Window Replacement Tips for Homebuyers in Dallas-Fort Worth
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Window Replacement Tips for Homebuyers in Dallas-Fort Worth: Your Comprehensive Guide

Are you a new homeowner in the vibrant Dallas-Fort Worth area, looking to spruce up your space with some much-needed window upgrades? Or perhaps you're in the process of purchasing a home and want to ensure you're equipped with the knowledge to make informed decisions about window replacements? Look no further! In this guide, we'll provide you with invaluable tips and insights to navigate the world of window replacement with confidence.

If you're still in your option period, you'll find a helpful list at the end of this post. The list will give you an idea of what to look out for, what might be repairable and what will eventually need to be replaced.

Understanding the Basics: Glass Replacement vs Window Replacement

Before diving into the nitty-gritty of window replacement, let's clarify the distinction between glass replacement and window replacement. Glass replacement involves replacing just the glass pane within a window frame, typically due to damage or defects. On the other hand, window replacement entails replacing the entire window unit, including the frame, sash, and hardware. While glass replacement may suffice for minor issues, window replacement is often the preferred choice for addressing larger structural concerns or upgrading to more energy-efficient options.

Learn more about Glass Replacement vs Whole Window Replacement

Managing Expectations: The Timeframe for Window Replacement Projects

One crucial aspect to bear in mind when planning a window replacement project is the timeframe involved. Unlike some home improvement tasks that can be completed in a matter of days, window replacement projects typically require a longer timeline. From the initial consultation to the ordering of materials to the actual installation, the entire process can span several weeks. However, rest assured that the wait is well worth it for the enhanced comfort, energy savings, and aesthetic appeal that new windows bring to your home.

Unfortunately, once an offer is accepted on a house, more often than not there is not enough time to complete a full window replacement project before closing. If you notice anything that might be concerning make sure to communicate that with your inspector and have them pay close attention to windows, doors, siding, and roofing—all aspects of your home exterior affect energy efficiency and if damaged or in poor condition can result in costly repairs or replacements. Be aware that home inspectors are required to follow specific guidelines when conducting an inspection and there may be limitations to their report.

Identifying the Signs: When to Consider Replacement Windows

So, how do you know if it's time to bid farewell to your old windows and usher in a new era of clarity and efficiency? Keep an eye out for these telltale signs:

Drafts and Air Leaks: If you notice drafts or feel air seeping through gaps around your windows, it's a clear indication that your windows are no longer providing adequate insulation.

Condensation and Moisture Buildup: Excessive condensation between window panes or water pooling on window sills can signal issues with seal failure or improper ventilation, potentially leading to mold and mildew growth.

Difficulty Opening or Closing: Windows that are difficult to operate due to warped frames, damaged hardware, or worn-out balance mechanisms are not only inconvenient but also pose safety hazards.

Visible Damage: Cracks, chips, rot, or decay in window frames are not only unsightly but also compromise the structural integrity of your windows, making them susceptible to further deterioration over time.

Different Types of Windows and Operating Styles: single pane vs double pane, single hung vs double hung windows, and tempered vs annealed—what does it all mean?

When it comes to window replacements, you'll encounter a variety of options to suit your preferences and architectural style. More specifically your window options will include deciding between your window dealer and contractor, window brands, profiles, shapes, colors, sizes, hardware, glass packages, etc.

Many buyers enter the window buying journey thinking a window is a window is a window but after meeting with multiple companies and doing research online, they realize there are many choices and considerations involved in this type of project.

Understanding single pane vs double pane windows

If your home was built in the 1970s or earlier and still has the original windows it's highly likely the windows have single pane glass in them. Some may even be made of multiple single panes of glass. When we talk about modern double pane windows we're talking about insulated glass units.

Windows with double pane glass are a standard in today's window industry because you can't meet energy code requirements without these at minimum. Many homeowners choose to upgrade these for efficiency purposes even if the glass has no cracks or breaks in them.

Learn more: Why it's time to replace single pane windows

Here are some common types of windows and their operating styles:

Double Hung Window: These windows feature two sashes that slide vertically within the frame, allowing for both the top and bottom sashes to open and close independently for enhanced ventilation and easy cleaning.

Single Hung Window: Similar to double hung windows, single hung windows have two sashes; however, only the bottom sash is operable while the top sash remains fixed.

Horizontal Sliding Window: Also known as gliding windows, these windows feature one or more sashes that slide horizontally within the frame, offering a sleek and contemporary look with effortless operation.

Picture Window: Picture windows are stationary windows that do not open or close, providing unobstructed views and ample natural light while serving as a focal point in any room.

Casement Window: Casement windows are hinged on one side and swing outward like a door when opened, allowing for maximum ventilation and easy operation with a crank mechanism.

More window styles, shapes, and configurations are available, however, options vary by manufacturer. We'll get into annealed glass vs tempered glass below.

Explore our projects to see examples of replacement windows installed on Dallas-Fort Worth homes

Residential Building Codes and Tempered Glass Requirements

Residential building codes mandate the use of tempered glass in specific windows based on their location within the home. Tempered glass, also known as safety glass, is designed to shatter into small, granular pieces rather than sharp shards upon impact, reducing the risk of injury in case of breakage.

Common locations where tempered glass may be required include windows near doors, windows within a certain height from the floor, and windows in close proximity to bathtubs or showers. Be sure to check local building codes and regulations to ensure compliance when planning your window replacement project.

Throughout the rest of your house most windows will be made from annealed glass. If you're considering replacement windows ask your sales consultant about the differences between single strength vs double strength glass and any additional glass packages that may be available.

Learn more: What is a Tempered Glass Window?

Installing Energy Efficient Windows

Investing in energy-efficient windows can reduce your home's energy consumption and utility bills while enhancing comfort and curb appeal. When selecting energy-efficient windows, consider the following factors:

  1. Window Materials: Opt for windows made from high-quality materials such as vinyl, fiberglass, or wood-clad frames with low emissivity (Low-E) coatings and insulated glass to minimize heat transfer and maximize thermal performance.
  2. Professional Installation: The installation process is paramount to the overall performance and longevity of your new windows. Working with an experienced team ensures that your windows are properly sealed, insulated, and aligned for optimal efficiency and durability.
  3. Quick and Easy Process for Experienced Pros: Contrary to common misconceptions, installing energy-efficient windows should be a relatively quick and easy process, especially when carried out by seasoned professionals. With meticulous planning and attention to detail, your installation day should proceed smoothly, minimizing disruption to your daily routine.

Remember, window installation is the most critical aspect of a window project. Even a budget-friendly window, when installed correctly, can outperform a premium window installed incorrectly. Prioritize the quality of installation to maximize the benefits of your energy-efficient windows for years to come.

Learn more about energy efficient windows

Repair or Replace? A List for Homebuyers Concerned About Windows

If you're like the thousands of homebuyers in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, you've probably walked into several homes and seen dozens if not hundreds of windows in all the homes you've visited. To be fair, for many the windows aren't something that stands out unless you're admiring how much natural light there is in a room, the windows in the house have been recently upgraded and you're excited about the beautiful and unobstructed views you're going to be able to enjoy, OR there's a notable problem.

One thing we know is true is window replacement projects aren't cheap so windows (and exterior doors) are definitely something you should be paying attention to when shopping for a new or pre-loved house.

There are lots of things to look for but here are some things we think are important to consider in this particular journey.

  • Do the windows look new or old?
  • What are they made of?
    • Metal (that may be aluminum or steel, more likely aluminum windows)
    • Vinyl (some people call them plastic or UPVC windows, most call them vinyl windows)
    • Wood (solid wood on the interior and exterior, some have exterior cladding, some have painted interiors)
  • Do they open and close easily?
  • Can they be locked easily?
  • Are they single pane or double pane?
  • If they are double pane are they foggy between the panes? (in the space you cannot touch)
  • Are there cracks in the glass or is the glass broken?
  • Are the window glazing beads in good condition?

The short of it—do the windows need to be replaced?

You can decide to replace your windows any time you want. We meet with homeowners who want to replace their windows for aesthetic reasons as often as we meet with homeowners who want to save money on their energy bills. There are some situations where you'll definitely want to move forward with window replacement, below are five concerns often mentioned in inspector reports.

The window glass is broken or cracked

If the glass is broken but the window functions well and you're happy with the look of it aside from the glass you should contact a glass replacement company. Most window replacement companies do not replace glass in windows not purchased or installed by them.

The window looks foggy or the window beads are damaged

If the window glass is foggy and the seal has broken you have two options, glass replacement or window replacement. Glass replacement is the short term solution and window replacement is the long term solution, if you plan on living in the house for more than 5 years, opt for window replacement.

Window beads, also referred to as glazing beads (not all windows have these), are a window component that can be removed allowing the glass unit to be replaced without replacing the entire sash. Damage to the glazing bead can be man made but also a result of normal wear of the window and if you aren't seeing seal failure yet, it will become noticeable eventually. If you plan on living in the house for more than 5 years you'll want to replace the windows.

The windows are difficult to open or close

When the windows are difficult to open or close it is typically a sign of a worn out or broken window balance. While window balances can be replaced you'll need to source replacement parts and find a skilled repair person to complete the replacement.

It also may be a sign of warping or a window that is no longer square, these cannot be repaired. In either situation, when the window is difficult to open or close as intended most homeowners choose replacement.

Rot or water damage on the window frame or sash

Water damage on wood windows is a common problem. If there is wood rot or the paint or sealant on the wood is damaged it needs to be repaired or replaced. In this situation if the house is in a historic district and you are required to preserve the original windows you will need to contact a window restoration specialist and if that is not the case you can contact a window replacement company. If you contact a window replacement company, make sure they are aware the existing windows are made of wood and whether you prefer to move forward with wood windows or want to switch to a vinyl or composite option. Not every company is equipped with wood window specialists, you'll want to make sure to work with one that is so they can help you understand potential challenges and opportunities.

Caulk around the window is damaged

Damage to the caulk around windows can result from contraction and expansion that happens as a result of seasonal temperature shifts. Caulk can be replaced by a handyman and is an important repair. Missing or damaged caulk can lead to air and water leaks as well as give critters a way into your home. Unless there are additional problems with your windows this typically does not require window replacement.

How to get a quote for replacement windows on a house you don't own yet

Most shoppers will find it difficult to schedule an appointment for a free consultation for replacement windows when they don't own the house they want quoted. The cost of a consultation will vary depending on the company you are trying to schedule fee, often if you decide to move forward the fee can be credited to the purchase price when you sign your contract. To avoid paying a consultation fee most buyers schedule the consultation for soon after closing.

Homeowners in the Dallas-Fort Worth area can get an idea of pricing for windows by using our window pricing calculator. This tool allows you to build a rough estimate and is a great resource if you aren't sure if window replacement is the right choice.


As you embark on your journey as a homeowner in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, remember that your windows play a crucial role in enhancing the comfort, aesthetics, and energy efficiency of your home. By understanding the differences between glass replacement and window replacement, managing your expectations regarding project timelines, familiarizing yourself with the various types of windows and operating styles, staying informed about city codes and tempered glass requirements, and prioritizing the installation of energy-efficient windows, you'll be well-equipped to make informed decisions that benefit your home for years to come.

If you're ready to embark on your window replacement journey, don't hesitate to reach out to our team of experts. We're here to help you transform your house into the home of your dreams, one window at a time. Happy renovating!

Ariana Martinez
Ariana Martinez
April 27, 2024


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