Winter weather can wreak havoc on your home. And in the Twin Cities, it’s never the cold that’s the problem — it’s the wind chill and the heavy snow that damage your home’s exterior. This winter wear and tear can lead to costly repairs or replacements in the spring. 

You might experience broken siding panels due to high winds, or condensation between your window panes. Fortunately, there’s plenty of time to prepare your home Minnesota home for the colder months. Window Nation home improvement experts are here to share their best tips for preparing your home for harsh winter weather.

Seal Cracks and Air Leaks

Keep the cold winter air outside by repairing any cracks or drafts you notice in your home. Take a look at your windows and doors and inspect any areas that feel like they may be letting in air from outside, then seal the areas with caulk or weatherstripping.

Some Twin City homeowners even put plastic wrap around their windows as a temporary solution while they make a plan to replace their windows. That way, they can keep the harsh cold from being too costly. 

Upgrade Your Windows

While caulk might serve as a quick fix, it’s important to note that caulk does not adhere well in cold temperatures. For a long-term solution, it’s smarter to replace your windows and doors with energy-efficient upgrades. 

Energy loss from older windows can be responsible for 40% of your annual heating and cooling costs. Most builder-grade windows are single pane, the least energy-efficient windows on the market. To put that into context, according to ENERGY STAR, if you replace your older single-pane windows with more energy-efficient models in an average home, you could save between $101 and $583 per year on your energy bill

If your windows look old enough to be featured in the Guthrie Theater, it’s time for a replacement. Consider replacing your windows with double or triple pane windows for an energy efficiency boost you’ll enjoy year-round. Our windows will help your HVAC system work smarter, not harder, to keep your energy bills low during the blistering cold of winter in the Twin Cities.

Upgrade Your Siding

Cold temperatures, high winds, and ice wreak havoc on your home’s exterior. So unless you’re planning on playing ice hockey along the walls, inspect your siding for any cracked panels or discoloration. 

If you notice any areas of concern, it might be time to upgrade your siding. Vinyl siding from Window Nation is built with premium energy efficiency features to keep your home comfortable all winter long. Our siding is also durable, built to withstand the harshest of weather conditions. 

Purchase a Generator

There’s nothing worse than losing power during a major winter storm. Inclement weather could keep Xcel Energy from restoring power for hours, or even days.

Keep your home protected from power outages by purchasing a generator to serve as a backup power source. You might need to do some research—it’s not something you want to casually pick up at the Mall of America. But generators are particularly important if you or someone you live with is part of a vulnerable population, or if you live in a cold climate like the Twin Cities where the risk of hypothermia is increased.

Want to Winterize Your Home?

When you’re ready to start your home improvement project, schedule an estimate with one of our exterior design consultants. Our team will discuss your project with you and go over your options so you can find the best windows for your Twin Cities home. Schedule your in-home estimate today to save money and keep your home comfortable throughout the year.

One of the biggest selling points of brand-new windows? Energy efficiency.

You’ve probably heard the claims, “Lower your monthly energy bills and help Mother Earth!” or, “Windows have an unbeatable return on investment!”

Let’s look at the hard science for a minute here. Your windows act as shields for your home. In the winter they keep the cold out, and in the summer, they keep the cold in. But how do they do it? And why might one type of window be better at regulating your indoor temperature than another?

Let’s talk about heat transfer.

You may have fallen asleep in science class the day thermodynamics came up, but we all know that our hot coffee is eventually going to drop to room temperature. This phenomenon is called heat transfer.

A well-made window acts like a thermos. It keeps the heat exactly where it’s supposed to be by cutting down on heat transfer from the outside to the inside of your home.

Windows have two important parts— the glass and the frame. Since the glass takes up most of the space, it has a big role to play in heat transfer.

Scientists have been hard at work on window glass. A simple single-pane glass window allows 85%-90% of the heat to pass through it in either direction. If we double up on the glass, only 67%-73% of heat passes through. Triple it up and you’re down to 57-65%. Beyond that, however, the window gets too heavy to be manageable. Triple-pane glass is the most that most companies will offer. So then how to reduce heat transfer even more?

The glass itself can be engineered to be more reflective. Glass with a small amount of tin or silver oxide baked in will keep your home more comfortable since metal reflects solar energy. At the high end, if you get triple silver Low-E reflective coating, you only let 2-5% of the heat pass through. That is truly impressive.

But glass isn’t the only factor.

Your frame and sash material matter.

How about the material that holds the glass in place?

If you have the choice between sitting on a wooden bench or a metal bench on a hot day, the answer is clear. Metal conducts more heat, making the wooden bench a safer option. Likewise, metal makes for a poor choice for window sash material. Wood window frames are about twelve times more energy-efficient.

But wood frames still aren’t the best material.

That superlative goes to vinyl. Insulated vinyl framing is about four times more efficient than wood. The weather-stripping can be built right into the vinyl, which means there’s no need to use adhesives that can break down over time.

The most energy-efficient windows use insulated vinyl frame material and glass with silver oxide-based low emissivity coatings to cut down on heat transfer.

Be an Energy Star.

The good news is that someone has already done the leg work on energy efficiency.

Energy Star is a program run by the EPA and the U.S. Department of Energy that researches energy efficiency. They run independent trials on dishwashers, refrigerators, and yes, windows. In 2019 alone, ENERGY STAR worked to help Americans save almost $39 billion dollars in energy costs.

If you check out their website, they’ll give you suggestions for windows for your region, and let you know how many panes of glass you’ll need to best insulate your home in your climate.

Don’t let your windows leak.

Remember that thermos keeping your coffee hot? Even the best thermos in the world won’t do you any good if the lid is loose. If you throw that thermos in a backpack, you shouldn’t be surprised when you open it up and there’s coffee everywhere.

In the same vein, the best window in the world can still leak without the right installation. So, partnering with a pro for installation is a must. Every window installation team at Window Nation is factory-trained. We specialize in window replacement, and we’ve installed over one million windows since 2006.

We’ll ensure the most energy-efficient windows are the windows proudly hanging in your home. Get a free quote from Window Nation today and see how much of a difference the right installation makes.

 

When it comes to home renovation, not all projects are created equal. Pink and lime green bedroom walls in a chevron pattern? No thanks. A new outdoor pool in Minnesota? Probably not smart. The financially-savvy homeowner, when considering remodels or renovations, is probably asking a few pointed questions:

  • Will this renovation increase my home’s resale value?
  • Will this renovation save me money in the short term?
  • Will this renovation improve my quality of life?

If the answer to all three is a resounding yes, then you’ve probably hit upon the home renovation jackpot.

So how does home window replacement measure up? With more than a dozen things you could invest in around the house, is it a good financial move to replace your home windows?

 

When replacing windows, expect a handsome return on your investment.

According to Architectural Digest, that swoon-worthy magazine of celebrity house tours, replacing older windows with new ones (even if they’re not top of the line), can actually make you money. According to their calculations, you’ll get $1.15 back for every dollar you invest in this type of project.

And leading trade publication Remodeling Magazine agrees that home window replacement is one of the top return-on-investment projects in its 2021 trend report.

Window replacement follows the multi-year trend of exterior improvement projects. These curb appeal updates make the whole block look better, and raise the value of your home for potential buyers.

Replacing your windows gives your home a makeover that the whole neighborhood will notice. You’ll be sure to get a higher selling price if you decide to put your home on the market. New windows announce to the world that your home is handsome and well-maintained.

 

New windows will save you money every month.

Planning to stay put for a while? When you invest in home window replacement, you’ll see immense benefits in the short and long term. Think about the bills you get every month for your home energy usage. What if there was a coupon that gave you a discount every month?

Installing new windows can give you that price break on heating and cooling costs. Old windows are often drafty or leaky, meaning your heating efforts in the winter and cooling efforts in the summer are less effective. New windows come with tight seals, and you can even invest further by upgrading to double or triple-paned glass.

By making your home more energy-efficient, you’ll save money on utility bills every month and make your home more comfortable throughout the seasons. Home window replacement is good for the family budget and good for the environment.

 

Replacing old windows can transform your house into a home.

Can you really put a price on loving your home? If you’re stuck with leaky, unappealing single-pane windows from decades ago, window replacement will not only save you money — it can transform your living space.

Lacking morning light in your kitchen or a view from your living room? Consider switching from double-hung windows to a casement window for uninterrupted landscapes. How about that dark corner of the bedroom? Once you install a new specialty window, all you’ll need is a comfy chair and you have a new reading nook.

Not only that, but window replacement lets you bring your own style and personality to your space. Whether vast, open-concept picture-frame windows, or cute farmhouse-style crisscrossing white frames, replacing your windows makes your home yours.

We know there are always plenty of home renovation projects you could take on. But home window replacement checks all the boxes — it’s a great way to increase your home’s future selling price, it will lower your monthly home energy bills, and it can add life and pizzazz to your day-to-day enjoyment of your home.

 

You’ve got options when it comes to how your windows open and what material they are made of. Window Nation has a great online tool that allows you to upload pictures of your home and visualize this upgrade for yourself. The Home Visualizer Tool is a great way to daydream your way into a profitable and picturesque home renovation.

Request a free Window Nation quote today, and see for yourself how financially savvy home window replacement truly is.

If you’ve made the smart move to replace your windows, you’re already well aware that you’ll get a boost to your curb appeal while increasing the value and functionality of your home. After all, window replacement has one of the highest returns on investment of any home improvement project.

But which type of window is best for your purposes? If you’re looking to save money on heating and cooling bills, your window choice is important: according to the US Department of Energy, 25%-30% of home energy usage is lost through windows. While replacing your old single-pane windows will assuredly knock that number lower, some windows are more efficient than others.

Enter our two competitors: Double-hung windows and casement windows. In a head-to-head competition, which is going to save you the most money every month on your home heating and cooling costs?

 

Round One: Ventilation

You know that glorious moment between seasons when it’s not quite time for A/C and you don’t really need to turn on the heat? The longer that season lasts, the better. It may sound simple, but opening a window is one of the most energy-efficient choices you can make. Even the CDC recommends airing out your home regularly.

And when it comes to ventilation, our winner is…casement windows. When you turn the crank to open your casement window, it swings outward, allowing you to funnel the breezes right into your home. If you have a room with multiple casement windows, you can get an excellent cross-ventilation effect.

That said, it’s a close competition. If your room features double-hung windows you can still get fresh air, especially if your home has ceiling fans. Opening a double-hung window from the top and turning on a fan is an excellent way to freshen your home’s air.

Round Two: Seals

When it comes to closing up nice and tight, casement windows take the prize for energy efficiency. Casement windows seal on all four sides tightly against their frame. When they are cranked shut, you can feel the airtight seal locking into place. It’s also easier to close and seal them — a simple crank vs. hoisting your windows open and closed.

While you may not feel that extra little tightening when you close a double-hung window, you can still maximize your energy efficiency by locking your windows. Make sure your sashes are kept free of dirt and debris to get the best seal possible.

Round Three: Glass

When looking at the energy efficiency of your new windows, don’t forget to factor in the glass. Choosing to invest in double- or triple-paned glass will lower your monthly energy bills and keep your family comfortable no matter what the weather.

In our window face-off battle, this round is a draw. Both of our competitors come with the option for double or triple-pane glass. If you combine multiple panes with a Low-E coating, you are looking at a very savvy long-term investment in your home’s energy efficiency.

Round Four: Wild Card

Though you may care about energy efficiency, that’s not the only reason to pick one window over another. A casement window or double-hung window may just make more sense in one room, whether because of aesthetics or ease of use.

For example, a double-hung window installed over the kitchen sink may be difficult to open and close in a bent-over position. On the other hand, since casement windows open outwards, they may not be the best choice if they open onto a deck or walkway and obstruct the space.

What about cleaning? Both styles of windows have features that make them easy to clean, and the maintenance is minimal.

And the winner is…

The winner of the energy efficiency face-off (drumroll, please) is casement windows. Their ability to help you ventilate your home on mild days, and the tight seal they provide on the days you can’t, make them a clear winner.

But it’s important to note that any home window replacement project is going to increase your energy efficiency. A brand-new double-hung window is sure to be more efficient than a worn-out older model. You’ll walk away a winner no matter which way you choose.

If you are ready to daydream in a bit more detail, take a look at our Home Improvement Visualizer tool. You can upload pictures of your home and see for yourself which options work best.

Request a free Window Nation quote today, and we’ll help you find the best combination of windows that work for your home.

Think of that first lovely spring day. The birds are singing, the trees are budding, and we are all suddenly, inexplicably happy. It’s no surprise that the arrival of sunny spring weather often feels like turning a corner: the benefits of natural light are well documented. Sunlight helps ward off depression, alleviates anxiety, boosts vitamin D production, and improves sleep. We blossom in the sunlight. 

Natural light has other benefits as well. Homes that are suffused with a light feel more spacious and relaxing. Natural light deters mold and mildew growth and can reduce utility spending on electricity and heating. Homes with better lighting also tend to have better resale value.

So whether you’re getting ready to embrace the changing season, or hoping to spruce up your home to put on the market, here are our top eight tips for how to let more natural light into your home.

#8 Pick a light color palette 

A light color palette reflects 80–90% of natural light. Take a look at your ceilings — repainting this forgotten surface can make your space feel taller and brighter. Even the materials around your windows can help bounce light. Window Nation offers multiple options for sash materials on all of our windows. A brightly colored window sash welcomes in the light. 

#7 Deep clean your windows

Bust out the vinegar and newspaper — it’s time to give those windows a clean. You’ll be amazed to see the difference made when you clean your windows. Be sure to put this task on the regular rotation. While you’re there, make sure all your windows are in working order. 

#6 Decorate with reflective materials

When it’s time to decorate, bring out the bling. Strategically placed mirrors can double up the light in the room, tricking the eye and livening up the home. For kitchens, consider white or chrome appliances instead of black. A few well-placed reflective choices can significantly change the feel of your space. 

#5 Swap in lighter window treatments

Get rid of those heavy brocades and dense fabrics. Easy, breezy, and beautiful is the way to go with window treatments. Consider lightly colored linens, loosely woven sheers, or classic lace. As a bonus, lighter fabrics can cut down on the dust in your home — something to consider if you’re dealing with allergies. 

#4 Consider a sliding glass door

Why not turn that window into a door? Installing glass doors will not only bring more light into your space. It’ll encourage everyone to get outside. Enjoy your backyard, take your shoes off and put your feet in the grass. A sliding glass door (or a set of French doors) will help your family make the most of your home. You’ll get more light into the house, and you may even start hosting the neighborhood cookout. 

#3 Trim back shrubs and trees 

Give the shrubs and trees around your windows a haircut. Keeping your greenery trimmed will not only let in light but can also help cut down on the moisture in your home and keep your home’s foundation in good shape. If those trees and bushes get too big, they’ll be expensive to trim later and could damage your home in a storm. Overgrown landscaping could even pose a security risk! Trim them back, and let the sunshine in. 

#2 Buy the correct light bulbs

On cloudy days when natural sunshine isn’t available, turn on a light that mimics the effect of natural light. Be sure to seek out sources that feature the full spectrum of light. LED bulbs are energy-efficient and can give a warm glow. Even today’s compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) are kinder to our eyes than the old blinking fluorescent tubes. Survey your lightbulbs and consider installing dimmers or smart bulbs for maximum control over your ambiance.

#1 Install larger windows 

The best way to flood your home with light is by installing new, larger replacement windows. New windows will increase your home’s curb appeal and make your interior feel spacious and relaxing. Plus, you can quickly reduce your home’s carbon footprint and lower your monthly energy bills by installing energy-efficient windows. A new bay window, a picture window, or even a specialty size can change your day-to-day experience in your home. 

Give Window Nation a call to get a free quote and explore new ways to increase your home value, save on utility bills, and transform your house into a refreshing, sunny oasis.

Does your utility company send you a monthly breakdown of your energy consumption? If you’ve noticed that you’re slowly starting to pay a little more each month, it’s natural to wonder why – and if there’s anything you can do about it.
One of the most common — and insidious — causes of growing energy bills are window leaks. Beyond wasting energy, leaks can also cause mold and mildew to flourish, which may worsen asthma and lead to other health issues. If that leak gets into the walls, your wooden supports can start to rot. Trace this leak a few steps further, and you may even experience foundation problems.   In fact, leaks in your home are such a serious concern that the EPA has its eyes on the issue! You can wait and celebrate their National Fix A Leak Week this March 14-20, but if you suspect you have a leak in your home, it’s time to take action now. So what are your first steps?
 

Do your detective work.

It starts with a hunch—you walk past a certain window and get a chill up your spine. Are you feeling a draft? It’s time to inspect your windows for leaks.  There are a few strategies here. The simplest is to conduct a thorough examination of your windows. Are they difficult to close completely? If they jiggle or need extra muscle to close, then you may have a sash that is leaking. Are you seeing any small gaps around the frame? Are there cracks in the glass? Take a look. If your visual inspection is negative, then it’s on to the candle test. Seal up your home as tightly as you can — close and lock all your windows and doors, close your vents and dampers and turn off any exhaust fans. Next, light a small candle and take a walk around. If there are leaks or drafts, the candle flame will blow to one side and show you. Another tell-tale sign is watching your curtain sheers. If you see movement even when the windows are closed, your house isn’t haunted — it’s leaking.  You can make an inspection the next time it rains. Do the seams of your windows feel damp after a storm? Your window has small leaks. 

How did the leak get there? 

If this were a detective case, then the next stage would be finding a motive. Why are your windows leaking? How did this happen?  Over time, windows wear out. If you have wooden windows, moisture may have caused them to warp. Sealing components play an important part in a window’s function, and those can break down over time. Or, it could simply be that your windows weren’t installed correctly in the first place. A good window should last a long time, protect you from the elements, and save you money on your home energy bills. But a window that’s leaking isn’t doing its job anymore.     

It’s time to take action.

If you suspect that your window sealing components are the cause of your leak, recaulking and weather stripping might be the way to go. This DIY route may not be for beginners, but depending on your skill level, it can buy you a little more time. You can find instructional videos and articles on the internet. Research resealing thoroughly before diving in.  For real peace of mind, don’t go with the band-aid solution. Call the pros. Window Nation is a national leader in home window installation. When you go with certified and experienced window experts, you can trust that your windows will hold up over time and keep your home comfortable no matter the weather. It’s time to plug up those leaks, save money on your energy bills, and avoid future structural problems. Schedule a quick and easy virtual consultation, or contact us for a free in-home consultation and estimate today.

Fall is the perfect time to tackle the home improvement project you’ve been putting off. The temperatures are mild, and the weather is ideal for spending time outdoors. You might have an idea of the home improvement project you’d like to start – maybe your garden is overgrown, or you need to repair the shingles on your roof before winter arrives. However, the decision might not be as easy for some homeowners. You might be looking to increase your home’s energy efficiency or give your home a curb appeal boost, but you don’t know where to start. If you need a little more inspiration, our home improvement experts shared their recommendations for Fall home improvement projects.

Window Replacement

Fall is one of the best times of year to replace your windows. You won’t have to worry about your exterior design consultant getting stuck in the snow on the way to your house, and your installation won’t get delayed due to inclement weather. Mild temperatures are also ideal for window installation – the caulk that seals your windows adheres best in cooler temperatures.

Replacement windows will give your home an energy efficiency boost just in time for winter – our windows are built with premium energy efficiency features to eliminate drafts and keep your home comfortable no matter the season. You might even see savings on your energy bills just in time for the holiday shopping season! When you choose replacement windows from Window Nation, you’ll also enjoy a curb appeal boost – all our windows are custom-made to meet your home’s needs. Choose from a variety of style and color options to find the perfect fit for your home.

Furnace Upgrades

The last thing you’ll want during the biggest snowstorm of the year is for your furnace to go out. Before the temperatures drop, consider contacting a HVAC maintenance professional to inspect your furnace. They can perform routine maintenance and make repairs if necessary. However, if your furnace is more than 10 years old, they might recommend upgrading it with a modern, more energy efficient HVAC system. Though the cost might seem steep, you’ll enjoy the comfort of knowing you won’t have to make any upgrades or repairs for years to come. When choosing a new furnace, consider purchasing an Energy Star certified system – you could save money on your energy bills.

Siding Replacement

Siding is one of the most overlooked parts of your home, but it’s important to keep it well maintained. If your siding is looking worse-for-wear, you might consider replacing it with modern vinyl siding from Window Nation. Our siding is available in a variety of colors, giving your home a much-needed curb appeal boost in time for the holidays. You won’t have to worry about your siding cracking or fading due to inclement weather – our siding is durable, built to withstand the harshest weather conditions. Vinyl siding will also improve your home’s insulation, keeping your home comfortable all winter long.

Upgrade Insulation

Your home should feel cozy and comfortable in the Fall, not drafty and chilly. Improve your home’s comfort this Fall by upgrading your home’s insulation. We recommend hiring an expert to conduct a home energy audit to determine the places where you’re losing the most energy. Your attic is one of the biggest culprits due to poor insulation – we recommend upgrading your home’s insulation with fiberglass or foam insulation to keep the chilly air outside. It’s also important to seal any cracks you might find, particularly around your windows and doors, to eliminate drafts and keep your home comfortable.

Door Replacement

Nearly one-third of residential heating and cooling costs are attributed to energy loss through windows and doors. Why continue to waste money on your energy bills month over month? Consider upgrading your doors to replacement doors from Window Nation. We offer entry doors, French doors, and sliding doors, each custom-made to fit your home’s needs. Our doors are available in fiberglass and steel options, so you can choose the best style for your home. You’ll enjoy a curb appeal boost and added security – all Window Nation doors come standard with a multi-point locking system to make your home more secure.

Want to Learn More About our Windows?

When you’re ready to start your home improvement project, schedule an estimate with one of our exterior design consultants. Our team will discuss your project with you and go over your options so you can find the best windows, doors, and siding for your home. You’ll then receive a quote good for up to six months. Schedule your in-home estimate today at WindowNation.com.

Valentine’s Day used to mean a fancy date night out — but with COVID-19 still lingering, you may not feel comfortable dining at a busy restaurant. If you’re planning on spending Valentine’s Day at home this year, surprise your sweetie by freshening up your indoor space!  

 Here are five fun ways to make this Valentine’s Day at home special. 

 1.  Liven up the atmosphere with some flowers.

 Nothing screams Valentine’s Day more than a bouquet of flowers, so if you’re looking to add a touch of romance to your home, flowers are a great way to start. 

 Try setting a vase of roses out on your dinner table, or as a centerpiece on your mantle — and if you’re feeling romantic, scatter a trail of rose petals to set the mood.  

 Don’t be afraid to get creative, either! There are plenty of flowers that will refresh your living space this Valentine’s Day. For example, lilacs can be a great subtle touch for your kitchen, or you can give your loved one an orchid to spruce up your living room year-round. 

 2. Hang your romantic photos.

 Whether it just wasn’t the right time, or you’re still searching for the perfect frame, this is the perfect occasion to put up those romantic photos. 

 Highlight your favorite moments from your vacation or re-live a romantic night out with picture frames that draw your attention (without taking too much focus away from your memories). Give the spotlight to your favorite pictures with fun accent colors perfect for Valentine’s Day.  

 3.  Switch up your decor with something vibrant

 If you’ve been looking at the same color scheme in your home since Christmas, it might be time to do some redecorating. Try a bold color palette to make this Valentine’s Day memorable. 

 Or, if you’ve been waiting for the perfect moment to show off your favorite decor, now’s the time. Dust off your nice china and set out the candles. Or, if you’ve been looking for a reason to buy those heart-themed towels and comforters you found — go all out! 

 4.  Make some new additions to your living space

Don’t like how your favorite chair’s stuck in the corner? Prefer to move your sectional closer to your coffee table? Here’s your chance to do some re-arranging! Try something new and exciting. You could even position your loveseat closer to the fireplace to have a cozy night in. 

 Or, if something’s still missing, consider purchasing a completely new set of furniture! Nothing says “I’m committed” as a serious investment in your interior decorating. Just discuss it with your loved one first — this probably isn’t a gift you would buy on a whim. 

 5.  Have you considered remodeling? How about replacing your windows?

Don’t let your home miss out on the love this season. Old, outdated windows can put a chilly damper on a romantic evening, so if you’ve been putting off replacing your windows, now’s the time to make a change. 

 Bay windows provide the perfect cozy space to eat those leftover chocolates and watch the snowfall outside. Or, if you’re sitting by the fire and pesky drafts are making it difficult to get comfortable, an energy-efficient window replacement could be your best option. 

When you’re ready, give Window Nation a call. Our experienced technicians can help you find options and styles that fit your preferences and budget. Request a quote today, and discover how much replacement windows from Window Nation can liven up your home this Valentine’s Day. 

Fall is the perfect time to tackle the home improvement project you’ve been putting off. The temperatures are mild, and the weather is ideal for spending time outdoors. You might have an idea of the home improvement project you’d like to start – maybe your garden is overgrown, or you need to repair the shingles on your roof before winter arrives. However, the decision might not be as easy for some homeowners. You might be looking to increase your home’s energy efficiency or give your home a curb appeal boost, but you don’t know where to start. If you need a little more inspiration, our home improvement experts shared their recommendations for Fall home improvement projects.

Window Replacement

Fall is one of the best times of year to replace your windows. You won’t have to worry about your exterior design consultant getting stuck in the snow on the way to your house, and your installation won’t get delayed due to inclement weather. Mild temperatures are also ideal for window installation – the caulk that seals your windows adheres best in cooler temperatures.

Replacement windows will give your home an energy efficiency boost just in time for winter – our windows are built with premium energy efficiency features to eliminate drafts and keep your home comfortable no matter the season. You might even see savings on your energy bills just in time for the holiday shopping season! When you choose replacement windows from Window Nation, you’ll also enjoy a curb appeal boost – all our windows are custom-made to meet your home’s needs. Choose from a variety of style and color options to find the perfect fit for your home.

Furnace Upgrades

The last thing you’ll want during the biggest snowstorm of the year is for your furnace to go out. Before the temperatures drop, consider contacting a HVAC maintenance professional to inspect your furnace. They can perform routine maintenance and make repairs if necessary. However, if your furnace is more than 10 years old, they might recommend upgrading it with a modern, more energy efficient HVAC system. Though the cost might seem steep, you’ll enjoy the comfort of knowing you won’t have to make any upgrades or repairs for years to come. When choosing a new furnace, consider purchasing an Energy Star certified system – you could save money on your energy bills.

Siding Replacement

Siding is one of the most overlooked parts of your home, but it’s important to keep it well maintained. If your siding is looking worse-for-wear, you might consider replacing it with modern vinyl siding from Window Nation. Our siding is available in a variety of colors, giving your home a much-needed curb appeal boost in time for the holidays. You won’t have to worry about your siding cracking or fading due to inclement weather – our siding is durable, built to withstand the harshest weather conditions. Vinyl siding will also improve your home’s insulation, keeping your home comfortable all winter long.

Upgrade Insulation

Your home should feel cozy and comfortable in the Fall, not drafty and chilly. Improve your home’s comfort this Fall by upgrading your home’s insulation. We recommend hiring an expert to conduct a home energy audit to determine the places where you’re losing the most energy. Your attic is one of the biggest culprits due to poor insulation – we recommend upgrading your home’s insulation with fiberglass or foam insulation to keep the chilly air outside. It’s also important to seal any cracks you might find, particularly around your windows and doors, to eliminate drafts and keep your home comfortable.

Door Replacement

Nearly one-third of residential heating and cooling costs are attributed to energy loss through windows and doors. Why continue to waste money on your energy bills month over month? Consider upgrading your doors to replacement doors from Window Nation. We offer entry doors, French doors, and sliding doors, each custom-made to fit your home’s needs. Our doors are available in fiberglass and steel options, so you can choose the best style for your home. You’ll enjoy a curb appeal boost and added security – all Window Nation doors come standard with a multi-point locking system to make your home more secure.

Want to Learn More About our Windows?

When you’re ready to start your home improvement project, schedule an estimate with one of our exterior design consultants. Our team will discuss your project with you and go over your options so you can find the best windows, doors, and siding for your home. You’ll then receive a quote good for up to six months. Schedule your in-home estimate today at WindowNation.com.

Valentine’s Day used to mean a fancy date night out — but with COVID-19 still lingering, you may not feel comfortable dining at a busy restaurant. If you’re planning on spending Valentine’s Day at home this year, surprise your sweetie by freshening up your indoor space!  

 Here are five fun ways to make this Valentine’s Day at home special. 

 1.  Liven up the atmosphere with some flowers.

 Nothing screams Valentine’s Day more than a bouquet of flowers, so if you’re looking to add a touch of romance to your home, flowers are a great way to start. 

 Try setting a vase of roses out on your dinner table, or as a centerpiece on your mantle — and if you’re feeling romantic, scatter a trail of rose petals to set the mood.  

 Don’t be afraid to get creative, either! There are plenty of flowers that will refresh your living space this Valentine’s Day. For example, lilacs can be a great subtle touch for your kitchen, or you can give your loved one an orchid to spruce up your living room year-round. 

 2. Hang your romantic photos.

 Whether it just wasn’t the right time, or you’re still searching for the perfect frame, this is the perfect occasion to put up those romantic photos. 

 Highlight your favorite moments from your vacation or re-live a romantic night out with picture frames that draw your attention (without taking too much focus away from your memories). Give the spotlight to your favorite pictures with fun accent colors perfect for Valentine’s Day.  

 3.  Switch up your decor with something vibrant

 If you’ve been looking at the same color scheme in your home since Christmas, it might be time to do some redecorating. Try a bold color palette to make this Valentine’s Day memorable. 

 Or, if you’ve been waiting for the perfect moment to show off your favorite decor, now’s the time. Dust off your nice china and set out the candles. Or, if you’ve been looking for a reason to buy those heart-themed towels and comforters you found — go all out! 

 4.  Make some new additions to your living space

Don’t like how your favorite chair’s stuck in the corner? Prefer to move your sectional closer to your coffee table? Here’s your chance to do some re-arranging! Try something new and exciting. You could even position your loveseat closer to the fireplace to have a cozy night in. 

 Or, if something’s still missing, consider purchasing a completely new set of furniture! Nothing says “I’m committed” as a serious investment in your interior decorating. Just discuss it with your loved one first — this probably isn’t a gift you would buy on a whim. 

 5.  Have you considered remodeling? How about replacing your windows?

Don’t let your home miss out on the love this season. Old, outdated windows can put a chilly damper on a romantic evening, so if you’ve been putting off replacing your windows, now’s the time to make a change. 

 Bay windows provide the perfect cozy space to eat those leftover chocolates and watch the snowfall outside. Or, if you’re sitting by the fire and pesky drafts are making it difficult to get comfortable, an energy-efficient window replacement could be your best option. 

When you’re ready, give Window Nation a call. Our experienced technicians can help you find options and styles that fit your preferences and budget. Request a quote today, and discover how much replacement windows from Window Nation can liven up your home this Valentine’s Day. 

When the freezing Hartford winter weather hits, many homeowners fantasize about being able to put their home in a perfect, warm little bubble. Imagine being able to heat your house — and it staying a little summer-y microcosm, while the snow drifts outside. Keeping heat inside your house and the cold winter wind outside is not only about comfort, but it’s also about keeping your wallet as happy as it can be between Sox games. Keeping the house comfortable and heating bills as low as possible is first and foremost on every Hartford homeowner’s mind. When we have heat loss in our homes, it means that some of the precious warm air that we’ve collected is escaping to the outdoors. Reducing the amount of heat loss in your house is the best way to save on utility costs this winter. So if you’re looking to throw your wallet a bone, or just save more money for steamed cheeseburger night, here are five quick and easy ways to make your home more heat efficient.

Insulate the attic.

Is there insulation in your attic? If so, how much? The amount of insulation that’s there is crucial to your home’s ability to hold in the ever-rising warm air. If checking your attic insulation status is not something that you can easily do, contact a local contractor or insulation installer for an in-home evaluation. Hopefully, they have a degree from UConn, so you know you can trust them.

Insulate your walls.

Some older homes have very little insulation in their walls. The minimum that is usually suggested for exterior walls is six inches thick. But some historic homes may have only four inches or so. Removing your walls to add more fiberglass insulation is as impossible as the Hartford Whalers coming back, and it can be a very involved home repair. Blown-in insulation is an easier and more efficient option. The amount of insulation in your walls can be increased quickly and easily by using it. If you think that some of your home’s heat loss could be attributed to the lack of insulation in your walls, then consider adding some blown-in insulation. Here’s a tip: if you can hear the sounds of the agonizing Hartford traffic outside of your home, you could probably use more insulation.

Replacement windows.

Ill-fitting, warped old windows can certainly be a contributing factor to your heat loss. Old wooden windows frames with single-pane glass are a far cry from the efficient double-pane insulated glass windows of today. Vinyl replacement windows are the solution. They can be custom-made to fit your oddly-shaped antique windows, and they’re composed of the highest quality vinyl. These windows will add beauty to your Hartford home while making it more energy-efficient.

Replace your doors.

Entry doors can be a great focus for the exterior of your home. Much like the beautiful flowers in Elizabeth Park, they can easily add character, color, and style to set your house apart. Unfortunately, if these doors are old, they’re likely allowing cold air into your home and hot air out. Replacing your older door with a new replacement fiberglass or steel door can stop this unwanted air exchange.

Sealing other miscellaneous areas.

Hot and cold air can move through extremely small cracks and spaces. It doesn’t take a trip to the Connecticut Science Center to learn how to stop air from escaping through these holes in the wall. Check around your chimney, sink pipes, and appliance ducts for areas that could be re-sealed or caulked to prevent air movement. Inspect your basement utility door for any leaks or areas that are failing, and repair or replace as necessary. Another unlikely culprit? Outlets and switch covers. Use a gasket for a simple fix. Stopping heat loss is as simple as keeping as much hot air in your home as possible. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to put your Hartford home in a space-age bubble any time soon. But until you can, do your best to seal up your house by using these five simple steps to keep your home and wallet comfortable. To learn more about how Window Nation replacement windows and doors can help you save on energy bills while helping to increase your home value, schedule your free in-home estimate today!
Did you do a Zoom holiday last year? We’ve all probably had the experience of walking around the house, balancing a laptop in one hand while looking for decent lighting and an interesting backdrop. When holiday parties moved online, all you had to do was slide that stack of papers under the table and move the mugs out of camera view. You could rock a fancy shirt on top with sweatpants hiding underneath. It was party-planning for the digital age! This year, however, many of us are re-opening our homes and starting to host again — and our guests are going to see everything. So dust off those extra placemats, because holiday home improvement trends this year are all about welcoming loved ones back to our homes. Let’s spruce the place up and deck the halls!

Get ready for company

That guest room did yeoman’s work last year. It became the home office, the schoolroom, and the meditation retreat. You can bring it back to its former function, or give it a stylish upgrade and make your guests feel extra welcome. Swap out your old college futon for a brass daybed that has the look of a deep cozy sofa. Repeat that trendy brass look with some adjustable brass reading sconces to get the lighting right. When the guests leave, your updated space becomes the perfect spot to curl up with a book and take a long winter nap. We’re seeing designers using dark moody colors and wallpapers this year. Panetone’s just named “Very Peri” its 2022 Color of the Year. Pick up hints of this deep purple in patterned wallpaper, or go bold and paint the whole room. If you got handy with the jigsaw during last year’s DIY craze, you may want to consider a wall installation. The shiplap trend is still going strong, but big statement walls with wainscotting or paneling are starting to gain prominence. Some guest rooms are going so far as to mimic executive hotel suites. Your (cleaned-off!) desk can have a little coffee station on a tray and a mini-fridge nearby. The upside of this upgrade? In the middle of the night, you won’t have to encounter guests digging around the kitchen looking for snacks.

Make room for the Christmas Tree

Living rooms see lots of action this time of year. Before you set up your Christmas tree, take a good look at your flooring. Pull up that old carpeting already, and install some hardwood. Sweeping pine needles is a lot easier than vacuuming! Hardwood floors never go out of style and are a great long-term investment. If you hopped on the bandwagon and got a dog last year, you’ll understand firsthand why installing hardwoods is a home upgrade that pays for itself. The holidays are a perfect time to upgrade your television as well. In December it seems that every store runs a special on TVs. Consider a television that mimics the appearance of a piece of art— perhaps one you can cleverly integrate into a gallery picture wall. Sure, you marathon-binged a few weeks of your life away last year, but that can be our little secret.

Take it Outside

We all got really good at entertaining outdoors in 2021, and that trend isn’t going away any time soon. Learning how to have fun year-round in our backyards was an epiphany. If you walked into this trend piecemeal, it’s time to commit. Don’t just get a warmer jacket and a camping heater. Call a stonemason and have them build you a proper fire ring. You’ll make great memories with the kids this winter toasting ‘smores and singing carols around the fire. In the summer, you’ll get just as much mileage out of that fire ring when you roast hot dogs and set up your tents for a backyard camp-out.

Let the light in

The shorter days and longer nights take their toll on folks with Seasonal Affective Disorder this time of year, but there’s something you can do about it. We’re seeing lots of homeowners investigating ways to maximize their lighting. You can look at installing full-spectrum light bulbs in your existing fixtures or picking up a specialized sunlight therapy lamp. Most importantly, it may be time to upgrade your home’s windows. Consider enlarging your windows to really let the light in. Large picture-frame installations, like Bay and Bow windows, can make a huge difference in lighting your public spaces — plus they’ll improve your view. Home Window replacement has one of the highest returns on investment of any home improvement project out there. It’s a great present to give yourself. Schedule a free estimate today, and Window Nation can help you visualize what new windows can do for your home.