What to Expect During a Window Replacement

First time homeowners considering a window replacement for their property should become familiar with the window installation process. Information found in this post will provide you with a clear perspective of the many facets involved during window replacement. In addition, you will also discover tips for what to do before the installation begins to help the project run smoothly and more efficiently.

  • Selection and measurements
  • Acquiring permits for new window installation
  • Scheduling an installation date
  • Preparing your home
  • Unforeseen circumstances
  • Asking questions

measure windows

Selection and Windows Measurements

When you contact a sales representative or window supplier, you’ll be asked a series of questions such as what type of windows you’re interested in, the style, frame material, whether you need impact-resistant window panes, glazing options, the number of windows, and price range. Your sales rep will provide you with information and schedule a date for their in-house contractor to visit your home to take measurements of the windows.

After measurements are taken and all questions are answered, your sales rep or supplier should provide you with a detailed, written estimate. Review the estimate carefully to ensure it includes the type and style of window desired and that the price covers both removal and installation, job site clean up and removal of old windows. In addition, verify with your contractor or supplier who is responsible for permits when applicable as well as the warranty period for both the windows and installation.

Acquiring Windows Permits

Check with your local building department to find out if a permit is needed for new window installation. This is usually the case if the current window opening will be modified to accommodate a different size or type of window. A permit may also be required if you live in a state considered to be in the hurricane zone located along the east coast and Gulf coast where impact-resistant windows are mandatory.

Scheduling the Windows Installation Project

The number of windows being replaced will determine the number of days the project will take. On average, expect between a two and three day timeframe to start and complete the project. This is contingent on everything running smoothly and no additional repairs needed or inclement weather interfering with the installation schedule.

windows installation

Preparing for the Windows Installation to Save Time & Money

Preparing your home prior for the arrival of the crew not only saves time, it will also save you money. Extra time the crew spends on prepping your home could lead to additional costs. You can easily take care of the following prep work yourself.

  • Clear a pathway to each window both indoors and outdoors. This means removing any obstacles such as flowerpots, patio chairs, barbecue grills, and toys located outside. If hedges or vines are covering the windows, trim them back so the installer can access the window easily.
  • Inside—move tables, lamps, throw rugs, breakable items, wall hangings/pictures, and window dressings including drapes, blinds, or shades. You don’t want anything in the way that could slow down the crew or cause them to trip.
  • Make room for the crew’s equipment so they can reach it quickly and easily.
  • Since there may be cutting, caulking, and painting involved with the project, lay drop cloths over floor and furnishings for protection.
  • Before the project begins, have everything in place and ready to go. For safety purposes, if you have pets, put them in a safe and secure location and keep children away from the work area.

Unforeseen Circumstances During a Windows Replacement

Be prepared for the unexpected. Nothing may arise, but until a window is removed, the contractor won’t know if there are underlying issues that need attention. This can mean an increase in the initial cost of the project.

Should weather become an issue, this can prolong the project. As a general rule, only one window is removed and replaced, at a time. This ensures that your home is not exposed to the elements, especially if the project runs over time, exposed window openings would not need to be boarded up until the crew can return.

Ask Questions – Be Involved

A professional window installer knows their business, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t ask questions and monitor the project.

When the contractor arrives, walk with him from room to room to ensure everything is in order. If you have any questions about the process, this would be the time to ask.

Throughout the project, be available should the contractor have any questions for you.

When the job is completed, walk through each room noting any problems or issues you may need to address with the contractor.

New windows add value to your home as well as helping to make it more energy-efficient. Use the knowledge of your sales representative and contractor to make the best choice in a window that will provide a solid return on your investment.

9 Responses

  1. Jen Pack

    My husband and I are planning on getting replacement windows this fall, so I really appreciate this information on what to expect. I like how you explained that a window professional will most likely come out to our home and take measurements so they know which windows will work best. I imagine that in order to have success during the replacement process, it will be vital that we find and choose a company that is highly recommended and has good reviews.

  2. Kendall Ryder

    Preparing for the window company is a good idea so that they have all the room they need. That way, you won’t have things in your home obstructing them. That will just cause the whole situation to take much longer. If you want the company in and out, you should make sure to clear pathways for them! Hopefully that will speed the process.

  3. Braden Bills

    I need to have my window replaced. It’s interesting to see how much work they put into it! It’s nice to know that they care about doing the job right the first time!

  4. Suzan Halterman

    Thanks for sharing. I really like how you said to make room so the crew can get to the window easier. My husband will have to move the couch and dresser for me so the repairmen can get to the window without having to move all that stuff their selves.

  5. Laurie

    Great tips on making sure to move things to ensure it is easy for the contractors to do their job. Thanks for sharing!

  6. I like how you mention that a professional window installer knows their business, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t ask questions and monitor the project. I need to have my windows replaced since they have been letting in a lot of wind and rain into my house. I will have to find a window installer that doesn’t mind me asking him questions during the process so I can understand how the window works and how I can keep it maintained.

  7. Jeff Evans

    I am glad that I could find information on what to expect before getting my windows replaced. My home is about thirty years old now and I think new windows could really spruce the house up. Thanks for the helpful information!

    • Lauren Pezzullo

      We’re glad this helped you, Jeff!

  8. Annika Larson

    We want to have our windows replaced soon and this article really helped us know what to expect. I’ve been wondering about what I need to do to prepare, and you answered all my questions! We will be sure to take your suggestion and clear a pathway to all windows as well as move tables and things hanging on the wall! Thanks for sharing!

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