Has anybody seen...

For all those Replacement Window questions
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wayside
Posts: 36
Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2006 11:11 pm
Location: Suburbs west of Boston

Has anybody seen...

#1 Post by wayside » Fri Jan 13, 2006 12:16 pm

... the "Replacement Windows Made Easy!" do-it-yourself dvd that is sold on this site? Is it any good?

From researching on here, it seems that the quality of the install is as important if not more important than the actual window. Is doing a quality install yourself beyond the capabilities of a DIY-er with a decent set of skills?

I have this thought that I might be able to put new windows in myself, and then get someone to rewrap the aluminum on the outside (one window guy quoted me $80/window to rewrap).

If I can save the $100-150/window in installation, plus whatever they have to pay to dispose of the old ones, it adds up to a pretty good chunk of change.

Or maybe this is penny-wise, pound-foolish.

Opinions welcome.

eberry
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Location: Central US

#2 Post by eberry » Fri Jan 13, 2006 1:04 pm

I considered DIY as well. I decided not to, though, even though I've had success with other things around the house (I know my limits!).

You might consider getting someone experienced with windows (a capable handyman, etc.) to help you with the first two at least. Or if you have really big second floor windows, you might not have the right equipment, etc. Some windows will not have a warranty if not installed by a certified installer, but I guess you could rule those out, as needed.

Let us know if you order the video how it goes. I've also seen a free DIY window video series somewhere on the web (don't remember where now, sorry), and lots of them with just pictures.

Good luck!

HipKat
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#3 Post by HipKat » Sat Jan 14, 2006 11:11 pm

Ok, so you buy a window for say 400.00. Install it yourself. HOPE you did it right, void all warranties, and in a year, go buy another one because you may have screwed it up, and it's drafty, or leaking water, or not operating correctly, but now it cost 500.00. Or you get a reputable contractor to do it for 600, one time, and save the time, the 300.00 and the worry of wondering it's the way it's supposed to be, PLUS have a warrantied unit.

wayside
Posts: 36
Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2006 11:11 pm
Location: Suburbs west of Boston

#4 Post by wayside » Mon Jan 16, 2006 11:16 am

Thanks for your reply, HipKat.

As near as I can determine without actually asking, the company I like the most so far is charging about $200 for the install per window (based on what it would cost me to buy the window; I realize to contractor is probably making money on the window as well, but there is no way for me to capture that). This includes rewrapping the exterior in aluminum, which another company quoted me as an $80 up-charge.

So that leaves about $120 for the actual install.

$120 * 15 DH windows = $1800

So now I have to do a cost-benefit analysis.

Benefit:

I save $1800, a not inconsiderable chunk of money.

Costs:

I have to measure, order, and pick up the windows myself. I could mess up the measuring, measuring is pretty easy. I could damage one while picking it up and transporting it, although with care this risk can be minimized. Cost: low.

I could mess up the install. I've installed 6 replacement windows in my life, and numerous doors. I know how to make sure it is square, and I can use a caulking gun. Trim work is more of a challenge, but I think I can get the stops off without hacking things up too much. Taking down the storms and shutters and then reinstalling the shutters requires being up on a ladder. I think I could do ok as I am reasonably handy. Cost: medium.

I have one picture window which is too big for me to install myself. Cost will probably be much higher since it is only one window. Plus it might be hard to find someone to do only one window. Cost: high

I have to find another contractor to do the wrapping, as I have neither the skills nor tools to do that kind of metalwork. Plus, the cost will likely be higher per window since it is not part of a bigger job. Cost: high

I will have to dispose of the old windows myself. I think my town dump sticker will allow me to do this without extra charge. Cost: zero

Doing it myself could void the warranty. This could be a problem, although from everything I've read, it seems most window companies are not great about solving problems, and can generally avoid providing any service because "it was a bad install" or any of dozens exclusions in the warranty. Cost: probably low if I use a high-quality window to being with.

I will have to find the time to do it. No way could I bang this out in 1-2 days like the pros could. I figure I could do maybe 2 or 3 windows a day, which would happen only on the weekends. So not only do I lose three or four weekends, but the project drags on for quite a while. Plus all the time ordering/picking up the windows, lining up other contractors for the stuff I can't do, etc. Cost: zero money but a lot of time.

Did I miss anything?


Of all the potential negatives, the last is probably the biggest issue for me. For me, the cost savings don't outweigh the amount of time it would take me to do it myself.

So I am going to have my friendly neighborhood window pro do it.

HipKat
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#5 Post by HipKat » Mon Jan 16, 2006 11:37 pm

Thank you sir.
I must print this to show the DIY'ers I run into!!
Excellant post!

Guy
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#6 Post by Guy » Tue Jan 17, 2006 8:12 am

I've seen the guide from this site and found it was done very well. There is a lot of information for the DIY. It gives you some of the little things you don't really think about. It's well worth the investment!!

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