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Window Replacement in Greensboro, North Carolina
Thinking of replacing a window in your Greensboro home? Your city’s mix of hot and cold temperatures mean that you’ll need to be careful about the type of windows you install–otherwise, you could end up spending a fortune on your utility bills.
This guideline will walk you through the basics of energy efficiency in your area, and also provide some much-needed information about rebates you may be eligible for, as well. And, it will give you the rundown on contractors, permits, and inspections and window shopping to boot.
Window Contractor Requirements in Greensboro
In North Carolina, you are allowed to perform repairs around your home on your own; you don’t have to hire a contractor to complete the work for you. However, before you decide to make the replacement yourself, you’ll want to weigh your experience and the scope of the job. Replacements that include alterations to interior and exterior walls are actually large jobs that require knowledge of the city and state building codes. Meanwhile, when you perform work on your home by yourself, you also assume liability for any damages that you incur.
Although picking out a contractor can be a hassle, it can really pay to hire a professional to help you if you don’t have previous experience with window repair. To make the process of selecting a contractor easier, however, you can perform a few checks on potential candidates to narrow your selection down. Ask to see licenses–insist on hiring a contractor who holds the proper certifications for your work. You can also check with the city’s Development Services department to see whether or not your contractor has a clean record when it comes to paying building fees. Lastly, ask for a few references. A true professional will be happy to provide them.
Applying for Window Permits in Greensboro
If you’re making a direct replacement of your home’s window, you may not need to file for a permit. However, especially if you’ll be adjusting the dimensions of the window, necessitating alterations to the surrounding wall, you may be asked to file a permit with the city’s Development Services department. The department is located at 300 W. Washington Street, Greensboro, NC 27401, and you can view a sample of the permit application here. Note that the permitting process sometimes requires additional documentation to be submitted as well, such as project plans and drawings.
Window Requirements in Greensboro
North Carolina experiences a mixture of temperatures throughout the year–and that means windows here need to be able to keep a home warm throughout winter and cool in the summer months. These properties are best represented by two different industry measurements–what’s known as the U-factor, and a second specification called solar heat gain coefficient, or SHGC. U-factor is the ability of the window to reduce heat loss through the glass–how well it insulates, in other words. SHGC is how much heat the window allows to come in through the glass–the amount of sunlight it lets in, or how well it shades your home. In your area, windows perform well when they have a U-factor lower than 0.50 and a SHGC below 0.40. But that’s just the minimum recommendation–the lower these ratings are, the more efficient the windows are, which means you’ll save more on your heating and cooling costs. Ideally, when you’re window shopping it’s best to look for products that have a ENERGY STAR logo included on their labeling. That means that they’ve been rated by the EPA for maximum energy performance in your area.
Window Inspections in Greensboro
After the window goes in and the work is complete, if you were asked to file for a permit, you’ll need to have a city inspector drop by and review the installation before you can consider the project fully done. Call Development Services to get scheduled for a visit, and be prepared to provide the permit and any associated project paperwork on inspection day.
Insulation and Window Care in Greensboro
Greensboro’s climate figures into how you’ll care for your new window, as well. For one thing, you’ll see a lot better results, especially in the winter, if you make sure that the glass has been properly sealed and caulked–in the rush to finish a job, this is one area that often gets overlooked. The caulking should form a neat bead between the glass and the joints, all around. Furthermore, weatherstripping can be installed around the moving parts to keep the area totally insulated.
Additionally, especially if you’ve purchased windows with low emissivity glass, you’ll need to watch out for how you clean the glass as well. Always wash with just soap and water, and do it in low heat, when the sun’s rays aren’t at their strongest.
Rebates and Incentives in Greensboro
Purchasing energy-efficient products often qualifies you for rebates and incentives offered by your local and federal government. In Greensboro’s case, there are no such programs available locally; however the federal government provides a rebate for those products with the ENERGY STAR label, which is a case to be made for purchasing them. The return is up to 10% of the cost of materials, up to $200. You can apply for it by filing form 5965 with your federal income taxes.