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Old 03-09-2007, 11:34 PM  
Mike9825
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Default hey hey

Hello fellow DIY members. Mike is the name, turning wrenches and learning about home improvments our my games. I'm 23 years old moving out within the next year and want to learn about home improvments so i can perform them myself, know the job is done right and save a few bucks.

We currently live in a split level concrete slab home. It has been completely gutted, cleaned and remodeled the place inside and out. New siding, roof, landscaping and lawn treatment are the things we did/doing outside. The inside is where the magic happened. New carpet, laminate flooring in the kitchen, paint, new appliances except the fridge. New gas forced air tempstar 2 stage furnace and A/C, insulation, lighting fixtures and installed a 1/2 bath off the master suite. This forum looks like a good place and hoping to learn as much as
I can from here. -Mike-



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Old 03-10-2007, 09:27 AM  
glennjanie
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Welcome Mike:
We are glad to have you on the Fourm. There is plenty of information stored up here and you are welcome to it. Bring it on.
Glenn



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Old 03-10-2007, 04:40 PM  
Mike9825
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hey guys, here's some quick before and after pics of our home. Note the paint overspray in the 2nd before pic on the side and the new attic vent in 3rd pic. -Mike-



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Old 03-11-2007, 11:14 AM  
glennjanie
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Hello Mike:
It is a good looking house. I suspect that overspray you see in picture #2 is just the white paint 'chalking' and running down on the brick. Its a common problem with siding above brick and that's the only wall that has the siding flush with the brick. If it had been given an overhang, it wouldn't have shown the chalking.
The octacon vent is really nice; did you do it yourself? My wife Janie would love to have your bay windows.
Glenn

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Old 03-11-2007, 05:57 PM  
Mike9825
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the siding and the vent and HVAC were done by contractors who did very nice work. top dollar but you get what you pay for. the rest was done ourselves. thanks for compliments on the bay windows! the windows are Andersons, age unknown but they seem to be holding up nicely. -Mike-

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Old 03-11-2007, 09:13 PM  
glennjanie
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The Andersen brand rings my bell. I wouldn't have anything else if I were building new.
I've told this before, but you know how old men are, I want to hear it agian. The different window manufacturers used to come to our Home Builder's Meetings and present their wares. They always ended up saying, "They are just as good as an Andersen". Its nice to have a world standard to strive for.
Glenn

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Old 03-11-2007, 09:54 PM  
Mike9825
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I Agree, another good brand supposedly is Pella. never had experience with them but the mom seems to like them. what do you think about windows with that Argon gas filled, are they any good? -Mike-

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Old 03-12-2007, 09:21 AM  
glennjanie
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Yes, the argon gas serves a purpose and makes a better window. The best I can remember it has been shown to reflect the radiated heat back, whether saving the heat in the house in the winter months or keeping out the heat in summer. Its a win win situation.
I prefer Andersen because they stand firmly behind their 20 year gurantee, whether its a stripped crank on a casement or a leak in the insulating glass that causes the smokey look or many other things; Andersen will cheerfully replace it.
Glenn

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Old 03-12-2007, 09:26 AM  
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Gas fill has lots of benefits. Increases R value (we're talking windows, so technically, reduces U value), also assures that there is no moisture between the panes to cause condensation/fogging.

Overall what you want to look for is a window with the best OVERALL performance. Cheap windows will quote center pane U factor. Good ones will tell you about the entire window's performance. The frame is where the real differences show in windows.

It is easy for a cheap window to use low-e glass, Argon fill, etc. Then stick the glass into a low performance frame and you end up with performance that is effectively no better than a single pane unit.

Look at the displays showing cut-aways. Look for lots of separate chambers, count how many air spaces you have to go through to go from inside to outside. Look for "thermal breaks" in metal frames. See how many seals there are where the window opens and closes. Should be multiple seals and multiple types. Best to have interlocking "fingers" in the frame itself. An often overlooked area is the perimiter of the glazing pack itself. Many windows have an aluminum spacer between the panes of glass. That just acts as a direct path for heat to travel from one side to the other.

Enough rants. Look at what is out there. Check out the TOP of the line windows and then compare them to some of the cheaper ones and you will see the real differences are in the details.

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Old 03-12-2007, 09:39 AM  
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Here's a neat little test for your windows. We understand that if water can come through, then so can air, right?
O K lay an Andersen casement window on its back on saw horses, with it closed and locked.
Now, lay any other window beside it on the saw horses, again closed and locked.
Get a 5 gallon bucket of water for each window, have 2 people to pour the water at the same time. (I hope the guy who is filling the other window has his boots on).
Glenn



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