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Question DetailsAsked on 2/14/2017


Hello - I have a late 70's house and need to replace the windows. We have > 30 windows and I really don't want to spend a fortune. What manufacturer and vendor do you recommend for a lower priced install?
No I am not trying to recoup energy costs.
Our windows are mixture of aluminum and lead single panes and they are all leaking, broken, weak or otherwise ineffective.
White vinyl is not an option on this house. The exterior is brick and stucco tudor - white would stand out like a sore thumb. Ideally would like some sort of gray / putty exterior w/ white interior. Appreciate advice of affordable options.

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Answered 3 years ago by Member Services


You can find some thoughts on window brands and typical costs in the Home > Windows link in Browse Projects, at lower left. You say you are not interested in energy efficiency. There are at least 10 Houstons in the US - but for a house in Houston TX or Houston AK - the two I know about personally - you probably should be looking at a window with at least good thermal efficiency or you will be throwing away a lot of A/C or heating costs, respectively. Certainly at least double-pane - and triple would be recommended at least for Houston, AK.

You want different colors inside and out - so that means either a custom window or painting it - no standard window comes different colors inside and out that I have ever seen. Note you say you do not wantvinyl - but properly prepped (preferably in the manufacturer's shop) vinyl windows can be painted- many but not all manufacturers will do that for extra charge. Some also have overcladding available (usually for wood windows only) to provide both a longer-life exterior surface and pretty much whatever color you want.

You say you don't want to spend a fortune - for normal size windows you are probably looking at about $15,000-30,000 range for the job - VERY rough ballpark - so if that is out of the ballpark for you, then maybe refurbishing some of the better condition ones with new weatherseal and then mayhbe replacing a few of the worst ones might be a solution. This could be a progressive thing too - once you are over about 5-10 windows in a house (unless scaffolding is required to put them in, like large bay or picture windows more than 6-8 feet off the ground) or so you are not likely to get any more discount for a larger number, so maybe you could ease the budget issue by doing the hottest side or the worst ones first, then the others over the years.

You also have the possibility of rehabbing most of the windows - $1000-3000 goes a LONG ways commonly to restoring windows to near original function - with weatherseal replacement, truing up the frame for sticking or gapped ones, and fixing exterior sels around the window frame - and of course replacing any broken panes. The tough part of that is usually finding a window-experienced person to do the work, because many window companies only want to do new installs - but there is usually a major window company plus some semi-retired handymen type with window experience in any significant population area who do this type of work - just takes some calling around.

If I had to throw out a brandname off the cuff that is decent but relatively economic, I would say Marvinor Milgard in Texas, Greatland or Nordic in Alaska.

Be sure to check with local building department whether there are any mandatory energy efficiency standards for windows in your state - not likely in either Houston I know of but maybe.

Also check for local utility, energy program, or statewide energy rebate progams that might cover part of the cost of more energy efficient windows. I think most of the federal rebates expired last year - here is a link to the ones still in effect for 2017.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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