By: Matthew Moretti from Renoviso
To read the first entry in our series, check out The Kick-Starter Guide to Window Replacement Projects
There’s nothing sweeter than the thrill of anticipation.
You just went through a rigorous screening process of local contractors for your new set of Harvey replacement windows. With great consideration, you chose colors, gridlines, window style, brand, and hardware. You closely compared pricing and reviews.
Your windows will be custom made, and all that’s left to do is countdown the days until your installation.
Hopefully, Renoviso is on your list of installers to talk to, but whether you work with us or any other of the great contractors who offer Harvey products, it’s helpful to know what to expect during the replacement window installation process.
1. Home prep
Your installer team will show up on-time and ready to roll. Here’s how to prepare:
- The installers will use drop cloths and padding to protect your belongings inside the home. You can also move furniture away from the windows to ensure their safety.
- Remove blocking items on the outside of your home, too. Trim hedges to provide easier access. Remove flower boxes from windows on both first and second stories.
- Turn off any security features you have on your windows. We don’t want ADT rushing over for a false alarm!
- Take down window treatments like curtains, blinds, and sheers.
- Before they begin, confirm again exactly which windows are being replaced.
2. Replacement Window Installation Process
The installation process of a replacement window is rather simple – more so than you might assume.
- The installers will cut the ropes in the sash of your old windows, if they’re present. Newer windows don’t have ropes, so this may not be necessary. The interior window stops (small pieces of trim that run along the jamb) are removed, and the old windows are carefully removed from the opening and hauled away.
- Next, the new window will be placed in the opening and checked for fit. The crew will make sure your new windows are completely level by using a thin strip of material called a shim and loosely fastening the window within the opening so they can test operation. Ensuring they are plumb is crucial; only level, plumb windows will operate correctly and smoothly.
- Finally, the windows will be securely fastened, and stops will be reinstalled to their original positions and caulked. Last, your exterior trim will be installed to protect the window from moisture and to provide a tight seal.
- Depending on how many windows are being installed, the crew could be done in half a day! Most jobs will be completed in one day or less. Now THAT’s fast.
These steps are for replacement window installation, not for a full renovation. Some contractors refer to that as tear-out or new construction installation, and it requires more steps.
3. Additional Labor
During the consultation and measurement phase, your installer may have noticed additional labor needs for your window replacement. This could include fixing rot, modifying window stops, and cutting mull posts.
If your contractor doesn’t communicate additional labor upfront before you commit, that’s a red flag.
The team performs these tasks either before, or after, the new window installation. Most often, these necessary adjustments will be identified before installation, though sometimes the old window needs to be removed to notice the damage.
4. Walk Through & Inspection
You should always perform a thorough walk through and inspection of the windows once they’re installed. You should only sign off on the job if you feel completely satisfied, with no remaining questions or concerns. If you’re working with the right installer, they’ll swiftly fix any issues. They will also sweep the work area and remove debris and extra material. The best contractors will leave your home cleaner than it was before they came.
A contractor focused on customer service will follow up a few days later to make sure you’re happy with the product. Before purchasing, be sure to understand exactly what warranties are included with the windows. In the unlikely event of a functional issue, you may be able to fix or replace the window at no cost.
Harvey provides industry leading warranties that guarantee your windows remain free of material defects. In addition to Harvey’s standard warranty, which covers your window parts and mechanisms for life, some Elite Dealers (like Renoviso) provide lifetime glass coverage from defects and accidental glass breakage.
For things that aren’t covered by warranty or installer, Harvey provides a dedicated field service department to assist with product issues.
The best part? We all want the same result
Your goal is to receive a set of flawless, custom-built Harvey windows that look and operate as expected. A good contractor’s goal is to make the window installation process as easy, painless, and quick as possible.
Don’t try to install windows yourself! Any small error in installation can lead to major functional issues. Trust the pros!