World of Windows

By: Danny Lipford

Danny Lipford examining window

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In this episode, Danny shares his insights on how make repairs to older windows and when to replace them.

Danny details how to replace window hardware, repair counterweights, free windows that have been painted shut, and even how to make windows more efficient by adding foam tape weather stripping. Also included is step-by-step guidance on replacing a broken pane of glass, re-glazing, replacing a full sash, and options in replacement windows.

Producer's Notes from Allen Lyle

I really anticipate this as being one of our more popular shows. Face it, if you have a house, you’ve got windows and, eventually, you’re going to run into some problems. You might be surprised at just how much square footage the windows in your home includes, and doors and windows are the major culprits for energy loss. In fact, the amount of energy loss is rather staggering. You might want to sit down for this one.

cross-section of a double pane window

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, the energy lost through both commercial and residential windows costs American consumers around $25,000,000,000.00 every year. Yes, that’s twenty-five billion. A study by the University of California puts it into perspective by comparing it to the value of oil delivered by the Alaskan pipeline. Your best bet, if you have single-pane windows, is to replace them with the double-paned insulated models. Make sure they are rated as “low-emissivity” windows. This quality can further reduce energy lost by an added 35% over normal double-glazed windows.

Installing Windows

Removing a window

I don’t want to mislead you, though. Replacing your windows will be expensive. If you shell out the dough, though, you’ll recoup the loss in energy savings. Now, Danny mentioned that this is a job best left for the professional. However, it doesn’t mean that you can’t make the attempt. A big chunk of change is going to be for the labor of installation. If you’re a fairly handy person, why not do it yourself? The Kight Home Center, based out of Evansville, Indiana has a great web site that details a step-by-step procedure to replace windows.

Choosing Windows

When it comes to choosing a good replacement window, you need to do your homework, because not all glass is created equal. You need a good source for unbiased opinion, and the Efficient Windows Collaborative is the place to go. They have a ton of useful information on energy-efficient windows and what you should look for. One of my favorite tools on their site is a cost comparison of windows specific to your region of the country. You can even differentiate between new construction and remodeling.

Of course, you can also read Choosing The Right Windows, right here on this website.

Other Tips From This Episode

Simple Solutions with Joe Truini:
Easy Workbench

Easy Work Bench

Create an easy workbench for your open stud wall garage or shop by cutting two 1×4’s and a 2x4diagonal brace. Join them together with drywall screws. Slip the 1×4’s around the exposed studs and attach them with drywall screws to the shed. Attach one long drywall screw into the bottom of the 2×4 diagonal brace. This will create an incredibly strong bench top workspace because all the weight is transferred to the diagonal brace. And, because there are no legs to the workbench there’s plenty of floor space for boxes and the like. Top the 1×4’s with a notched piece of plywood. The notches should go around the studs so there’s a nice tight fit against the wall. (Watch This Video)

Best New Products:

Best New Products with Danny Lipford:
American Standard sink with Scotchgard Protector

American Standard sink with Scotch Guard Protector

With all the toothpaste, soap, shaving cream and make-up that’s used in a bathroom, a sink can become full of grime pretty quick. Several bathroom sinks by American Standard are taking the hassle out of cleaning with their unique Scotchgard surface protection. Supposedly, you could even write on the sink with a marker and it would still come off. Now that’s tough compared to toothpaste and soap stains so we’re talking a really easy to clean sink here. The unique finish not only makes it easy to wipe away grime but it also allows water to bead up and run off into the drain instead of collecting in the sink and causing water spots. The American Standard bathroom sink with Scotchgard is available at The Home Depot.

Around the Yard with Tricia Craven Worley:
Landscape Barriers

Weeding stinks. And, how do you know whether to use plastic or one of those woven weed barriers?

Advantages and Disadvantages:

Landscape Barriers

  • Fabric weed barriers let moisture and air through, while plastic is able to keep water away from basements and foundations.
  • Fabric blocks sunlight from the weed seeds hiding in the soil so they have less chance of germinating, but still allows moisture and air to work their way to the soil and roots.

Using fabric: Make sure to cover the barrier with 3 to 4 in. of mulch; otherwise, weed seeds can find their way down to the fabric and actually take root through it.

Using plastic: Slope the soil away from your foundation 1 or 2 in. per foot, then install black plastic. Slit the plastic near the plants so water can penetrate to the roots. Gravel will keep things like mulch and wood chips in place or you can use metal staples to secure the plastic. (Watch This Video)

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