How to choose the right contractor for replacing glass

Until it is actually time you will not really familiarise yourself with the process of window replacement and the cost involved. From the range and options available today it is no easy task and figuring out the best choice to suit your needs and pocket is something only a good and experienced contractor can do.

First you need to interview the contractor and ask for an estimate and compare prices.  If he is good, the pride in his work will shine through along with his enthusiasm and job knowledge and involvement in the process.

You have struck gold when you do find the contractor who will not only understand your needs but also advise you on the best possible way to go about the entire process of window glass replacement. But how do you know when you have stuck gold? Here are some pointers of what questions to ask your contractor:

How to choose the right contractor for replacing glass

    1. Full name and address of his company – This will help give you an idea of not only the location of the office (should any dispute or disagreement arise) but also information about how many years they have been in business
    2. If his company has insurance – Ask to see the general liability insurance and worker’s compensation insurance certificates which will protect you from the ill-effects of an accident. They should of course be current and valid. Contractors that do not have insurance might charge less but it is a risky proposition for you.
    3. Is the company licensed or does the contractor have credentials – Although not all states mandate that contractors should have a license, those that do have a specific one that requires your contractor to pass a written test to gauge his knowledge and professionalism. The contractor may tell you that he has a business license but that is more for a tax need than work skill.
    4. For how long has his company been in business – Less than three years indicates a degree of being unstable and a low learning curve. However start-ups can be encouraged with proper references and a look at the last job completed.
    5. Referrals or references from previous body of work – Photos do make an impact and help, but a firsthand look makes a huge difference in choosing your contractor. Failing which, a list of client names and their phone numbers to cross check.
    6. The company’s track record for handling and solving customer complaints – When taking referrals and phone numbers of previous clients this aspect can also be looked into. Specifically ask about timeliness, information exchange, room for changes and finally whether the company inspires trust.

Window Replacement Glass Types

With so many variations like window type, finishing materials, types of glass and energy efficient methods, choosing and replacement windows for your home is an arduous task.

Some information about the various forms of window glass replacements for your home helps you make a good decision.

Glass mostly comes in three varieties that you can choose from:

  • Single-glazed
  • Double-glazed
  • Triple-glazed

Barely used in construction of new homes or projects of window replacement nowadays, single glazing is very thin. The heat loss and gain in extreme measure is the only problem with it, because it provides a minimized layer between the inside and the outside of your home.

Double glazing is a lot more popular because it is considered a standard installation for replacement windows. In the double glazed type the two layers of the material, are often separated with a fill of Argon gas or Krypton gas. Also double glazed glass is thicker than single glaze which helps to create resistance, of sorts against heat loss and gain, which makes the windows an energy efficient design.

Although triple glaze glass is catching on more than single and double glazed glass, it is still to gain ground over double glaze. Like double glazing, triple glazed glass provides better resistance to heat loss and gain but its price is still not considered as cost effective.

Window Replacement Glass Types

Variances and available glass options

Different additives and finishes to glass panes are some of the benefits of triple glazed and double glazed window glass to improve energy efficiency. some options:

  • Low-E
  • Heat Absorbers
  • Reflective Varieties
  • Clear Glass

During manufacturing, Lower emissivity or Low-e has a special coat mixed which helps to reflect light off the surface of the glass but from the outside. This not only lessens the heat passage through the window up to 70%, but also helps keep the room cool whilst allowing 100% light to pass through.

Similar to low-e glass, Heat Absorbing Glass has a tint which decreases the heat through the window. Also known as the solar heat gain coefficient or SHGC. But because through conduction and radiation it allows heat to pass through, it is not as good as low e-glass.

Reflective varieties of this glass offer the same functions of as other with absorb heat and lower emissivity; however, it decreases the amount of light through the window. So the visible transmittance (VT) is what is making the room darker.

Clear glass allows light to pass straight through because it misses coating or layers of film and does not reflect. Therefore it results in no heat control (loss or gain) and resistance to condensation, so in short it is the most inefficient option.


Energy Efficient Glass Windows

The whole idea of windows is to bring together the occupants of a building/ home to the outside world through daylight, a nice view and ventilation but also to protect them from the elements.

Energy Efficient Glass WindowsWhen building your own home, it is important to know a little bit about fenestration; which is energy-efficient windows, doors and skylights that help to bring down your home’s heating, cooling and lighting expenditure. Before choosing the new windows for your home it is a good idea to find out determine what type will be most effective and where exactly you can improve on the energy efficiency. Understanding the energy performance ratings of windows based on the climate in your area coupled with your home’s design is a good way to start.

The last three decades has seen leaps and bounds made in thermal, solar and visible light requirements, therefore choosing the correct energy-efficient glass can reduce costs by lowering heating and cooling bills. They are a burden on the pocket however to avoid the high energy bills and water damage energy efficient glass windows really help and are a long lasting prospect. Here are some pointers:

  • The long life of glazing and costly retrofits, make it important to understand today’s market and the benefits of the products offered.
  • Consider three things while buying energy efficient glass – performance of insulation (U-factor), solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) and visible light transmittance (VLT or VT).
  • You must take into account the climate, type of building and overall design when considering your purchase. For example, a low U-factor (less heat loss) is critical in cold weather; a low SHGC (less solar heat gain) is a must when it is a problem of overheating. Visible transmittance gains importance when design has the element of daylight is incorporated in it.
  • Low-E coatings have the double benefit of a reduced U-factor and SHGC while keeping high levels of visible light transmittance (VT). The latest low-E coatings, known as triple silver low-E for three layers of silver oxide, is the best answer to date for reflecting solar heat without comprising daylight. If there is a problem of too much glare, tinted glass combined with low-E coatings is the perfect solution for controlling glare while preventing solar heat gain even further.
  • In a climate where cooling load reduction is important, reflective coatings are best for maximum solar control. Unlike low-E coatings, reflective coatings dismiss a high level of infrared solar heat and visible light, which give the occupants access to views but helps to reduce solar heat gain and glare.
  • If your windows or glass of the windows have to be replaced choose a high-performance glaze instead of a regular one which is cheaper. But since this option is not always affordable, you can use retrofit window films with low-E and tinting.

You can improve the energy efficiency of your existing windows: If you install storm windows, caulking and weather stripping and also treatments or covering for your windows you can vastly save on energy bills.

Storm windows decrease leakage of air and increase comfort. Caulking which is good for cracks, gaps and narrow joints and weather stripping for doors and windows also reduce leakage of air. Window treatments and coverings though are not as effective.

Choosing new energy-efficient windows: When it is time to replace your windows it will be more prudent and to choose new energy-efficient ones, even though the price may create a dent in your pocket because in the long run the windows pay for themselves with lower energy bills and cost of lighting.


1,000’s of Windows

1,000's of Windows100’s of Customers
26 Years Service
NO Leaks
Ask About Tax Credits!

Lifetime glass breakage repair warranty*
100% referencable
PUD and PSE recommended


WE have installed thousands of wood and vinyl windows in the Puget Sound and the surrounding area. Unlike rack windows, every replacement window and glass unit we use is critically measured and ordered specifically for your home. We use only the highest grades of sealants, and flashing for your window installation. All windows are completely detailed, hand cleaned and inspected upon installation. We have the experience to do the job right! Our expert sales staff will assist you in the planning of your next window replacement or upgrade project. Join the list of many satisfied customers. From glass units to French doors to bay windows, let Blue Sky Glass be the window replacement company you choose for your new window installation.

There are many more products to choose from. Vinly Clad Windows, Wood Clad Windows, Vinyl Windows, bay windows, new construction style windows, replacement windows, Low e glass, double and triple low E glass, and many types and styles of grid patterns are available. With all these choices it can be difficult to decide what is the best window installation to get. As an independent contractor, Blue Sky Glass can help you select the right product for your individual style, budget, and needs.

By replacing your old drafty windows with new energy efficient windows you are adding value and beauty by transforming your home from the inside out. Replacement windows is one of the best areas a home owner can invest in to get the best return on their home improvement project. By installing duel glazed glass, Low E, Argon Gas Units in conjunction with vinyl or fiberglass window frames, you ensures greater year round comfort, increased savings, and a new look to your home you can be proud of. We are the clear difference in replacement windows. Call us now. (the Puget Sound, WA )