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11 Dec 2018

Top 3 Signs That Say It’s Time To Replace Your Windows

We all know that we should replace our windows at some point, but when is the right time, really? Most windows have a reasonably long life span. Newer vinyl windows can last upwards of 15 – 20 years and will do their job well for the duration of that time. However, there are a few cases where you should replace them sooner. Here are our top 3 signs to watch for!

Windows Don’t Open, Close, or Lock

If you are having issues with opening, closing or locking your windows, you should consider replacing them. There are a couple of reasons why this is something you should watch for. Windows are important for your safety and for your comfort, so mechanisms that don’t work can be hazardous.

In the event of an emergency, such as a house fire, windows offer important exit points throughout your home. If they can’t open easily, this significantly impacts your ability to use them for this purpose. Windows that don’t close or lock properly also impact your home’s safety.

Windows also provide comfort to your home. Being able to close your windows in the winter lowers your heating costs and keeps you cozier when it’s cold outside. Opening your windows allows for natural cooling of your home by allowing hot air to escape in the summer, reducing your cooling costs. Windows that don’t work can actually cost you money in the long run!

Windows Are Leaky, Sills Have Damage, Or Collect Condensation

Damaged windows need to be replaced. If you can see significant damage in the sills or frames, such as rotting wood, it might be time to replace your windows. Light damage can sometimes be repaired, so if you’re not sure, book a consultation to confirm. It’s important to deal with rot right away though, as it can easily cause further damage to window structure if left alone too long.

Leaks or significant condensation are also an indication that your windows need replacement. Water damage is dangerous for your home’s structural framework, as well as your health. Consistently wet areas can harbour mould, which can affect your air quality. It can also cause hidden rot. While some condensation can be normal, significant condensation can indicate a problem, and should be looked at.

Energy Efficiency

If your energy costs are increasing, it may also be time to replace your windows. This can be a sign that the windows in your home have lost their insulative properties. Old windows, especially single pane windows, are extremely inefficient at keeping heat in during the winter. Replacing your windows with energy efficient ones can save you quite a bit, even more if they’re on the most efficient list!

Older windows may be the more obvious choice to replace but there are some cases where other types of windows can reduce your energy efficiency. Cracked windows of any type will lose their ability to insulate effectively and should be replaced. Sealed unit windows with condensation between the panes have also lost their ability to insulate and should be replaced too.

 

Windows are an important part of your safety and comfort, so if your windows are showing any of these signs, you should consider repair or an upgrade. If you’re not sure whether something should be replaced or repaired, or you’re ready to upgrade and want to book an installation, give us a call. Our team is highly skilled and experienced, and we’re happy to help! Contact us today!

28 Nov 2018

Winter Installations: Can You Install Windows In Cold Weather?

Installing windows in the winter is not often the first thing we think of when it comes to cold weather renos. Luckily for us, on Vancouver Island, we don’t experience the same level of cold as our friends from the Interior. Sometimes drafts and moisture issues only become apparent in the colder months, and your spring window installation might seem just a bit too far away. Since drafty old windows are nobody’s idea of a cozy winter, this begs the question. Can you install windows in winter weather? The short answer is yes, but let’s take a look at why you shouldn’t worry about booking your window installation in cooler temperatures.

Is it safe to install windows in sub zero temperatures?

Surprisingly, windows can be installed in cold weather up until about -20C. Since we live in the more temperate coastal regions of BC, window installations are definitely possible throughout the winter months. There are still some challenges when it comes to cold weather installations though. The vinyl in newer windows becomes harder to cut, so tricky windows with lots of cuts, like bay windows, might need to wait until the spring.

What about when it’s wet outside?

Rain is one of the most common winter elements we’re exposed to on the Island. In many cases, installation during precipitation is possible, but this will depend on a number of things. High wind and heavy rain can make installation difficult, as it can present a safety hazard for our team. It can also lead to moisture entering the interior of your home, which is what we’re trying to prevent with high quality windows in the first place!

However, we can assure you that our installers are experienced in all types of weather, and they know when to try again another day. If conditions are really bad, we’re happy to reschedule an installation at a time that works for you.

Why should I install windows in the winter anyway?

Weather conditions aside, the winter is actually a good time to install windows. Installations in the winter don’t really have any disadvantages compared to the summer months and might even have some benefits. If you’re experiencing significant condensation or window leaks, waiting until the spring isn’t necessarily a good idea. Rain storms and high winds common to Vancouver Island can drive moisture deep into cracks and crevasses, causing lasting damage.

Installing your windows during the winter means that most of the issues you might have with a window will already be present, making it easier to find and fix them. Winter is a slower time of year as well, so you may have more options when it comes to installation dates.

 

In reality, while the weather isn’t as friendly, the benefits from upgrading your windows exist throughout the year. Replacing existing windows any time can give you energy savings and increase your comfort level. If you’re experiencing significant issues with your windows, waiting can even be detrimental. If you have window issues, such as leaks or cracks, don’t wait until the spring! Give us a call and book your consultation today!

23 Oct 2018

3 Tricks for Getting Rid of Window Condensation

As the weather gets cooler, it’s pretty common to get window condensation. There’s a simple reason this happens. Condensation is generally the result of temperature change. When the temperature drops, humidity tends to increase indoors along with the heat. Cold air cools your windows, causing the warmer, more humid air inside to condense as it hits the cold glass. It is normal to have window condensation, even with newer panes, if your home’s humidity is high. It’s a good idea to monitor window condensation and it can easily be removed with a soft towel. Regular removal can help prevent mould and mildew buildup from excess moisture. While drying your windows is effective, we’ve got a few tricks to help get rid of window condensation before it hits the glass.

Remove Humidity to Prevent Window Condensation

One of the easiest ways to help remove condensation is to reduce the amount of moisture in the air. If you have humidifiers, turning them down will reduce some of the condensation on your windows. If you experience high humidity without a humidifier, using a dehumidifier will also help reduce moisture in your home. Dehumidifiers come in many different models and sizes, so look for one that works for the space where you’re finding the most condensation. Common areas to find condensation include bathrooms and kitchens. Hidden humidity culprits include plants and fish tanks. Lids are available for most aquariums to prevent excess moisture from escaping and moving houseplants away from windows can help prevent condensation from building up.

Increase Air Flow to Prevent Window Condensation.

Increasing air flow will help to prevent window condensation, especially in problem areas like kitchens or bathrooms. Using stove and bathroom fans will help remove some of the warm air released when cooking or taking a shower. Ceiling fans will help keep warm air circulating. Keeping your windows open a crack can also help prevent window condensation. Another option is an air exchanger, which brings in fresh air from outside and removes stale, humid air from the house. While more expensive, there are several options available and these units can also help keep interior air clean.

Upgrade Your Windows to Prevent Window Condensation.

Upgrading your windows can help prevent window condensation too. Single pane windows are notorious for condensation, as they lack the extra insulating effect that newer windows have. Newer windows with condensation between the panes should also be replaced, as this is generally a sign of a broken seal. In any case, checking weather stripping around doors and windows is a good idea, as poor seals will contribute to moisture problems.

Preventing window condensation is an important part of looking after your home’s health. Mould and mildew buildup can cause many issues, so it’s necessary to control it. While these tricks can help prevent significant condensation, it’s important to dry off any remaining condensation with a soft towel often, which will also prevent moisture damage to your sills. If you’re experiencing excessive window condensation and are thinking of upgrading, we’ve got you covered. Don’t wait, give us a call today!

25 Sep 2018

Exterior Winter Prep: Getting Your Exterior Ready for a Long Winter’s Nap

Fall has returned, and with it comes the yearly list of exterior winter prep. Packing lunches and raking leaves is about to become the norm, and along with that, colder weather. Before the frost hits and the dark nights commence, keep your house cozy and your yard set for winter with these tips.

Exterior Winter Prep for Windows, Doors, and Gutters

Windows and doors play a pretty big part in your home’s performance, especially in winter. Windows and doors that are improperly maintained can add to your energy bill and keep you feeling chilly from
drafts. Checking for leaks around windows and doors is an important part of exterior winter prep. Airtight seals helps to lower your energy bill and keeps the heat in. Checking seals is particularly important for single pane windows. If your windows are in bad shape, it might be time to consider upgrading. New vinyl windows keep heat inside the house and reduce your overall energy consumption. Replacing damaged weather stripping is also part of exterior winter prep.

Now’s a good time to remove any excess dirt and debris from window sills and tracks, and give the windows a good wash too. If your home experiences high humidity, it may also be a good idea to invest
in a dehumidifier or lowering the thermostat slightly, to prevent condensation. Prevent damage to exterior walls by giving them a scrub to remove dirt, mould and moss. Doing this as part of your exterior
winter prep can help prevent them from growing in the ideal conditions that wet winters bring. Gutters should be cleaned as well to promote drainage.

Condensation from humidity.

Exterior Winter Prep for the Yard:

Part of exterior winter prep is preparing tools and equipment for winter, as well as making sure that winter tools like snow shovels are easily available should you need them. Prep your equipment for the cool weather by removing gas from tanks and draining water from hoses and water features. Clean garden tools before putting them away to keep them from rusting or degrading. Bring out snow shovels or blowers, salt, and any other tools you need to make your job easier when the time comes. Doing this has the added bonus of keeping you from tripping over the beach chairs to get to them. Checking the roof on your home and the shed is also worth adding to your exterior winter prep, as missing or damaged shingles can allow water to leak into your home or shed.

Broken shingles allow moisture to cause permanent damage over time.

Exterior Winter Prep for the Garden

Another important part of exterior winter prep is the garden! Now is the ideal time to plant some colourful fall plants to liven up your space. It’s also a great time to plant bulbs that will bloom in spring. If you have any plants that need to be divided or transplanted, the cooler weather will make it easier on them. Mulching is another great addition to exterior winter prep, as it will help protect the soil and the roots as the temperatures get colder. Be sure to bring sensitive plants to a sheltered or indoor area to prevent stress. Doing the same with container plants will also keep pots from cracking if the soil freezes. Adding both these things to your exterior winter prep checklist will make the eventual switch to spring a lot easier.

Chrysanthemums and other fall flowers add brightness when other plants start to die off.

Taking the time to do a little bit of exterior winter prep will save you time, money, and a headache later. If you need windows or doors replaced, even in the dead of winter, we’ve got you covered. Whether it’s a new patio door, a sealed unit, or something else, we’d love to help you stay cozy this winter! Give us a shout today!

09 Aug 2018

Creative Mirror Uses

Outfitting small and dark spaces with mirrors is more popular than ever, especially with the many creative mirror uses available. With smaller spaces a regular occurrence today, visual space is a necessity. Mirrors have been used to brighten rooms for many years, but that doesn’t mean that using them is unoriginal. We’ve compiled a few creative mirror uses to help you brighten and expand your space, regardless of size.

Creative Mirror Uses: Traditional Locations.

Mirrors look anything but conventional these days, but they’ve been traditionally used to enhance spaces for centuries. One popular location is opposite a window or light source. In a small space or a dark room, a mirror reflects the nearby light. This creates a window-like effect, offering the perfect solution when renovations aren’t an option. Other traditional locations include the end of a small room, above a table or fireplace, and behind couches or chairs. Though these locations are traditionally pleasing, creative mirror uses include implementing a variety of shapes and styles to suit the modern home.

Creative Mirror Uses: The Great Outdoors

It is becoming less and less common for homes to have a large outdoor space, and creative mirror uses reflect this (no pun intended!). Many people have started using mirrors as a way of broadening their outdoor space. Hanging mirrors on an exterior wall helps to reflect gardens and deck designs to give the illusion of space. If your space has a small water feature, placing a mirror behind it can give you visual space while adding appeal to a small area. If you do choose to use mirrors out of doors, make sure that they are hung in areas protected from the rain, as the elements can damage the silvering.

Creative Mirror Uses: Functional Art

Creative mirror uses are perhaps most noticeable in functional art. Multiple mirrors in unusual shapes can be used to make an art feature in a hallway. Using mirror pieces as part of an indoor mosaic can add visual appeal to a room too. Framed mirrors can also be mixed with photos or paintings to create a feature wall.  Any of these ideas will bring light and space into dark areas while still providing beauty in your space. If you’re into DIY, mirrors have also been used to freshen up old furniture and transform light fixtures.

Creative Mirror Uses: Placement, Placement, Placement.

Though the saying goes “location, location, location”, with creative mirror uses, it should be “placement, placement, placement”. Since the right location could be anywhere, depending on where you need the extra boost, placement is the most important aspect of creative mirror uses. For enhancing light, take care to avoid too much of it, otherwise it will be too overpowering.  When creating space, your creative mirror uses should be positioned to give you the best view. You’ll be disappointed if you see nothing but carpet or power lines. Creative mirror uses aren’t recommended on frequently used doors and cabinets. Be tactful in private areas like bathrooms.

Regardless of what your creative mirror uses are, you can be certain that, done right, they will enhance your home. Be it outdoors or indoors, making your space brighter or bigger, there’s a creative mirror use for you. Need a hand with placement? Looking for a mirror to fit an awkward place? We can help! Our team is highly knowledgeable and can advise you on the best place for your mirror. We also offer custom sized mirrors and for that particularly tricky space, we can even cut holes for light fixtures and outlets. Give us a call today!

11 Jul 2018

Deck Designs – Things to Consider

Deck Designs on your list of things to explore this summer? Deck designs and patios are a great addition to any home. In addition to providing a comfortable space to enjoy the outdoors, deck designs can also make a statement! With the ever-increasing supply of products available, the options are nearly limitless to create a visually pleasing space that you feel comfortable in. If you are looking to spice up your patio this summer, we’ve got a few suggestions!

Deck Designs and Railings:

Aside from the obvious safety factors, railings can really bring patios to life. Upgrading or replacing your existing railings can freshen up older deck designs and patios. While there are many materials available for railings, from simple wood to classic wrought iron, glass is one of our favourites! Glass railings provide an uninterrupted view as well as a windscreen. Additionally, they tend to be relatively low maintenance, since they won’t corrode or rust like iron and they won’t require regular staining like wood. We can install glass railings with a top rail or without, so they’re also customizable. Regardless of what you choose, upgrading or replacing your railings can rejuvenate your outdoor space.

Deck Designs, Patio Covers and Awnings:

Patio covers and retractable awnings can go a long way to adding some life to your deck designs and your patios. Both choices allow you to use your outdoor space longer, as they provide protection from sun and rain. Patio covers are fixed structures and they can be made with opaque roof panels, glass, or a combination of the two. They are virtually maintenance free and have a long lifespan. Retractable awnings are not fixed, so you can use them when needed. They are constructed out of fabric and can be motorized or manually set up. Awnings are low maintenance, requiring only a small amount of cleaning to keep them functional. They have a long lifespan as well, though the fabric will need replacing with time. Either option will offer you more opportunities to enjoy your outdoor space!

Deck Designs, Containers and Planters:

Containers also make a statement for your deck designs and your patios. With so many different types and sizes now available, they can be a simple way to add style to your outdoor space. Some planters have directional designs, so if you have glass railings, make sure you like the back design too! Style isn’t the only thing to consider though; the materials your planters are made with can make a difference to how much maintenance you’ll need to do. Metal containers for full sun deck designs and patios may need additional watering as they’ll heat up quickly, and terra cotta or glazed pots may need to be stored during the winter to prevent cracking in freezing temperatures. Make sure your choices suit your deck designs, whether your look is laid back and low maintenance, elegant and sophisticated, or vibrant and fun!

Deck Designs and Plants:

Flowers and herbs can really bring deck designs and patios to life! Whether you want classic greenery or a riot of colour, plants are a quick and easy way to bring a fresh look to your outdoor space. While you’re choosing plants, you should consider whether you will have new flowers replanted every year or whether you will want plants that mature over time. Your local garden centre can advise you on the best plants for your deck designs, patio, and the look you’re going for. If you choose to house multiple plants in the same container, consider planting taller flowers or herbs in the middle of your planter. This is especially important with glass railings, since you’ll want to see your plants from all sides!

 

Deck Designs and Furniture:

Outdoor furniture comes in a wide variety of materials and styles. Many places carry outdoor furniture and can advise you on what materials will best suit your needs. Some considerations include durability, style, and required maintenance. If you already have furniture that you love, consider livening things up with outdoor cushions or a new coat of paint. Furniture makes a statement in your deck designs, so make sure it matches the feel of what you’re going for. Consider whether your style will work with weathering, or whether your look will need to be refreshed regularly to keep the feel you want. Do your research first!

 

Ultimately, whether you choose to upgrade your railings, buy new containers, plant a herb garden, install some shelter, or repaint your favourite chair, make sure you choose something you’re going to enjoy. If you’re comfortable with your deck designs, you’ll be using those deck designs for a long time to come!

10 Jan 2018
natural_light_office

Three Easy Ways to Add More Natural Light to Your Office

There have been countless studies that prove natural light in the workplace helps foster more productivity and better overall health of employees. It has been proven that office workers who have more exposure to light have better sleep quality and a better overall mood. So, if your office is lacking in the natural light department, windows are your answer.

Here are three easy ways to up your office’s natural light exposure with windows.

  1. Add a Transom Window
    A transom window rests on a horizontal beam above a door frame or an already existing window. This type of window was originally used to add additional light without exposing the room to the prying eyes of outsiders. Today, we suggest adding a transom window to increase natural light in any room. In our opinion, the more windows the better.
  2. Add Mirrors
    Similar to our previous post on using mirrors to brighten any room in your home, the same can be said for mirrors in your office space. You can install large mirrors across from existing windows or in dark corners of your office to reflect even more light from outside.
  3. Pay Attention to Lighting
    Overhead fluorescent lighting is common in most workplaces, which can really put a damper on the overall well being of your employees. To combat this, we suggest boosting brightness with soft and subtle lighting that can be adjusted to work with existing natural light from glass windows. Essentially, you are enhancing the natural light coming into your office instead of blocking it. Place ambient lighting in dark areas of the workplace where natural light doesn’t reach such as hallways or small corners.

If your commercial office space is looking more like a dungeon, than a place that fosters productivity and healthy well being, it might be time to consider adding more windows to your office.

Contact us today and we can help you work out a plan to boost natural light through energy efficient windows and mirrors that will take your office out of the dark ages.

03 Jan 2018
de-frost-windshield

Three Ways to De-Ice Your Windshield – and Fast!

‘Tis the season of frosty mornings and frozen windshields, which when in a hurry can put a huge damper on the start to your day. But fear not, Budget Glass is here with three handy and quick ways to de-ice your windshield this winter season.

Homemade De-Icer Spray

  • Water & Salt. Pour water into a spray bottle with a scoop or two of salt.
  • Water & Rubbing Alcohol. Fill up a spray bottle with two parts rubbing alcohol and one part tap water.

Both of these options will lower the freezing point of water. When sprayed on your windshield, they will quickly and effectively melt the ice. Make sure to store your de-icing spray at room temperature between uses (not in the trunk of your car).

De-Fog windows from the inside

  • Once you’ve removed the frost from the outside of your windshield, your windows might start fogging up from the inside. A handy trick is to keep a chalkboard eraser in your car. Use the eraser to wipe down the condensation on the inside of the windows.

Prevent overnight windshield frost before it starts

  • You know what’s better than standing out in the cold with your homemade de-ice spray to melting a frosted windshield? Not having to deal with frost at all! You can prevent or lessen the amount of overnight frost on your windshield by wiping the windows and windshield down with undiluted, white vinegar after you park your car for the night.

Schedule Auto Glass Services

Winter is the season of windshield chips and cracks. With fluctuating temperatures from day to night, the melting and expansion cause chips and cracks and makes existing ones even bigger.

Contact Budget Glass
We offer fast and reliable windshield repair and replacement services to have your car back to normal in no time!


Schedule an appointment today.

 

19 Jun 2017

Replacing Glass: Change your Glass

Glass Replacement: Change your Glass.

Replacing Glass; Change your Glass: We often grow accustomed to the way something looks and think "it's just the way it is". However swapping out glass elements can add new life or a new look to many elements around your home. Here are 5 places in your home where you can take a second look and add a new sense of style to your décor.

Cabinet and Cupboard Door Glass

Old cabinet door glass can make your cabinets look outdated. Drop in some new glass though and get an instant upgrade to a much more modern and stylish look. Perhaps you’ve been looking at your old kitchen cabinet cupboard doors and considering a kitchen renovation. Turning these solid doors into glass doors will create a stunning new look.

Replacing Glass in your Railings

The idea of replacing your aluminium railing might not be in the budget for this year but there are other options to consider. While older glass is strong and durable, it can look weathered after a while and start showing its age. Replacing the glass panels can be the easiest way to update your aluminium railing and have it looking like new.

If it's a new railing that you’re looking for, we can certainly provide you with a free quote. Or, you can look at a DIY Wood and Glass railing system. There are many DIY step by steps tutorials out there, if you’re looking for a project to fill up a few weekends.

If you love the idea of looking through your glass railings but you really don't appreciate the neighbour's kids staring at you while you're enjoying your morning coffee or end of the day cold one, we have good news. You can solve your problem by replacing the glass panels on the sides of the deck with obscure glass. For even more privacy consider a glass privacy wall.

Replacing Glass in your Windows and Patio Doors

Although nothing brightens a room better than new windows (frames and glass) there is another option: just replace the glass. Referred to as a Sealed Unit, the glass portion of the window can be removed and replaced without having to take the window out of the house. Sealed Units are typically comprised of 2 (Double Glaze) or 3 (Triple Glazed) glass sheets with Low E on various glass surfaces and Argon in between the panes for added insulating value. Sealed units that are 15+ years old aren't nearly as energy efficient as these newer units and their replacement could mean some big savings for you.

Sunrooms & Patio Covers

Tired of your windows sweating in your older sunroom? Don't like the discoloured sheets of semi-transparent plastic that are covering your patio cover? New glass to the rescue(again)! Replace single sheets of glass with sealed units to provide more energy efficiency and substitute that old yellowing plastic with single tempered glass sheets, or better yet, sealed units.

Fireplace Glass

Yes we can swap that out as well. Like sealed units, the glass technology that is available these days is far superior to that of 10+ years ago. You'll want to look for  Neo-ceramic Glass as this has now become part of the Building Code for glass and wood burning fireplaces.

Can we help you? The glaziers at Budget Glass are at the ready to help you with any and all of the projects mentioned above. We'd be happy to make suggestions as to what type of glass to use for your project, the right thicknesses and tips for best usage. There are several things to take into consideration, and our expertise is at your service. Can we help you?