If you've been experiencing some problems with your windows, it's critical to know the right people to contact. While a quality contractor will know how to work with the vast majority of home window types, you'll need to speak directly with the producer of the windows to take advantage of any warranty that might exist. Whether you've recently had a window installation and something went wrong, or you need replacement windows after years of wear and tear, it's always helpful to know how to identify the manufacturer of your windows.
Here, we'll explore how to locate a window warranty label, read it, and determine the manufacturer, along with some additional helpful tips.
How to Find a Warranty Label
If a quality contractor lets you know that replacement windows are needed in your home, you don't just want to assume the expense rests on your shoulders. Instead, you should attempt to find the warranty label on your windows to see what kind of warranty you have. These labels are stuck onto your windows, typically in the form of stickers, and have all of the important information regarding warranty specifics.
The first place to check for a warranty label is on the glass itself. This is the easiest place to locate a warranty sticker although many manufacturers opt out of this method since it can ruin the aesthetic of a window. If placed on the glass, the sticker should be located in the bottom or upper corner to avoid becoming an eyesore.
If you cannot find a warranty label on the glass itself, it's most likely on the window's casing. This is the wooden material that borders and holds the glass in place. You might have to spend a few minutes meticulously looking at this casing as the stickers are sometimes transparent and difficult to find, which is partially why so many homeowners simply don't know about window warranties. If you still struggle to find the warranty label, any quality contractor will be more than happy to help you find it.
What Information Is On The Warranty Label
While it varies between companies, a window label typically has the manufacturer’s name, manufacture date, size of the window, and the serial number.
Other Types of Labels
Many windows also include a more conspicuous sticker from the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC). Many manufacturers have to include these labels in order to inform consumers about the energy performance rating of each window. When you understand these codes and labels, you’ll better understand what your window is offering you without having to ask a quality contractor. Let's take a look at some of the most common information you'll find on these labels to determine whether or not you may need replacement windows.
One of the most common performance rating indicators on a window label is the window's U-Factor. This is a measure of the window's ability to keep heat from coming through. As any quality contractor will tell you, this is a critical factor when determining whether you need replacement windows or not. When the U-Factor is lower, it insulates better. The range is between 0.02 and 1.20.
SOLAR HEAT GAIN COEFFICIENT
Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC) ranges from 0 to 1 and is typically position next to the U-Factor rating on your window. This measurement describes the ability of your window to minimize the gain of radiant heat that develops from exposure to sunlight. The lower the SHGC rating, the less solar heat that is transferred into your home.
Visible Transmittance (VT) also ranges from 0 to 1 but lets homeowners know the amount of visible light that can pass through. When the number is nearer to zero, this means that less light is allowed to get through. A quality contractor knows how important it is to balance your window’s VT and SHGC ratings in order to hinder the gain of solar heat while still keeping your windows transparent.
Next to your window's VT rating, you should see another number indicating Air Leakage. Although this rating is optional, most manufacturers will include it in your window label. This number lets you know the amount of heat loss and gain that takes place through cracks within the window's assembly. It's ideal to have a number closest to zero. As cracks can develop over time, this rating might not be accurate if your home's window installation took place years ago. It's best to speak with a quality contractor about whether or not you need replacement windows.
Identifying Your Types of Window Glass
One of the simplest ways to determine the type of window you have is to locate the manufacturer's name on the product. As mentioned before, many companies will place their name on the window itself or on the wood casing surrounding it. Still, some others use the hardware such as sash locks and handles to keep their name hidden from plain view to not take away from the aesthetics of the window. Keep in mind that if you already have replacement windows, not all parts of the windows will have necessarily been made by the same manufacturer. If you don't find any names or codes on the window, you might have windows that were produced by a company local to your area. Sometimes called "shop windows'', these replacement windows don't normally come with a brand identifier.
Speak With a Professional
If you’re struggling to locate or make sense of your window’s warranty label, feel free to contact Beaulieu Home Improvement. With years of experience serving the community’s home improvement needs, we have the expertise, equipment, and knowledge needed to help solve your home-related problems. Whether you need replacement windows or an entire windows installation for your new home, a quality contractor from our team can give you an accurate assessment.