Frequently Asked Questions
Common Questions About Impact Window Installation & Repair Service in Florida
How do I know when I need new windows?
- There are many factors that might influence your choice to replace existing windows.
- Your energy bills are high-and continue to increase
- Your home feels drafty in cold weather or too warm from heat penetrating your windows and doors in warmer weather
- You’re concerned about the safety of your windows and doors
- Your windows and doors are difficult or impossible to operate
- Your home’s existing windows and doors are faded, making your home look old and outdated
- The glass of your windows and doors is cracked, damaged or the operating hardware is failing
- You’re looking to add “curb appeal” to sell your home
- Your old windows and doors are in constant disrepair, requiring anything from puttying, painting, replacing parts, adjusting and waterproofing
- You want to decrease your home’s high insurance rate
Call us today for a free estimate at (561) 598-6295.
Why should I make the switch to impact windows?
One of the primary reasons that homeowners choose to replace their old windows with impact windows is for additional hurricane protection.
Residents of the state of Florida need to be prepared for when the next major hurricane touches down.
When you install new impact windows, you will have the peace of mind that comes from knowing that your window glass will not shatter or break in a storm.
Your impact windows will help to keep you and your loved ones safe.
Are impact windows only good for hurricanes?
You may also be wondering whether impact windows will only be able to protect your home in the event of a hurricane.
In actuality, impact windows can serve a variety of purposes around the home.
For example, your new windows will protect you from the dangers of a home intrusion.
A burglar will not be able to shatter your windows in order to gain entry to your home.
Why should I replace my windows?
- Window replacement is a sensible idea for home-improvement.
This is especially true if you choose well-made high-performance replacement windows.
They will save you money because your home heating and cooling bills will be lower-and your home will be much more comfortable to live in.
New windows will increase your home’s value and provide numerous benefits like enhanced levels of safety and security, greater beauty, low maintenance and ease of operation.
Call us today for a free estimate at (561) 598-6295.
What Are Small and Large Missile Tests?
Hurricane impact windows are a must-have feature for every homeowner and commercial building owner in storm-prone Florida.
But how can you be sure that the windows you’re having installed will really perform as they should?
Window installation experts in West Palm Beach, FL use products that have been impact-resistant certified.
This means the impact windows have passed rigorous testing protocols , including small and large missile tests.
Certified windows are tested to ensure they’ll hold up to small missiles, such as glass particles and roof gravel.
A hurricane will typically hurl these small missiles 30 feet or higher above their point of origin. Storm-proof windows must also withstand impacts from large missiles, which are typically propelled through the air at heights within 30 feet of ground level.
These include timbers, bricks, sheet metal, and roof tiles.
Current guidelines state that windows located at 30 feet or less above ground level must pass the large missile test.
Those that are located higher up must pass either the large missile or small missile test.
What Happens if Impact Glass Breaks?
Though high impact glass is exceptionally strong against impacts, it is not impervious to damage.
High impact glass is made in such a way that resists impacts, yet it will break in a safer way when it does encounter significant force.
Let’s take a closer look at what happens when high impact glass breaks versus when regular glass breaks.
When regular glass breaks, it is likelier to break into several large, sharp pieces.
During a storm, these pieces can fly around a house, causing damage and injuries.
If a home invader breaks regular glass, he can use these large pieces as weapons.
However, high impact glass is manufactured with a strong and flexible sheet of laminate between the impact glass panes.
This sheet of laminate helps control how the glass breaks.
While the high impact glass panes will resist flying debris, when they do break, the interior laminate sheet will cause the glass to splinter into tiny, rounded pieces.
These pieces will often stick to the laminate, maintaining a barrier against outside debris.
If any pieces do come loose, they are not as dangerous as large shards that break from regular glass.
When Choosing A Contractor
What qualifications must you have to install windows?
- Glass and glazing license for residential installations 3 floors and below
- State licensed general contractors license for taller structures
- The owner should request a copy of this license
- More information may be found here.
- TWG possess both with our owner as a our qualifier.
- Beware contractors that have outside qualifiers and beware of contractors performing work their license does not permit them to do!
Is a contractor required to provide proof of insurance?
- YES For the owners protection they should be issued a certificate of insurance with the owners name This will assure the insurance is paid to date and active. Any other questions then can be directed to the insurance company on the certificate.
- TWG carries workers compensation and general liability, certificates are available upon request.
- Beware contractors being under insured, who have expired insurance due to non payment, or insurance that does not cover the work they are contracting to perform.
Is it required the contractor I choose have the installers as employees?
- NO they can be subcontractors. However again check if this is the case that the persons actually performing the work be licensed for work being performed and have the appropriate insurance.
- It is suggested you receive proof of both prior to commencement of work.
- TWG installers are employees of the company. For us this allows us control of quality and scheduling of work being performed. Our name and reputation is the most valuable thing we have. To assure this integrity we see no better way than to have our company represented by employees directly employed by us.
- TWG carries workers compensation and general liability of $1,000,000.00 General Liability with a $ 2,000,000 General Aggregate Policy and a $3,000,000.00A:
Code Approved Products
When comparing products, how do I know that they have proper code approvals?
- All code approvals are not identical.
Code approvals can be for many different products and based on several different factors including property location and product use.
When comparing code approvals, make sure all products are specifically approved for impact by a reputable governing agency such as
How should I compare one hurricane window to another?
- This is a significant investment, so take your time to do your research prior to purchasing. Some important criteria to look for when making a decision are building code approvals, design pressure, glass criteria, installation techniques, and warranty.
Are Impact windows very expensive in comparison to non impact windows with shutter?
- The answer to this question might be surprising to you, but different studies have found that impact-resistant windows and doors can be less expensive than other hurricane protection alternatives.
A new study published by Ducker Research, a Bloomfield Hill, Minnesota-based research company, compared prices of aluminum double-hung windows and the results were as follows:
Non-impact window with storm panel: price $378
Impact-resistant laminated window: price $572
Non-impact window with storm shutters: price $717
Non-impact with electronic roll down shutters: price $1,437
- Based on the numbers above, the impact-resistant window can cost only $134 more than a non impact with a storm panel.
If the costs of pre-storm preparation are factored in over a busy hurricane season, then impact-resistant windows will prove more economical.
In addition, if we consider other important features provided by impact-resistant windows, such as passive protection, noise reduction, UV blocking and increased security, we find that having impact-resistant glass is a much more beneficial option.
Why should I install new Impact windows instead of just installing shutters?
- Above are the benefits of new windows however the biggest benefit is with just installing shutters you are still left with the old windows and doors. Most are deteriorated and not acting as originally designed.
How do I get a premium reduction in my home insurance when I have purchased hurricane protection products?
- Contact your insurance company for a Storm Mitigation Application.
This form must be completed by an approved professional.
- In order to obtain the discounts or credits, all of the house openings must be protected.
Homeowners with questions about mitigation should contact their insurance agents to make sure they are receiving proper credit for any steps taken to strengthen their home.
Citizen offers premium discounts to those policyholders who show proof of risk mitigation alternatives.
You can access additional information at the Citizens Property Insurance Corporation website or you can download the form, here.
Florida statute 627.0629 (regarding residential property insurance) requires all insurance companies, providing homeowner’s insurance to Florida residents, to offer some type of discount for dwellings equipped with an effective windstorm protective system. The first paragraph of the statute reads:
Effective June 1, 2002, a rate filing for residential property insurance must include actuarially reasonable discounts, credits, or other rate differentials, or appropriate reductions in deductibles, for properties on which fixtures or construction techniques demonstrated to reduce the amount of loss in a windstorm have been installed or implemented.
The fixtures or construction techniques shall include, but not be limited to, fixtures or construction techniques which enhance roof strength, roof covering performance, roof-to-wall strength, wall-to-floor-to-foundation strength, opening protection, and window, door, and skylight strength.
Credits, discounts, or other rate differentials for fixtures and construction techniques which meet the minimum requirements of the Florida Building Code must be included in the rate filing.
All insurance companies must make a rate filing which includes the credits, discounts, or other rate differentials by February 28, 2003.
By July 1, 2007, the office shall re-evaluate the discounts, credits, other rate differentials, and appropriate reductions in deductibles for fixtures and construction techniques that meet the minimum requirements of the Florida Building Code, based upon actual experience or any other loss relativity studies available to the office.
The office shall determine the discounts, credits, other rate differentials, and appropriate reductions in deductibles that reflect the full actuarial value of such revaluation, which may be used by insurers in rate filings.
Can impact windows reduce my energy bills?
With a new impact window installation, you will receive a terrific return on your investment.
Over the months, you will find that your new windows provide your home with increased insulation and protection from the elements.
As a result, your energy bills will lower after your window installation is complete.
With all of these great benefits, impact windows are a natural choice for your home.
What is the U-Factor?
- The U-Factor is a measure of how well the window or door keeps heat inside the structure or home.
What is the Solar Heat Gain Coefficient?
- The Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC) represents the amount of heat going into a house.
The lower the number, the less heat penetrates the house. When a home is primarily air conditioned, the SHGC value is the correct rating to inquire about.
Hurricane impact-resistant windows or doors with clear glass feature a SHGC of 0.72, while Bronze and Gray glass hold a 0.55 and 0.56 SHGC value, respectively.
Do impact-resistant windows and doors provide good Ultra-Violet protection?
- Ultra-Violet (UV) beams, a portion of the solar spectrum not visible to the human eye, causes fabric to fade over time.
When comparing UV readings, it is important to know that the lower the percentage, the more UV is being blocked.
For example, a 0% U-V value means 100% blocking.
Clear, gray and bronze impact-resistant windows and doors provide 100% protection, that is, 0% U-V penetration.
Do I need to have a building permit?
- Under no circumstance should you enter into an agreement to have products installed without a building permit being issued.
How does the permit process work?
- Upon signature of a contract a customer must sign a permit application, this application along with the product approvals will be sent to the city for approval.
City approval is based on the proper products being specified for the location of your property.
Upon city review and approval a permit will be issued for your property.
Prior to the installation, the permit must be posted on your job site, upon completion of the installation the municipality will be notified and a final inspection will take place.
How long does it take to get a permit?
- The turn-around time varies between municipalities. Once we submit the necessary paperwork, it takes us about 1 to 2 weeks to obtain a building permit approval.
At times, the process can take longer if permit reviewers have comments about a drastic change in style between the existing windows and the proposed new windows.
Each municipality has its own turn-around time and its specific workflow process.
Why do I need Engineering done for my project?
- YES. A licensed engineer will be employed by us on your behalf.
He will review the product we are providing for your home and certify it meets or exceeds the wind speed and impact resistance that is required by the municipality where you reside.
This document is required to be signed and sealed by a licensed engineer and submitted to the city for review along with all documentation of product approvals, drawings of field conditions.