HOW TO CHOOSE WHAT BRAND OF IMPACT WINDOW TO BUY
How to choose what brand of window to buy?
1. All window companies or dealers represent one or more manufacturers of impact hurricane windows and doors.
It is similar to buying a stereo at Best Buy, you go to the store and ask the clerk what you are looking for and base your decision on what information is given to you, price, quality and warranty etc…
Best Buy carries a lot of different brands and manufacturers and it is the same way window companies operate.
However, unlike big department stores not all window companies carry the same windows and some dealers only carry 1 or 2 manufacturers and push those brands, because it is the only ones they sell.
All windows manufacturers have to go through Miami-Dade testing and/or State of Testing testing so that their products are approved so that they meet the Florida Building Code to be used for hurricane protection.
What this means is that a product can be Miami-Dade or Florida approved and meet code but not necessarily be the best fit for your building or project.
2. So how do you choose?
Do your home work in first hiring the right contractor meeting criteria above.
Also that the company has plenty of choices in different window brands, so that they cater to your needs not theirs.
Any window company with prestige and a good reputation will have references, pictures of work and a showroom to compare products.
I always like to take my customers to existing jobs where my installers are working and show them the work in progress, work completed and the product we are proposing.
This also gives the potential customer to talk to the existing customer and get feedback about the work we are doing with them.
3. On a more technical level you should choose your impact hurricane windows and doors based on your needs for the product itself and the design pressure of the building.
impact Glass is two pieces of glass and impact insulated is three.
impact glass less energy efficient, impact insulated glass more energy efficient.
This is the protective film in between impact glass. PVB 5 Year Warranty (Good) – SGP 10 Year Warranty (BETTER)
Large Missile Glass (30′ or below)
Small Misile Glass (30′ or Above)
There are different glass thicknesses and the thicker the better, but also the heavier keep in mind in big panels that open The range form 5/16″ impact to 9/16″
impact Energy Efficiency Tints
This an energy efficient coating baked on to the glass.
Lowe Tint (Good) – SolarBand 60 (BETTER)
There are different Paint Finishes with different Warranty
Powder Coat 5 Year (Good), Kynar Finish 10 Year (BETTER)
There are Manufacturers that the Stainless Steel Assembly Screws and Hardware (wheels) etc..for your product are standard and others are extra, so ASK you should get it regardless.
There are different levels of screen quality and they are the most vulnerable so always go for the best. Also you don’t need screens in every window so choose the ones you mostly open and only buy for those.
Above are some of the choices you will encounter that you can use as a guide to compare when purchasing your new hurricane impact windows and doors, everyone uses different products and options so it will be very tricky to compare apples to apples, if you use the information above you will be able to make your process easier and get the most for your money.
My name is Calixto Perez and I am the owner of The Window Guys of Florida, a licensed glazier, and a general contractor.
If you have any questions, concerns or comments about the article please don’t hesitate to call me or email me.
I will be happy to guide you in your process and give you the service and attention you deserve minus the headaches at a fair price.