Repair vs. Replacement Windows for Homes

older windows in need of repair or replacementIt’s tempting for homeowners to consider replacing their windows when they have several cracks, are difficult to operate, or don’t offer the energy efficiency they need. While these reasons are understandable, sometimes repairing the windows is a better option. It all depends on the severity of the damage, the homeowner’s budget, and several other factors

The Hassle Factor

People who don’t have a lot of time to devote to cleaning and maintaining their existing windows may want to opt for new ones. Some of the most important things to consider here include:

  • Whether the homeowner must struggle to open the window when he or she desires ventilation.
  • The ease in cleaning the windows. Many older windows are bulky and cumbersome to clean.
  • If the current window requires painting and scraping, is this something the homeowner has the time and desire to do?
  • Does condensation regularly make the windows fog up and make it difficult to see out of them? Some people may not have a problem with wiping off the condensation while others feel annoyed by it.

The Comfort Factor

By design, older windows are not as energy efficient as newer ones. That means people living inside the home may feel too hot or too cold quite often. Double-pane windows help better regulate temperature problems and eliminate condensation. Better insulated windows lose less warmth in the winter and cold air in the summer, meaning that the A/C and heating appliances run less often, leading to less energy expenses for homeowners.

The Cost Factor

For most people, cost is the most important determining factor when deciding whether to repair or replace their windows. As far as repairs are concerned, the cost depends on how much of the window needs fixing, the supplies necessary to fix it, and whether the homeowner completes a do-it-yourself project or hires someone else to do it.

For example, repairing small areas of rot on the outside of the window could cost as little as $25 for epoxy when people choose to complete the job themselves. If an entire window pane requires replacement, the cost jumps up to about $250. When the frame has rotted away entirely, rebuilding a new one costs nearly the same as purchasing a replacement.

Windows with small cracks are less expensive to repair than to replace. Buying a new window becomes the better choice when an entire window pane has sustained extensive damage. The one possible exception to this is vintage or multi-pane windows that could be difficult or extremely costly to replace.

Evaluating New Window Quality

Before making the leap and buying new windows, homeowners should make sure that they are satisfied with the availability of replacement parts, energy efficiency, and warranty. They should also ensure that caring for the new windows doesn’t take up more of their time than the old ones did.