Go Back  DoItYourself.com Community Forums > Interior Improvement Center > Doors, Skylights and Windows
Reload this Page >

how do my old windows compare with new basic double pane pellas?

how do my old windows compare with new basic double pane pellas?


  #1  
Old 02-10-09, 06:11 PM
T
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Kansas
Posts: 125
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
how do my old windows compare with new basic double pane pellas?

My home is 20 years old. It has what I think are the original windows. They are wood, casement, double pane, but thats about all I know. I would like to begin replacing them with some of the basic pellas (double hung vinyl) from lowes making some of them bigger to take in more of my view. But is this the wise thing to do?

I can only assume that the windows of today, even the basic ones are leaps and bounds better than even a great window 20 years ago. Plus, I hate the look of these and they are begining to need work for rot, I hate painting them, and almost all the casement mechanisms are broken. While I WANT new windows, would I be making a step forward if I began to replace them or no?

Thanks in advance!
 
  #2  
Old 02-10-09, 07:23 PM
B
Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: New England
Posts: 9,460
Received 47 Upvotes on 43 Posts
“I can only assume that the windows of today, even the basic ones are leaps and bounds better than even a great window 20 years ago.”
One would think so, but one would be WRONG. My old R=2 windows upgraded to standard R=3.3 windows of today is far from what I would call “leaps and bounds”. Now you can pay the bucks and get the super top of the line U=0.2 range for an R=5, but at a grand per window .
Having said all of that, your other reasons “Plus, I hate the look of these and they are beginning to need work for rot, I hate painting them, and almost all the casement mechanisms are broken” are more than sufficient to justify new windows. Oh, and don’t forget the tilt in sash and dividers installed between the panes (my wife’s reasons for new windows).

Seriously, today’s new windows are much better than your 20 year old ones, but don’t look for a three or four year payback. They look nice, they work nice and the better installation will air seal better than your old ones.

Go for it
Bud
 

Last edited by Bud9051; 02-10-09 at 07:24 PM. Reason: spelling
  #3  
Old 02-10-09, 07:46 PM
XSleeper's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 27,239
Received 1,958 Upvotes on 1,755 Posts
I'm pretty sure that the "Pella" vinyl windows you are looking at would NOT be better than your existing windows. First off, Pella bought the Thermastar brand vinyl window so that they could have a piece of the vinyl window market. The Thermastar windows is, IMO, probably one of the lowest quality vinyl windows out there. I don't think you would be happy with them.

I have always been happy with Pella's Designer Series and Architectural Series windows (not the same as the builder's grade Proline's you see in the box stores) but you get what you pay for.
 
  #4  
Old 02-11-09, 06:28 AM
Gunguy45's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 19,281
Received 8 Upvotes on 8 Posts
Don't know whether you've already started measuring, sizing, and pricing...but be prepared for a lot of modification to the opening. Very few double hungs come in the same sizes as casements.

Also, DH vinyl windows will normally have more air leakage than a casement, even an older one. It just much harder to get a good seal and have the windows function smoothly.
 
  #5  
Old 02-11-09, 12:46 PM
L
Member
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Arlington, WA
Posts: 8,670
Upvotes: 0
Received 1 Upvote on 1 Post
I agree with what both XSleeper and Gunguy45 told you.

The Pella's that you find in a big box store are anything but top of the line windows -- they are low end. For a couple dollars more you can go to a glass shop and order mid-range windows that will fit your openings.

If you start changing the rough opening sizes you are getting into a lot of work and increasing the chance of leaks around those openings. BE CAREFUL!!

Double hungs are nice, but I'm not aware of any mfgrs. that make the more than 48" wide. That width of an opening is where you start getting into XO or XOX windows.

And vinyl frames are thicker than wood or aluminum frames, so you are going to lose a little bit of the view for that.

20 years ago low-E was just beginning to hit the market, and what was available 20 years ago in the low-E world was nothing like it is today.
 
  #6  
Old 02-11-09, 12:52 PM
Gunguy45's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 19,281
Received 8 Upvotes on 8 Posts
Just re-read ...if you are switching to DH's partially because of the view...that might not work. The meeting rail where DH latch interferes with most peoples sightlines and disrupts the view in most case. Of course size and height on the wall affect that as well, but as a general rule..casements/fixed windows are used where view is important.
 
  #7  
Old 02-12-09, 05:16 AM
T
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Kansas
Posts: 125
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
thanks for all the replies guys. When I mentioned getting a better view, I was meaning that I was going to add some windows and increase the size. I can handle redoing the bucking and if anything I over insulate. I have a good handle on everything having to do with the window, but I want to make sure I'm not all of the sudden going to have a frigid home because of my new windows. Whomever it was below (sorry forgot the name when typing this) said that the low e and argon and what not was just hitting the market and thats what I was trying to get at. How would a basic pella from lowes compare with a 20 year old better quality window as far as energy efficieny? I can't find any specs or model #'s on my current windows so I can't do an exact comparison. The reason for my initial post was because I find it REALLY hard to believe that a 20 year old window would perform as good as or even better than a basic window today. In fact I would expect it to perform worse.

But I'm not a window anatomy expert so what is your guys opinion on that? Thanks again for the feedback it is greatly appreciated.
 
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: