Now that the holiday season is upon us, many homeowners are starting to take their minds off of home improvements in favor of holiday gatherings and activities such as buying gifts for family members and getting ready for thanksgiving. One thing most people would agree on is that the holidays can be both stressful and expensive at times. First there is planning and preparing a large meal for thanksgiving. Then the very next day Christmas shopping begins for most Americans. The rush of this season combined with shorter days and colder weather leads people to neglect their homes aside from the decorations of the seasons. How Well Does Your Home Hold Heat?
But how enjoyable of an experience can you have with your family indoors when your currenthome is letting in excessive amounts of the cold air in through your doors and windows? To keep everyone warm, many families often have to spend extraordinary amounts of money on heating bills during the fall and winter months. This is particularly true when you have family over to enjoy the festivities. When it comes to family and friends, you never want to host them in an uncomfortable environment that is far colder than the temperature a warm holiday home should be at. Worse yet, you probably don’t want them to think you are not willing to pay a little bit extra to keep them warm when you are supposed to be their host for this special time of year.
Did you know that on average around 33 percent of heat loss is from the doors and windows on your home? This number can often be close to 50 percent or more. For an inefficient house that is expensive to heat, new windows may be the perfect solution. In addition to being costly to heat your home, many people realize how wasteful it is to use energy from a heating system that literally goes right out the window instead of having staying inside where you need it. In fact, many homeowners have purchased Renewal by Andersen brand replacement windows for this precise reason, to create a more environmentally friendly and efficient home. Renewal Windows Help to Keep Thousands of Homeowners Warm Each Winter
Let me tell you a little more about these windows. They are made from a highly durable and
insulating material known as Fibrex. This composite is exclusive to the Andersen brand and represents years of research aimed towards perfecting the home window. Low-E glass is another reason why Renewal by Andersen windows will work to insulate your home so well. Because each window is made to individually fit to the precise dimension of each and every window frame in your home, there is no space around the edges of your new windows for any air to leak in. With over 100 years in the business, they have truly thought of every aspect of what makes for the perfect window. This has come through technological innovation and from listening to homeowners who care about the look and performance of their windows throughout the years. This is just as true when it comes to colors and aesthetics. A Gift for the Whole Family
Replacement windows may not seem like the most obvious choice for a Christmas gift, but if you want to get something that is practical and will make for a comfortable family gathering, it may be an option you should consider. New windows have the ability to keep your family comfortable all year long, impress the neighbors, increase the value of your home and save you money on heating and cooling bills all year around.
The peak of summer is just around the corner bringing long days, searing heat, and summer fun. Take advantage of these secrets to keep your house energy efficient and comfortable this summer.
Use grill, microwave, or stove to prepare food instead of using the oven on particularly warm days. If you live somewhere that cools off overnight, shut off the AC and crack the windows to let the cool air in during the PM hours. Avoid setting lamps and TV’s next to your AC thermostat. Heat emanating from those appliances is sensed by the thermostat, which often causes the AC to run longer than needed. Finally, only run your dishwasher, washing machine, and dryer in the cooler hours, as they are also sources of heat that stays stuck inside.
Any of these simple lifestyle changes can help reduce your summer cooling bills, but the sure-fire way to prepare your home for the heat might be something you haven’t thought of before, ditching your old, drafty windows for Renewal by Anderson replacement windows. If you currently own aged single pane windows, you might not realize it, but you are allowing your air conditioning to escape, or rather permitting additional heat to come in and negate your cooling. This can cost you hundreds of dollars every month and thousands every summer. The cool air that you are producing is actually going out of the window.
Check out the video above to watch the energy efficient Andersen difference at work.
By picking Renewal by Andersen for your replacement windows, you will be able to stop the cold air from trickling out and the warm air from finding its way in, diminishing your air conditioning costs and making your living space comfortable. In contrast to cheap vinyl windows that bend or even melt in the heat, Renewal by Anderson windows are made with our patented Fibrex material, that holds up with the sun’s rays and weight of glass panes. To achieve unmatched results combine our replacement windows with shades, blinds, or plantation shutters.
So get ready for the coming months and begin thinking about ways to reduce your monthly energy costs even more.
If you have never
bought replacement windows before, you not even be aware of the different style names, like double hung. This timeless window design is by far the most common choice for residential homes, complementing a wide array of architecture. It is a versatile design that operates by sliding either the top or bottom sash down or up to create ventilation. As it so happens, Renewal by Andersen double hung windows are the best replacement windows in production. Allow us to tell you why.
Hastle Free Cleaning. Andersen replacement windows are nearly maintenance free. However, dust, sea spray, dirt, and smoke can stick to glass over the course of a year. Andersen double hung windows tilt out for convenient cleaning without using ladders or even going outside. We suggest using a soft cloth and gentle cleaning solution such as vinegar, soapy water, or residential glass cleaner 2 or 3 times each year. Simply wipe the glass down, dry with a squeegee or rag, and push the sash back into position. If there is a really stubborn corner, cans of condensed air with straw extensions work wonders.
Countless Design Options. Pick from an array of different colors to obtain the precise look you want on both the inside and outside of your house. You will never have to paint again, because Fibrex doesn’t fade, chip, or flake away like paint on wooden window frames. Grille patterns also add their own unique style possibilities. Pick from Colonial, Prairie, Modified Prairie, and Farmhouse. We even let you determine the number of squares you want on each sash with colonial grilles. Finally, our estate and standard hardware collections will put the finishing touches on your replacement windows with ornamental locking systems.
The Stamp of A pproval. Andersen has been in the window making business for over 100 years. During that time, we have grown a reputation for unbeatable quality. Most architects even recommend our products to builders and homeowners, displaying the Andersen product name and “or equivalent” on the formal plans. Why buy a look-alike that is less durable and doesn’t maintain temperature as well when you could invest in the real thing? On top of that, there are numerous historic districts that only allow Andersen replacement windows to preserve the beauty and structural integrity of culturally rich neighborhoods.
Revolutionary Building Material. Every window frame is made from our innovative Fibrex material that is maintenance free, much like vinyl windows. What truly sets Fibrex apart is its minimal expanding and contracting from heat build-up. The expansion and contraction of vinyl along with vinyl’s propensity to bend under the mass of multiple glass panes causes seals to fail as quickly as five years after installation. Fibrex also doesn’t rot like wood does when it doesn’t receive vigilant care.
We love to tell our customers in Cape Cod, Rhode Island, and Connectic
ut that Andersen windows are made from a material called Fibrex. So what is it and why should you care about it? Allow us to tell you why there was a need for something better, and how we stepped up to fill those shoes. Window frames have traditionally been made from wood for hundreds of years. That being the case, regular maintenance has always been a part of the picture due to inevitable wear and tear from weather over time. Wood is prone to expanding and contracting with fluctuations in temperature. It can also pit, peel, crack and corrode even without extreme climate conditions. For such a staple architectural element like windows, Andersen didn’t think this was an acceptable standard for replacement windows.
Renewal by Andersen found a solution to the problems presented from traditional wood frames with the revolutionary Fibrex material. Fibrex is a combination of both pulverized wood fiber and thermo-plastic polymers. The result is a window that is more durable, requires less maintenance, and insulates better than either substance alone. What’s more is that the material’s structural stability means a narrower frame and larger glass area for your viewing pleasure.
Also, as much as we know you love standing on rickety ladders 15 feet of the ground while holding a heavy paint can, we thought it wouldn’t hurt to take painting out of the picture for you too. Choose from a myriad of colors including, but not limited to white, sandstone, pine, oak, and maple. You will be amazed at how vibrant the color of your replacement windows is even 15 to 20 years down the road.
Finally, 40% of the raw material used in production is reclaimed wood fiber from Anderson manufacturing centers. We pride ourselves on being Energy Star qualified, meeting the high energy efficiency standards set by the U.S Department of Energy, and with windows lasting longer than ever, landfills are happy to see less dinged up, old windows taking up space every year.
At Andersen Corporation, we’ve been creating industry-leading products in
America for over 100 years. An Energy Star® Partner of the Year (2011, Product Manufacturer- Windows category), we’re a proud pioneer in developing energy-efficient, highly sustainable, environmentally responsible products and packaging. One of our most innovative products, Fibrex®, is a composite material we’ve been using in window frames for almost two decades. Now Fibrex® will be put to even greater use in an exclusive partnership we’ve forged with SOLON Corporation. SOLON produces large commercial and utility-scale photovoltaic (PV) systems in North America, and they’re now bringing Fibrex® into the photovoltaic market.
Photovoltaics are a method of utilizing solar energy to generate electric power. Solar panels have become increasingly popular, and the opportunity to use the durable yet low-maintenance product, Fibrex®, in their production affords SOLON the ability to make their panels lighter and more sustainable while also reducing heating and cooling constraints and negating the need for grounding. Fibrex® is made from
40% reclaimed wood fiber
, making it an environmentally conscious product, which is again ideal for the PV market.
Because Fibrex® is designed to be exposed to the elements without the weight, bulk, or maintenance needs of its conventional predecessors, it is an excellent option for SOLON’s revolutionary commercial rooftop PV systems. This month, SOLON is debuting a
groundbreaking new rooftop PV system
in Dallas, Texas, utilizing Fibrex® for the first time. This installation will pave the way for PV products using Fibrex®, which SOLON is using successfully in PV racking due to its stiffness, water resistance, compact design, and durability. In the future, SOLON plans to utilize the versatile composite to create lighter, more environmentally responsible panels in their commercial, utility-scale, and even residential markets.
For more information about the partnership between Andersen Corporation and SOLON Corporation,
review the press release
. You may also read more about
by following the links provided.
Due to Hurricane Irene, Renewal by Andersen of RI, Cape Cod & Northern CT is currently closed. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. We hope to have power restored soon. Thank you for your patience.
Renewal by Andersen of RI, Cape Cod & Northern CT is now fully operational and will resume normal business hours on August 31st!
Considering floor replacement for your next home improvement project? When choosing your new floors, be sure to check out bamboo. Bamboo flooring is an
environmentally and budget-friendly
product with a variety of options and benefits.
Bamboo and Budget Bamboo flooring
prices vary. Be wary of retailers who tell you bamboo is 50% cheaper than traditional hardwoods. In actuality, quality bamboo flooring is comparable in price with most hardwoods, averaging
$2 to $4 per square foot
. If you’re choosing not to install the flooring yourself, it’s good to know that bamboo installation requires no special tools or training, so it should cost the same as installing any hardwood floor.
Provided you have the right tools and some willing helpers, laying bamboo flooring can be a fast home improvement project with dramatic, beautiful results. Aside from being attractive, it is available in several shades, easy to maintain, and ideal for people with allergies. It is also an
floor replacement option, with most brands offering 25-year warranties. Plus, bamboo flooring can be installed over many existing types of flooring, dramatically reducing the time and expense of a floor replacement project.
What’s So Green About Bamboo? Bamboo
has become a common flooring choice in recent years, and one of the reasons for this surge in popularity is that bamboo is a sustainable, renewable natural resource. This aspect of bamboo flooring gives homeowners the option of a high-quality, beautiful end product while also meeting their desire to reduce their environmental impact.
is a grass, not a tree, it reaches maturity in five years compared with the 50 years it takes to grow an oak suitable for flooring use. As well, bamboo is cut without killing the plant’s root, which actually begins to regrow immediately with very little human intervention (such as fertilization, herbicides, or pesticides). This makes bamboo a truly sustainable natural resource and, ultimately, an environmentally conscientious choice for floor replacement.
What’s better than a home improvement blog?
A local home improvement blog!
Sure it is fun to look at the large national blogs, but nothing beats the feeling of closeness with a blog that is being written in your backyard. From time to time we like to feature other local home improvement blogs and today’s selection is
and her blog on Home, Art, and Food. As a former editor for Home & Garden magazine, Katy is no stranger to home improvement or writing. One of her most recent projects has been purchasing a historic home
(250+ years old)
in Marblehead, Massachusetts and attempting to fully restore it.
One of our favorite posts from her blog is
The article includes a picture of a
Newspaper dated October 28th, 1942
that was stuffed in the walls as insulation. This piece is a unique look back at a time period that wasn’t so distant. Some great headlines include: Beat Back New JAP Drive In Solomons, Rationing Of Butter Is Certain, 40,000 Register For Oil Rations. Other great headlines and the full story can be
If you are more interested in the food pieces of her blog, follow
. Some great recipes include: Grapefruit and Meyer Lemon Marmalade, Lobster Rolls, and Popovers (some of you may remember these from The Cocke n’ Kettle in Uxbridge, MA).
If you are interested in restoring older homes and in food with a local flavor, Katy’s Blog will not disappoint. It is written with an authentic voice and tells a great story that plays out with each passing day. Be sure to check out the links below to learn how you can connect with Katy Elliott and her writing:
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Given our difficult economy, it is harder than ever to afford luxuries like vacations, weekly yoga lessons, and expensive day trips. Instead of spending money on this short-term entertainment, you should turn your backyard into your own private escape. Below are some great ideas to turn your backyard into a place of relaxation and escape from the real world.
Pondless Waterfalls Running water always seems to calm us. It may be that deep down connection to nature or just the fact that white noise has been known to have calming effects. While there are several water setups available for your backyard escape, some are more labor intensive than others. A full koi pond requires a lot of up keep and maintenance. Between feeding the fish, checking the water temperature, and winterizing the pond with every season, where are you going to fit in the time to enjoy the pond and relax?
A pondless waterfall gives you the benefits of running water for your backyard escape with none of the headaches of maintaining a full pond. They are relatively easy to construct, can be turned on and off with the flip of a switch, and will fit in any size yard.
Shaded Areas Now that you have your pondless waterfall setup, you need an area to relax. No one wants to lie down in the beating sun. Now you need to create a shaded area. If your yard doesn’t already have a shaded area, you may want to consider planting a tree or two or setting up a tasteful canopy.
Plush Outside Furniture Got Shade? Got Waterfall? Now you need some furniture! We would suggest splurging on some appealing and comfortable outside furniture. Often you can find plush cushions that can also stand up to the elements. Another great solution is the classic hammock. Can you think of a better way to spend a Sunday morning than lying on your hammock under your newly planted tress listening to the sound of your backyard waterfall? Enjoy your Sunday Zen!
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