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Preparing your home’s exterior for storm season in Texas

By Doors, Storm, Windows

Current events taking place in the world today, such as the COVID-19 outbreak, have been making quite an impact in our neck of the woods. It doesn’t help that this major event in history is happening right at the beginning of our, already intense, storm season.

Every state and region has its own storm season, and in North Texas, spring is the main event of stormy weather. From early March until late August, high winds, heavy rains, hail, severe thunderstorms, and tornadoes are not uncommon. The brunt of it hits from mid-March until the end of June.

Spring cleaning may take care of your home’s interior and its landscaping, but you also need to think about your home’s exterior. Here are 5 key actions you can take to bolster your home for the upcoming Texas storms.

1. Invest In A Window Upgrade

Older windows often tend to develop drafts, which is bad enough, but in the rainy season, leaks can develop through those same openings. That’s an even bigger problem. Foundation settling can cause window frames to warp, become too tight or too loose, or cause fissure lines above and/or below the window.

All of these reasons, plus the benefit of better weather protection, boosted energy efficiency, and enhanced curb appeal argue for spring as an excellent time to invest in a window upgrade in the North Texas Panhandle.

2. Get Better Doors & Storm Doors

Water and wind – think drafts and leaks, can also affect your exterior doors during the Texas storm season. It may be time for a new front door, back door, garage door, or storm door.

Adding a door sweep, more insulation around doors, or repainting or restaining doors with exposed wood may sometime be enough. But a newer, stronger door with a higher energy efficiency rating would help even more!

3. Take Care Of Any Siding Repairs

If you notice any siding pieces that have come loose, slipped down, buckled, warped in the Texas sun over the years, or cracked up in a past hail storm, it’s a good time to take care of necessary repairs. Well-installed siding will help prevent water from getting behind your home’s exterior and finding its way through into the interior.

Upgrading to a higher grade of vinyl siding or to steel siding will do even more to make sure your building successfully weathers this year’s string of storms.

4. Clean Out Gutters & Downspouts

When gutters and downspouts are clogged with sticks, leaves, and other debris, it can make water back up during a storm. This may lead to wood rot of your fascia boards or the edge of your roof deck. It could also cause an interior leak and encourage mold and mildew growth. And it may allow water to eat away at your home’s foundation when it doesn’t drain down the gutters properly.

If gutters are sagging, they need to be nailed back up straight. If they are leaking, that must be addressed with waterproof gutter caulk. In extreme cases, you may wish to simply replace your guttering system.

Taking steps now to protect your home’s exterior during the storm season will pay big dividends by preventing damage and expenses down the road. For a free estimate on energey efficient, storm-safe siding and windows, contact Double J Siding & Windows in Amarillo, Texas, today!

 

winter replacement window

Will your windows last through the winter?

By Windows No Comments

Winterproofing your old windows and doors – and your whole home, maybe the immediate action you need to take. But on the other hand, winter can be a great time to order new replacement windows and doors, and you need to think more long term about the future of your home’s energy efficiency and decor. Why not start the new year right with brand new replacement windows and/or doors that look great, work perfect, and last for decades to come?

But before you get started, you first need to exercise a little pre-planning and practical preparation – here are 5 key steps to follow:


Investigate Current Window Condition

The first step is to take account of the current condition of your windows and doors. Are there any air leaks? Are the frames warped or rotting out? What about energy efficiency – do you have products with the Energy Star mark of approval?

Once you conclude that your windows are outdated or in poor condition and need to be replaced, the next step is to start catching a vision and formulating a plan.


Get Creative With Replacement Windows / Doors

You may want to get your creative juices flowing and think outside the box – something beyond just a straight-forward switch-out. Perhaps, you may want to put a bay window in where a picture window is now to let in maximum light.

Or, you may want to install a crank-out window in place of a double-hung window since both are usually the same size. Sliding windows/doors, modernistic “geometric” windows, automated screens, built-in blinds, classic shutters, customized windows shapes and sizes, and custom-built entry and storm doors are all among the many possibilities!


Take Time To Budget For Your Project

To many, crunching some numbers and budgeting for upcoming windows and door replacement projects can be as fun as taking measurements and envisioning a new ambiance. But even if math “is not your thing,” it’s a necessary step.

Make out several possible plans and get some quotes on the necessary products and services. Compare quotes and make adjustments until you find the perfect way to combine affordability with a result you will be totally satisfied with.


Choose A Reputable, Local Contractor

The next step is to decide on which contractor you will hire to take out your old windows/doors and install the replacements. Check out examples of contractors’ past work, read reviews by real past customers, do some research online, and find out who is favored by the BBB.

There is a lot more to consider than just comparing quotes when choosing an installation company – so don’t neglect to “do your homework!”


Schedule & Prep The Work Area

Before replacement windows or a new door can be placed, the work area will need to be cleared of furniture, curtains, blinds, pictures (that might fall due to vibrations nearby), and any household clutter.

Also, order as early as possible if you are getting custom-built windows – but note that wait times are usually much shorter during the winter months. Planning and scheduling ahead will make the project go quicker and smoother on installation day.

For more information on getting ready for new replacement windows or new doors or a free no-obligation quote, contact the experts at Double J Siding & Windows in Amarillo, TX, today!

 

windows for winter

7 Ways to Winter Proof Your Doors & Windows.

By Windows No Comments

As the cold season deepens, the need for well insulated – and at the same time fully functional, house windows and doors becomes more and more obvious.
If you have old, outdated windows/doors that may be in poor condition, replacement may be the wisest option. But in many other instances, you simply need to get organized and implement some winterizing strategies on your current windows and doors.
Here are 7 ways to winter-proof your windows and doors this winter so you can stay warm and keep energy efficiency high at the same time!

1. Install Weatherstripping & Sweeps

Maybe you’ve noticed some drafts, or perhaps, you’ve discovered a problem with your house windows and doors after a professional energy audit. One of the first things to do to correct the problem and start saving money is to install weatherstripping on all of your doors.
You should also install a wood sweep on your most frequently used doors – ones that can be painted to match the door’s style and color.

2. Use Foam Insulation

If your door or window is slightly warped or imperfect, you can cover up the look and block drafts by putting on sticky-back foam insulation tape.
You simply cut the foam to size and press it on in the relevant areas. You can choose between softer and more rigid forms of foam. Be sure the product can be customized to fit the dimensions of your doors and windows.

3. Touch Up Exterior Caulking

In many cases, exterior beads of caulk around windows crack or shrink over the years, which allows drafts and/or leaks. Get a matching color and a caulking gun and go to work! You only need to recaulk areas where the bead has been damaged or is badly stained.

4. Use A “Door Snake”

Instead of having to use a towel or your clothes to block the bottom of doors for rooms you are heating this winter, why not buy a helpful little “door snake” to do the job? This weighted fabric tube is perfect for keeping cold air out and heated air in!

5. Invest In “Thermal Curtains”

Heavy, dark-colored curtains made of fabric with a high heat-absorption rate are called “thermal curtains.” For the winter at least, you can change out the curtains to thermal ones. You can open the curtains during the sunniest part of the day and close them the rest of the time for the most efficient overall effect.

6. Apply Window Film

If you have single-paned glass windows or if you have window air leaks, the immediate solution might be to apply interior window film. This may not be a permanent way to winterize your home, but it will do until you can fix the air leaks or replace the windows.

7. Have New Windows / Doors Installed

It may be time to winterize by purchasing new house windows and/or doors before it gets too cold. Especially if none of the other strategies are working – but even just to modernize and upgrade at the same time as winterproofing, calling an installation expert may be the best course to take.
For more helpful advice on winterproofing your home this cold season or to get a free, no-obligation quote on new house windows and doors, contact Double J Siding & Windows in Amarillo, Texas, today!

replacement windows

5 Signs it’s Time to Replace your Windows

By Windows

Maybe you are in the middle of a home renovation project (or thinking about starting one soon.) Perhaps, you are already planning on having new siding installed on your house. Or, it may be simply that you’ve noticed some problems with your old windows lately and are wondering if it’s time to replace them.

Windows are a critical component of every building, standing as they do at the interface of the outdoors and indoors. They typically last from 20 to 40 years, depending on their quality, type, and location – but eventually, they need to be replaced. Here are the top 5 signs that it may be time.

1. Visible Damage And/or Leaks

One sign it may be time for new windows is obvious, visible damage. Windows can chip, crack, permanently stain, rot (if wood windows), and leak.

You may have noticed such damage to some or all of your windows and realize it would be almost impossible to fix it short of full replacement. And, in fact, it could cost almost as much to repair as to replace windows that are very badly damaged.

2. Drafts & Poor Energy Efficiency

Another sign you need better windows is when you always seem to feel a draft in the house and never seem able to get warm enough when the heat is on or cool enough when the AC is running.

This is directly connected, of course, to abnormal spikes in your electric and/or natural gas bill. And newer, more energy-efficient makes and models of windows can save you money month after month.

3. Opening And Closing Your Windows Is Difficult

Windows that are too tough to open/close become a problem instead of a solution. You want fresh air in your home, but not the rain. You want to be able to securely lock up your windows at night or when away without a struggle. Full functionality and ease of use is a must.

Also, if your windows “drop” suddenly down instead of sliding up/down normally, that’s a sign replacement is the answer. You shouldn’t have to worry about dropping windows and shattering glass or use a stick to prop them open.

4. The Noise Keeps Getting Through

Many modern windows are able to reduce noise levels greatly, but if your windows are poorly sealed or use badly outdated glass, just about all of the outside noise may be getting through.

Noise-reducing, dual-insulated-glass windows can quiet things down fast! Talk to a pro about finding the “quietest” window on the market.

5. Your Home is Lacking Curb Appeal

Sharp-looking windows can greatly boost a home’s overall curb appeal. They can highlight your siding color and can be a big selling point if you are planning on listing your home soon.

If, however, the window paint is faded and the style is all too outdated, your windows may have become an eyesore instead. Replacing them with elegant, “snappy” new windows installed by an experienced contractor may be the answer!

If you are considering having new windows installed on your home or commercial property, do not hesitate to contact Double J Siding & Windows in Amarillo, Texas, today! We can give you a free consultation and a free, no-obligation quote.

Siding and windows in amarillo texas

5 Tips for finding Replacement Windows

By Windows

Replacement windows amarillo
Perhaps, your old windows were damaged in a storm, are falling short of the mark on energy efficiency, or are just beginning to show their age? You’ve decided that it’s time for replacement windows but aren’t sure which ones to invest in yet or who to call on for installation.

Here are 5 key tips to take into account in your search for the best replacement windows for your home:

1. Look For Efficiency

In Amarillo, there are usually extreme daily temperature fluctuations, and seasonal differences can also be stark. Thus, your windows need to be able to consistently keep in the cool or the heat, as the situation demands. This calls for replacement windows with high energy ratings.

Specifically, look for low U-factors, which indicate relatively little heat loss through the window. A U-factor .15 is about the lowest, while some windows range as high as 1.20. Also, look for a low SHGC (solar heat gain coefficient), which indicates the window’s ability to block heat from entering your home – SHGC scores vary between 0 and 1.
Replacement windows amarillo

replacement windows amarillo texas

And of course, the Energy Star label will indicate an all-around energy efficient window.

2. Demand A Sturdy Build

It is possible, of course, to have a highly energy-efficient window that is, nonetheless, flimsy and easily damaged – not what you want! Welded and multi-chambered windows are particularly sturdy in build, and you need a strong material that is “smartly” fastened together.

Using the right contractor is also important when it comes to window sturdiness because it’s up to the installer to reinforce the sash, put the window in level and plumb, and use the proper types of screws, nails, and other fasteners.

3. Think About Impact Resistance

Everything’s bigger in Texas, including the storms! In the Amarillo area, impact-resistant windows make perfect sense.

UPVC (unplasticized PVC), for example, is much more impact-resistant than ordinary PVC. Wood can cope with impacts well, but wood requires periodic sanding and repainting. Choosing high impact-resistant vinyl with a woodgrain look is a low-maintenance alternative.

4. Consider Fade-resistant Colors

Years in the hot Texas sun may result in fading of certain windows’ finish. But there are fade-resistant colors, paints, and materials used on modern windows that can stand up to even the most extreme heat and sun over long periods of time without significant fading.

Fitting your window color and style into the rest of your home’s exterior doesn’t have to mean accepting fading. Ask a local window expert for help in choosing a fade-resistant window!

5. Use A Local, Reputable Contractor

No one likes wandering helplessly through the aisles of a big-box window store, bewildered by the abundance of choices but not feeling adequately helped by the attendee’s advice. What you really want is the advice of an expert who works with windows every day and who can deliver your new windows direct to your home and expertly install them!

In small towns like Amarillo, local reputation means everything – and it gets around fast by word of mouth. Look for a local contractor who can guide you through the window-selection process, remove and dispose of your old windows, custom-install your replacement windows, and keep it punctual and professional throughout the process.

In and around Amarillo, Texas, Double J Siding & Windows is your go-to window installation expert. Contact us today for answers to all your questions about modern windows or for a free, no-obligation quote. Feel free to discuss with us your replacement window needs, as we offer you a variety of effective, efficient solutions!