Front Doors Add Curb Appeal

Your front door is the first thing that people see when they arrive at your home. Don’t be afraid to let it make a statement.

People are starting to branch out from the traditional classic green, red, and black colors. If you’re trying to add curb appeal this season, look to shades of color that instantly welcome people to your home.

The front door is the welcoming point of your home, and therefore a striking door color-or one that complements the rest of the home-is essential. Look to the main or “field” color of your entire home for color ideas. If your home is a neutral color such as beige, brown, or gray, then an eye-catching color such as blue, red, yellow, orange, or even a purple eggplant color could be perfect. If the field color of your home is brick or flagstone that incorporates a lot of different colors, a more subdued charcoal gray, burnt umber, or hunter green could bring the color palette of your outdoor home together nicely.

The best part about a bold front door? You may be able to substitute repainting your entire exterior with striking elements like shutters or doors, cost-effectively transforming your home’s entire look.

Contact Quality Window & Door today for a consultation and see how a new exterior door can bring new curb appeal to your home.

   

10 Things to consider when replacing windows.

When replacing your windows, it helps to know your options, how the procedure is done, and if installation is best done by the experts. Below, window professionals break down the things you need to know before having your windows replaced at home:

Do not DIY!

Your window replacement is definitely not a project for practicing your DIY skills. While you may be fully skilled in handling and doing home improvement tasks, you never know what might happen. However, a professional does. So, it’s always best to consult an expert contractor.

Get the right fit.

If you choose Quality Window & Door to handle your window replacement, your windows are sure be in the right size. We don’t use “closet fit” premade windows. Instead, we measure them to know the precise dimensions of the replacement windows to 1/8th of an inch.

Look for functions.

In choosing the perfect window style for your home, ask the experts for suggestions. Will it stand even without installing storm windows? Which windows are easy to clean and maintain? To arrive at the best option, be sure to ask relevant questions.

Choose an energy-efficient window.

This will help you save on your energy bill over time as it improves the overall temperature and circulation in your home. Energy-efficient windows can help reduce your use of heating and cooling units.

Save some bucks with extra panes.

Double- and triple-paned windows give you substantial energy savings. The gasses between the panes (i.e., krypton and argon) greatly help with insulation.

Adhere to safety codes.

For windows in the bathroom, use tempered glass inside your shower or bath. Tempered glass breaks into dull pieces instead of hazardous crystal chards.

Ask help from a professional.

Here at Quality Window & Door, we offer a variety of windows from top brands. We take care of the fitting, prefinish, sealing, and more. Those are just some of the many benefits you can get if you hire a professional for your door and window replacements.

Use proper flashing.

Usually, the part where leaks occur in a window is on top. Ask your QWD to install a drip cap to avoid problems.

Check for manufacturer warranty.

Our manufacturers back the products with warranties to give our clients peace of mind.

A full frame replacement can come with new casing.

Here at Quality Window & Door, we offer a full frame installation with new interior casing. We can also use your existing interior casing if you wish. Check with us for the option that will be best for your home.

How to determine when you should replace your windows.

The windows in your home do more than give you a view of the outdoors. They form a barrier between you and the elements. Sometimes you can maintain this barrier with simple window maintenance and repairs. Other times replacement of one or more of your windows is the only option.

How do homeowners determine when they should replace their windows? You should always replace windows when they are not:

Energy Efficient
If you’re still using single pane windows, or you’ve experienced noticeable drafts or moisture near your windows, then your home isn’t as energy efficient as it should be and your windows are a part of the problem. Modern dual pane windows and triple pane windows are designed to provide the ultimate protection against the elements. In addition to protection against wind, temperature changes and moisture, they also provide UV protection.

Visibly Strong
If one or more of your windows has large cracks and missing pieces, extensive rotting or pests, you definitely need to go the replacement route before these issues result in costly wall or interior damage caused by moisture pooling and mold. You should also replace dual- or triple- pane windows that have mold on the seals or condensation in the form of fog or ice crystals between the panes, as these are indicators of seal failure. When seals fail, these types of windows are not only less energy efficient, but also extremely unhealthy because of mold growth.

Easy to Use
Your windows should never require a lot of work. Replace any window that sticks or freezes when opened or closed. If you have difficulty cleaning your windows, replace them with double hung windows that feature a tilt-in sash design. Also replace extremely high maintenance, painted windows that crack and peel with normal aging and require regular labor-intensive repainting. Another labor-intensive process is yearly storm window installation and removal. End the winter and summer window preparation cycle by replacing single pane windows with double- or triple- pane, all-season windows.

For more information about window replacement options, advice about your current home windows or answers to additional questions, contact our knowledgeable, experienced staff today!

Spring Cleaning Tips for Windows & Doors

Two of the crucial areas of your home to inspect thoroughly during spring are windows and doors. Well-kept windows and doors are vital for the home’s security, air conditioning, and even aesthetics. Winter can be tough on these structures, causing them to operate inefficiently or lose their aesthetic value. The experts at Quality Window & Door recommend the following spring home maintenance tips to ensure your home’s guard stays up!

  1. Inspect your windows and doors thoroughly

A lot can happen to your windows and doors during the past winter or summer seasons. An annual check-up is necessary during spring. Check for both minor and major problems so that you can know what needs fixing or replacement. Some of the common issues you may find with your structures include loose nuts and bolts, rotten wood, loose weatherstripping, chipped paint, squeaking hinges, clogged door tracks, and more.

  1. Clean your windows and doors

You can clean dirty window glass surfaces with water and a microfiber cloth. We recommend Norwex microfiber cleaning cloths.  When cleaning your exterior doors, consider their stain or paint finish. It is advisable that you request advice from a professional on the best cleaning products to use on doors.  Also, clean sliding door tracks and window casings to ensure the doors and windows close without making noises or jamming on the tracks. Also, clean sliding door tracks and window casings to ensure that the doors and windows close without making noises or jamming on the tracks.

  1. Repair or replace worn out hardware

Inspect all hardware parts of your windows and doors for tight-fitting or wear and tear. If bolts and nuts are loose, try to tighten them with a screwdriver. If they are worn out or damaged and need replacements, contact a professional to handle it for you. In addition, check all the moving parts on windows and doors to see if they are well lubricated. All gliding parts should be well lubricated at least once per year to reduce friction and prolong the life of hinges and bearings among others. Test the door and window locks to see if they are operating seamlessly. Your main exterior door should remain sturdy at all times for security reasons.

  1. Repair or replace the weatherstripping

The sealant or caulking on your windows or exterior doors is imperative in keeping these structures watertight and ensuring energy efficiency. Check the weatherstripping to see if it’s broken, loose, damaged or has gaps. If it’s destroyed and requires minor repairs, you can do buy a sealant and handle the repair on your own by following the manufacturer’s instructions or calling the experts at QWD for expert advice.

  1. Install window treatments and coverings

Consider installing window coverings such as blinds, shutters or draperies. They will not only help improve your home’s aesthetics but also boost your energy savings. They help reduce heat gain in the summer and heat loss in the winter.

Tuning up your home’s windows and doors this summer will go a long way in helping you identify and resolve issues early before they become expensive problems in the future. Contact the professionals at Quality Window & Door today for timely, affordable, and reliable inspections and repair for spring home care!

 

Takeaways:

The spring maintenance checklist for your windows and doors include:

  • Inspecting windows and doors thoroughly
  • Cleaning them and their components
  • Lubricating, repairing or replacing their hardware
  • Fixing or replacing weatherstripping
  • Installing window blinds, shutters or drapes

8 Benefits of New Windows & Doors.

You’ll have a hard time finding a project that brings as many benefits and stretches your investment dollar farther – than new windows and doors. Here are some of the benefits you’ll start enjoying from day one:

  1. Increased home value.New windows and doors can return homeowners. 71 to 78 percent of the project cost upon resale.
  2. Enhanced safety and security. Windows that don’t open easily or are painted shut are more than just an annoyance – they can be a safety hazard, for example when trying to escape during a fire. Also, doors with multi-point locks are harder to break through than those with only one lock.
  3. Reduced dust and allergens.Blinds and shades tucked between the panes of glass stay protected from dust, helping to reduce allergens in your home.
  4. Improved comfort. Energy-efficient, well-sealed windows and doors can help reduce cold drafts and hot spots in your home.
  5. Improved energy efficiency.New windows or doors can reduce wear on your furnace and air conditioner, helping you save money by improving your home’s energy efficiency.
  6. More peace and quiet. Insulating frames and triple-pane glass help reduce the noise from traffic, lawn mowers and barking dogs.
  7. An enhanced view.New windows or doors can dramatically improve the beauty of your home – inside and out.
  8. Less time spent cleaning. Today’s windows and doors are designed with convenient features that make it easier to clean places that used to be harder to reach

Modern Cabin with Floor-to-Ceiling Windows Floats in the Trees

A compact but impactful cabin with a Pacific Northwest flavor takes full advantage of stunning lake and forest views.

Nestled in the woods of Northeastern Minnesota, Jewel Box Cabin takes full advantage of the spectacular view of Caribou Lake. And while modest in terms of square footage, this modern cabin boasts tall ceilings, exposed beams, floor-to-ceiling windows and doors, and a thoughtful balance between public and private spaces that creates an impression of volume and breadth.

Sara Imhoff, owner and founder of Imprint Architecture and Design, worked closely on this project with homeowners Daniel and Elizabeth and their daughter Emily. Uninterested in a traditional north woods log cabin and with a fondness for the design styles commonly found in the Pacific Northwest, Imhoff’s clients wanted to push boundaries.

After touring Imhoff’s newly designed home on the AIA MN Homes By Architects tour, the homeowners were already familiar with her Seattle architectural roots. Designs for their new cabin were forefront. “The homeowners were looking for a sense of being in a space that faces outward, into the natural forest and setting – that was their goal. Those concepts are often found in the Pacific Northwest design style.” Imhoff added.

A door with a window

Description automatically generated

The aesthetic feel was important, but so was utility. Imhoff’s clients wanted a simple and uncomplicated interior that utilized every inch of the 900 square feet. On the main floor, the powder room, mechanical room, storage space and laundry are separated from the great room by one huge sliding plywood door. This replaces the need for multiple doors, which saves space and maintains material sightlines and a sense of openness. The bedrooms are located on the second floor, which provides some privacy from the great room located below. With multi-purpose space in mind, Imhoff added a flex space that serves as an office or sitting area but can also accommodate guests.

The roof structure, built with exposed architectural grade fir wood beams, handles heavy Minnesota snow loads. Plywood runs on the lower ceiling from the front porch into the interior hallway and through to the back porch. “The plywood we used was pine,” Imhoff says. “It has a light feel compared to the traditional half-round log-sided cabin. The homeowners have two dogs, one Samoyed and one Newfoundland. Plywood is a durable material that won’t be damaged when two big, active dogs brush up against it. Plywood also provides a bit of texture and contrast from what would normally be standard drywall.”

A picture containing sky, tree, grass, outdoor

Description automatically generated

A low maintenance exterior was a priority and was achieved with metal siding. “The only exterior cladding that requires regular maintenance is the cedar siding on the lower portion near the entry,” Imhoff explains. “The tight knot cedar was placed in that area strategically because it’s on the north side and covered from the elements, and it’s lower, so if it does need to be sanded or stained and refinished every six or so years, it’s much easier because it can be reached with a small ladder.”

A person standing in front of a building

Description automatically generated

The wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling windows maximize the lake and tree views and create a strong connection to the outdoor space and nature. Ample daylighting reduces the cabin’s electrical needs, and the large South-facing windows provide for passive solar heating in the winter.

When Imhoff designs a living space, she prefers to place windows on at least three sides to capture the best qualities of the light while considering sustainable lighting design. A combination of direct glaze and casement windows with a dark finish (Ebony to the exterior and Designer Black to the interior) helped bring the modern cabin aesthetic to life. “We chose to install Marvin Signature Ultimate windows because they are a streamlined product. The frame and mullion have a clean modern look to them with a thin profile allowing for maximum sightlines. Marvin products provide options for larger expanses of glass, which cost less than if we would have bought more mulled units.”

A view of a living room filled with furniture and a large window

Description automatically generated

The clients were delighted with their new forest retreat, saying when they’re sitting at their table and look up, they just see trees, almost like living in their own cozy treehouse. They initially thought that they might visit once a month during the summer, but now find themselves there all the time. Imhoff was also pleased with the results. “I think that architecturally, the cabin was the client’s way to express their creativity outside of their normal everyday routine. They said that I had checked off everything on their wish list, which was really gratifying.”

Like most successful projects, Imhoff agrees that the Jewel Box Cabin was a collaborative effort. “Zane Kanyer with Swensen Say Faget Structural Engineering, did a great job. Max Construction expertly executed the drawings and design and the support with the window design and layout that Marvin’s architectural project team provided was indispensable.”

Photography by James Kruger, Landmark Photography. Courtesy of Sara Imhoff, Imprint Architecture and Design.

Windows with Built in Blinds—Worth It or Not?

For all their convenience, window blinds can be kind of a pain sometimes. Who hasn’t pulled too hard on one side of the cord, ending up with a lopsided effect? Or maybe you’ve wondered how to clean dusty blinds without taking it slat by slat? Or worse, worried that an adventurous child or pet might get themselves tangled in the cord?

Thankfully, windows manufacturers have finally gotten wise to all these problems and designed windows with built-in blinds. In these windows, the blinds sit positioned between two panes of glass, rather than as a separate treatment over the frame. You operate the blinds using a remote control, or via a magnetic slider that runs along the side.

Still, having the blinds inside the glass changes the look and behavior of your window treatments and, potentially, the energy efficiency of your whole window. While some people find them much more convenient, they’re not for everyone. Here are some of the pros and cons so you can decide for yourself if integral blind window replacement is right for your home.

Benefits of Windows with Blinds Inside

The pros of windows with blinds built inside the glass are usually cleaner, safer for your home, and less frustrating than regular blinds. Here are some of the top reasons people have integral blind windows installed in their home.

  • Reduced maintenance: Manufacturers claim that having the blinds inside the glass virtually eliminates the need to dust or clean them (although in reality, some homeowners report that they have to clean them every couple of years). Well-sealed windows don’t accumulate dust and other allergens the way traditional window treatments do. That makes them a huge plus for many homeowners, since cleaning blinds thoroughly can be a tedious job.
  • Less risk of breakage: Having the blinds behind the glass protects them from damage and routine wear and tear. Blinds frequently become brittle and break over time, particularly if you have less expensive vinyl treatments installed on your windows. But even higher quality products aren’t safe from pets or young children who may bend or break the slats. Because of this, most homeowners find themselves replacing the blinds frequently, probably once every four years or so. No so with integral blinds. Although internal blinds certainly aren’t invulnerable to damage, they may potentially last as long as the windows themselves. Many even come with a ten or twenty-year warranty.
  • Safer for families with young children: The benefits of integral blinds extend beyond mere aesthetics, particularly if you have toddler-aged kids in the house. The cords on traditional blinds pose a risk of strangulation to young children—the watch group Parents for Window Blind Safety reports almost 600 cases of cord-related incidents in the past 30 years. Since they’re absolutely cordless, integral blinds skirt this risk altogether, offering parents huge peace of mind.
  • Convenience: Blinds can be difficult to operate. But the magnetized slider simplifies the whole process. Or, if you go with a motorized version, you can avoid the hassle of manual operation altogether. And integral blinds make a great choice for large glass doors, since they won’t swing and get in the way of the door’s movement.

Cons of Built in Window Blinds

The cons of having built in window blinds would be that they are costly to install, are not always the most stylish options for replacement windows, and can decrease your window’s energy efficiency rating. Here are a few more downfalls of built in window blinds.

  • Increased price: Purchasing a new window with built-in blinds obviously costs more than a set of blinds. And manufacturers typically classify windows with integral blinds as specialty products, meaning you’ll have to spend more than traditional models..
  • Limited design options: Speaking of selection, that’s another limitation you may face if you choose to go with internal blinds. While traditional blinds come in almost any material you can think of, from bamboo to aluminum to pine, your choices may become much more limited if you decide to purchase internal blinds. Also, due to the slider, you won’t find them in a variety of styles, either, such as Venetian or roller blinds.
  • Decreased energy efficiency: Manufacturers will usually insulate windows with argon, which they seal between double pane windows to slow drafts. However, they may forego this insulation in models that include integral blinds in order to maintain the integrity of the window treatments. And that can lower the window’s U-factor, the measure of its insulation. To avoid this issue, look for triple pane window models, ensuring that the window has a separate layer of insulated glass.

Overall, if you need new windows anyway and struggle with traditional window treatments, new window replacements might be a great solution. Integral blinds definitely make opening and closing the windows easier. And who couldn’t use a little less hassle in their life.

 

We make your replacement project easier

Replacing windows and doors can seem stressful—but it doesn’t have to be. Whether you’re unsure if you need to replace or wondering what to do next, we’re here to help you understand each step and make your replacement project a success.

Evaluate

Is it really time for a replacement?  Some signs, such as condensation or cosmetic damage, might not need replacement at all and are actually perfectly normal.  Others, like water stains and wood rot, need immediate replacement. Knowing the signs that require prompt attention versus those that can be easily fixed can help you evaluate whether and how soon a replacement is needed.

Need help deciding?

Select

We can help you navigate the process of selecting your replacement windows and doors. We’ll get started with a high-level look at basic choices like window/door styles and materials (wood, extruded aluminum or Ultrex fiberglass), and then we’ll guide you through design options – like wood stains, colors, hardware finishes, shades and screens.

Our Replacement Workbook details Marvin replacement products and options. Use the Workbook paired with our Replacement Guide to make the best choices for your replacement project. Download your copies below.

Order

You don’t have to go through the replacement process alone. Marvin has a variety of replacement specialists available to create your perfect replacement process, each of them are there to provide guidance, answer questions, prepare your quote, measure for your new windows and doors, and place your order. They will also help you get the installation process underway.

Local independent Marvin dealers

You can view replacement windows and doors in person at a local independent Marvin dealer. Your dealer may be a Marvin Authorized Installing Retailer (they handle all aspects of the replacement process), while others work with contractors for measuring, order, and installation. Our experts are always happy to partner with your contractor or to recommend a contractor if you don’t already have one.

Install

Depending on the size of your replacement project, there could be a lot to do before and on installation day. Ensuring that all decorative treatments are removed, turning off alarms, and confirming the date and time of the installation are just a few ways you can avoid extra hassle and ensure your replacement runs as smoothly as possible.

Enjoy

With your installation complete, it’s time to step back and enjoy the benefits of your replacement project. New windows and doors can save you as much as 15% on your energy bills while reducing wear and tear on heating and cooling systems.* New windows and doors could also lead to new possibilities—the remodel you’ve been waiting for, or more light in your favorite room. And our trusted warranty helps ensure you can enjoy your new windows and doors for years to come.

* “What You Need to Know About Energy-Efficient Windows: A Buyer’s Guide” HouseLogic.com

How to Clean Glass

  • Avoid cleaning glass while it is in direct sunlight, especially tinted and coated surfaces, to prevent streaking.
  • Start cleaning windows at the top of the building and continue to lower levels.
  • Soak the glass surface with clean water to loosen dirt and debris. Make sure no abrasive particles remain on the glass, then apply an approved cleaning solution with a non-abrasive cloth or other applicator.
  • Quickly remove the cleaning solution with a squeegee, taking care not to allow metal parts of cleaning equipment to touch the glass surface.
  • Avoid any cleaning product that has a strong chemical base or a high alcohol content, as chemical reactions could damage components.
  • Wipe any remaining traces of cleaning solution from glass and other parts of the window and frame. Windows, including their parts and frames, are susceptible to deterioration if left damp.
  • Some windows have an energy panel, often confused with a storm window. An energy panel is a removable, exterior glass panel and can be cleaned in the same way as other parts of the window.
  • Don’t use abrasive cleaning solutions or materials, don’t allow metal parts of cleaning equipment to touch the glass, and don’t use scrapers of any kind.
    Note: Glass scratched by a scraper is not covered under the Marvin warranty.

Annual Window and Door Maintenance Checklist

Regular maintenance will help keep your Marvin windows and doors operating smoothly. Use this checklist as an annual maintenance reminder.

  • Make sure the weatherstrip is still effective. If not, call your local Marvin dealer.
  • Examine the window’s interior and exterior finishes. Occasional repair to a damaged finish may be necessary.
  • Don’t let paints, stains and varnishes come in contact with the weatherstrip. Solvents can damage the weatherstrip’s performance.
  • Trim any old, loose caulking and seal any gaps with an appropriate, high quality caulk.
  • Occasionally, an excess of silicone sealant, called “squeeze-out,” appears around the edge of the glass. You can safely scrape off “squeeze-out” with a plastic putty knife without damaging the weather-tightness of your window or door.
  • Make sure all exposed hardware screws are tightened securely. Apply a dry lubricant to the windows’ gears to keep them operating smoothly.
  • Clean sand, dirt or dust from door and window hinges, sills and tracks.
  • Check energy panels and storm and screen combinations to make sure screws and turn buttons are securely fastened.
  • Check doors for smooth operation.
    Note: Wood doors require a stabilization period after installation, sometimes taking up to a year to adjust to humidity levels and other environmental factors.
  • Location plays an important role in how often you should clean and maintain the exterior of aluminum clad windows and doors. A coastal home exposed to harsh elements may need cleaning four or five times a year, while in a drier climate, once or twice a year may be sufficient.