts are clean so they seal well” is top priority. Weatherstripping is usually located on the sashes, which are the parts of your window that move.  Look for any tears, disintegration or missing pieces of weatherstripping that need to be replaced. Weatherstripping can be foam, hard inserts or rubber tubing, all effective in creating a barrier to the cold.

5) Reglazing

Problematic primarily in older homes with wooden window frames, window panes often need to be reglazed as they age. During your initial prep of your windows, check that the panes are intact, not loose and that your glaze covers the expanse of the pane. Reglaze any panes that need it to ensure uniform coverage.

6) Determine need for new windows

Sometimes the weatherstripping and caulking are not enough, and it’s time for new windows.  According to the experts at Marvin windows, “Old or inefficient windows could have the same effect on your heating bill as leaving a window open all winter long.” If this is the case, we are happy to come out and consult with you about your options.

Winterizing your windows is one of the biggest returns on investment that you can do to your home to maximize interior warmth and minimize high utility bills. It is a worthwhile investment of your time and money that will ensure you stay warm all winter long.

Interested in Dark Windows for Your House? Here’s What to Consider.

Watch practically any home renovation show and you’ll see there’s been a resurgence in the dramatic look of dark windows. If you’re thinking of adding black or darker hued windows to your home, here are a few things to think about…

Are Dark Windows a Trend?

The fact is dark windows have been around for centuries. However, there’s no doubt the look has recently gained in popularity. We asked Ann Gregory at the Door Store and Windows for her thoughts. She said, “I personally believe all colors are a trend. Just consider your own home’s interior and exterior. It’s very common to change colors often. When it comes to darker windows though, bronze and black are very classic colors that will never go out of style.”

Dramatic Effect

Anytime you contrast a dark color with a lighter one, it makes an impact. If you’re looking for a less dramatic design choice, Gregory says “you can soften the contrast by only having dark sashes and making the frames a lighter color, balancing the darker and lighter looks.”

Inside the home, contrasts can be created with lighter walls that highlight the interior windows. Often there is no need for window treatments with such a dramatic difference in color. On the outside, darker windows against a lighter exterior draw attention to the house, positively impacting the curb appeal. In short, homeowners need to consider all the design choices of a home to ensure dark windows are a cohesive positive addition rather than an intrusive element.

Will They Fade?

Unlike white windows that do not fade as they age, exterior dark windows will inevitably show their age. It is important to invest in windows with higher quality components and a longer life span. Windows made from extruded aluminum cladding (versus thinner roll-form aluminum) retain their dark finishes longer. They may have a larger upfront cost but benefit from better protection against fading.

Two other things to think about when considering fading are the elevation and directions your window face. Exterior windows facing west or south fade more quickly than those facing east and north due to the sun’s direct UV rays. Also, windows in full sunlight will fade faster than those in shade. When it comes to elevation, higher windows often get more sunlight, unless they have a shade element nearby. More direct light means more susceptibility to fading.

Warranties

In general, dark windows do not cost more than white windows. Virtually all types of windows can be purchased in dark colors. Still, you want to make sure your investment will last. That’s where warranties come into play. The better the construction of a window, the longer the warranty. Windows made from extruded aluminum can have warranties of up to 30 years. It’s also important to note that some manufacturers only cover manufacturing defects, which doesn’t include fading, so carefully vetting the warranty is critical. As they say, you often get what you pay for and peace of mind in knowing your investment is protected can be well worth the added cost.

No matter what color you choose, any upgrade to your windows is a valuable asset to your home. That’s why working with a window specialist—rather than someone who does roofing or siding for example—is always a good idea. If you’d like to learn more about investing in your home’s curb appeal, the experts at Door Store and Windows can help you find the design solution that’s right for you.

Which Window Glass Is Best for Your Home? Hint: There’s Not Just One Type to Choose from.

When it comes to windows, most people focus on the window architecture and the basic aesthetic of the frame. But one of the most important elements for the function and efficiency of the window is the glass itself. There are a lot of options for glass whether it be the insulation, the strength and the surface coatings, all of which will maximize your investment.

Here are the different types of glass for windows:

  1. Standard Float
  2. Tempered
  3. Laminated
  4. Decorative
  5. Coated or Low-E
  6. Insulated

Considering you might need several types of window glass in your home, let’s consider the types and how they function.

1. Standard Float Glass

This is window glass in its basic form, made from glass that has been melted down and formed into a glass panel. It is fragile, weak and without any sort of coatings. It is this glass that is used to create the different types of glass for windows. It is the building block for all the different types window glass.

Tempered glass is considered “safety glassI’ and is manufactured to be up to four times stronger than standard glass.

2. Tempered Glass

Once float glass is made (see above), it can undergo another process to make it stronger called “tempering”. This results in a much stronger version of window glass. It can be broken but not be cut. When it is broken, the pieces are smaller and not as dangerous as when weak glass breaks. Also known as safety glass, it is optimal in any area where someone might accidentally fall into it or near it.  Tempered glass is commonly used in doors and big windows near a busy area.

Tip: Tempered glass is most commonly used in the large panes of glass – picture windows and door lites, for instance. Be careful! It is easily scratched by razor blades removing adhesive.

When a laminated glass pane is broken, the plastic holds all of the pieces together.

3. Laminated Glass

Even stronger than tempered glass is laminated glass, which is considered the ultimate safety glass. Laminated glass is created by placing a thin sheet of plastic between two panes of glass.  If broken, it will not shatter and disperse everywhere; it stays within the confines of the plastic. Also, this glass is ideal as a sound buffer with its layers of protection. Examples of laminated glass are car windshields, hurricane windows and windows in office buildings or high-rises.

4. Decorative Glass

Decorative glass encompasses any glass that is not perfectly clear and see-thru. Also known as obscured or textured glass, this glass allows natural light to come through the pane while also creating privacy. This glass can be etched, tinted, frosted or textured to create a decorative element. Decorative glass can be used anywhere in the home, but is most prevalent in bathrooms or doors, even in glass panels around the house.

5. Low Emissivity Glass

Low emissivity glass (or low-E) is created with a thin coating on the glass designed to block UV rays from the sun. This glass blocks infrared heat from the sun while still allowing light to pass through. They also reflect the interior temperature back into the house, resulting in a more temperate house, with heat being kept inside the home in the winter and cooler in the summer. By blocking the UV rays, everything from your skin to your furnishings will be protected from the sun’s harmful rays.

This coating is so thin that it is barely visible to the naked eye, and a window’s visibility is not impacted by it. This glass is an ideal candidate for large areas facing the sun.

6. Insulated Glass

The best way to maximize efficiency of your windows is to have insulated glass, which is used in double-pane and triple-pane windows. In between the panes of glass is a space separator; in this space gas such as argon or krypton is added to provide additional insulation between the panes.

Low-e glass can be used in these types of windows to add another layer of protection.

Double-paned glass offers protection from heat, cold, water, condensation and all forms of weather. Adding another pane increases that level of protection. A triple-pane glass window is thicker, which means that casements and the window structure will have to be expanded. The additional materials involved in a triple-pane window make this a more expensive option.

Tip: Let a knowledgeable window/door sales consultant help you determine if double- or triple-pane glass is right for your geographic location and/or the location of the sun on your house. You can mix double-pane and triple-pane in the same house!

Different climates, sun exposure and client needs are all important elements in determining the correct window glass for your space. One type of glass does not fit all your needs. Choosing the right type is important and since different types of glass will be needed all over your home, it is necessary to speak with a window dealer.

If you’d like to learn more which glass to choose for your home, contact us today. We’d love to help!

Shutter Maintenance Tips from a Local Expert

As a follow-up to our prior blog about choosing the right shutters for your home, it is important to discuss the maintenance and possible repair of your existing shutters. Even if your shutters look damaged, many times they can be repaired rather than replaced. In addition, regular maintenance of your existing shutters will ensure a long lifetime for this very important decorative aspect of your home.

We spoke to Phil Patterson, owner of Phillip Patterson Painting Inc., about his shutters expertise: repairing versus replacing your shutters, the best ways to maintain your shutters, and mistakes to avoid. He gave us some great advice and guidelines about all things shutters!

 

To Repair or Replace—That Is the Question.

How do you determine if you need to replace your shutters or if can you repair them instead? Patterson gave us this step-by-step checklist:

  • If there are small cracks and/or holes that we can easily fill with caulk or putty, then that’s our first level of repair.
  • If there are areas of rot that are a bit bigger than described above, then we dig out the bad rot and seal and fill with Bondo.
  • If some of the slats are loose or falling out, we put them back in and pull the sides together to tighten all the slats and secure the back of the shutters with metal brackets.
  • If we find the bottom end of the shutter completely rotted, we sometimes can cut it out and replace it with a new piece of wood. However, that can be a bit time consuming and may not be worth the time and effort.
  • You can replace just the metal hardware without replacing the whole shutter. The metal hardware includes hinges, straps and holdbacks. Also, if the metal is still in good condition and there is no corrosion, the finish can be stripped and repainted.

Patterson encourages the homeowner to be realistic, saying that “before we spend TOO much time and money on a bad shutter, we have to decide what’s better for the customer: Repair or Replace.”

Maintenance of Existing Shutters

How important is regular maintenance? What does regular maintenance entail? Patterson says that “the paint is the life of the shutter. If the paint job has failed to the point that the film begins to crack and peel, then the water is getting in. That’s when wood rot begins. The other important thing you can do for a wood shutter to extend the longevity is to install metal caps at the top edge of every shutter. The top edges when exposed to the sun and weather will crack open letting water in.  If you can keep that from happening, you’ll double or triple the life of the shutter.”

It is highly recommended to keep your shutters clean of dirt, debris, insects, birds and even bats. You can accomplish this by brushing them on both sides with a soft bristled brush on a regular basis.

Mistakes to Be Avoided

Here are some common mistakes that shutter owners make that can be avoided.

  1. Not painting them frequently Shutters should be painted at least twice as often as the house they’re hanging on.
  2. Not having metal caps on all the top edges.
  3. Not supporting the outside bottom corner of the shutter with the s-hook Many times, the wider shutters without that support will sag hard, causing the slats to fall out.

In general, the best thing you can do is to keep up the basic maintenance on your shutters with a current paint job using good paint and consistent cleaning practices. Paying attention to the state of your wood shutters and keeping them in good shape is the key to a long lifetime. Many times, fully replacing a shutter is not necessary; repair by a professional is often more than enough to keep them functional and nice.

If you’d like to learn more about shutters, shutter selection or the installation process, contact us today. We’d love to help you add a bit of extra curb appeal to your home!

Choosing the Right Shutters for Your Home

For hundreds of years, shutters have provided a functional cover for windows in homes all over the world. Initially intended for privacy and protection from the elements, shutters now are mostly purely decorative, a nice detail that adds a finishing touch to a house and ramps up the curb appeal!

Choosing shutters for your windows requires some thought and planning to ensure you get the right type for your window. Of course, having them installed correctly is also critical. Here are some elements to consider when choosing new shutters…  

1. Fit

When choosing your shutters, fit is of utmost importance. The shutters need to be proportional to the structure of the windows. In other words, the shutter should be the same shape and proportions as the windows. For this reason, it’s important to choose shutters that complement the shape of your windows.

2. Alignment

Once the fit is established, it is important to align the horizontal and vertical elements with the structure of your window. Shutter rails need to align with the rails on the window sashes. The symmetry of the windows should directly match the symmetry of the shutters.

3. Architecture

Choose a shutter style that complements the architectural style of your house and even your neighboring homes. If you are replacing the shutters completely, experts recommend getting as close to the home’s original shutter style as possible.

There are five basic silhouettes: louvered, raised panel, flat panel, board and batten, and Bahama and Bermuda. These shutter types cover most all variations of windows.

4. Installation

When installing shutters, the location of the shutter is key. Shutters should never be attached to the house next to the window. Shutters need to have hinges. They should be mounted on top of the window casing on the hinge. Mounting the shutter on the hinge gives the shutter appearance depth and shadow lines, which is the aesthetic norm. Without shadows, the shutters appear fake and flat.

If you’d like to learn more about shutters, shutter selection or the installation process, contact us today. We’d love to help you add a bit of extra curb appeal to your home!

Why Buying Replacement Doors and Windows Based on Price Is Not Always the Best Idea

As the saying goes, you get what you pay for.

We understand that shopping to find the best deal seems sensible, but when you shop for replacement windows and doors based solely on price, you can put your considerable investment in your home at risk. Below you’ll find some of the reasons the cost of windows and doors is not always comparable and how Door Store and Windows goes above and beyond to ensure you get the best final product for your money.

Select Quality Products Built by Reliable Manufacturers

All door and window manufacturers are not created equal. Each has different manufacturing processes and quality management practices that contribute to the overall excellence of the product. To ensure your doors and windows don’t fail prematurely, make sure to research the manufacturers to determine which offers the best in demonstrated function, strength, and longevity. It also doesn’t hurt to find out how long they’ve been in business. A decades-old company is more likely to have time-tested production systems in place that make it more likely you’ll get a higher standard of door and window. And don’t forget to check the warranties—you don’t want to be left paying for a replacement for your replacement.  Here at Door Store and Windows, we only work with manufacturers that have the best and most predictable quality over time, not to mention industry-leading warranties that protect your investment long after our job is done.

Expert Project Consultation Is Key

Choosing replacement doors and windows might seem like a straight forward process, but if you don’t get it right it could mean more expense down the road. That’s where an expert replacement consultant is invaluable. They can help you determine exactly what product you need to meet your functionality and design requirements. Is your door in an overexposed entry way? You don’t want a wood door. Want your new windows to look like they have always been there? Beware standard sizes used in larger openings. This idea may lower your price, but will ultimately  detract from the overall beauty of  your home. When you work with Door Store and Windows, our project consultants carefully listen to your needs and provide you the best options for your project. We size and order products to perfectly fit your home for the highest level of functionality and aesthetic beauty. We also double—and triple—check everything before ordering to make sure you’re getting exactly what you want.

Don’t Skimp on Installation Supplies

 Using only the best installation supplies available will help your windows and doors perform at their best for a long time. Though there are cheaper options on the market, caulks with multi-year warranties and high-quality spray foam can make all the difference. Anchoring screws, adhesives, and on and on—every aspect of installation matters. That’s why we use only the best in class in all our supplies. It’s worth the cost to ensure there are no weak points in your installation that could come back to haunt you down the road.

Expert Installation Makes the Difference

Replacing windows or doors in an existing home that has settled or experienced other wear and tear is not a project for unskilled workers. A poor install could mean leaks and other issues that lead to serious damage and repair costs. You want to work with installers and service technicians who are seasoned professionals with years in the business. That’s what you get at Door Store and Windows. Our installers are factory-trained and receive ongoing safety training from outside consultants. Every member of our team is drug-tested, bonded, insured, and has passed background and safe-driving tests. To back them up, we supply them with all the best equipment as well, including new trucks and quality tools kept in top notch condition. When your installers can work at the highest level, you receive the highest level of service and expertise in return.

Measuring A Replacement Window

A TDSW Installer measuring the window insert area.

You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know

Don’t be afraid to ask questions.  Some examples are:

  • How invasive to my home is replacing my windows or doors?
  • What will I need to do before and after the installation?
  • Who hauls away the old windows?
  • Will I have to paint the walls or trim in my room after the installation?
  • How long will I have an open “hole” in my house?
  • How long will the installation take?
  • Do the installers clean up after themselves?

Depending on the answers, you may have more expense ahead of you.  Ultimately, knowledge is power.

We Are Here to Answer Any Questions

If you’d like to discuss adding replacement windows or doors to your home, our expert Sales Consultants can help. We’re happy to walk you through all the options to find the perfect fit for your style and budget. Give us a call today to set up a free in-home, no obligation consultation.