JELD-WEN’s Les Stephens Discusses Replacement Window Product Innovations and Sustainable Practices

Written by AnonymousAugust 8, 2011

RWFD:  When it comes to energy-efficiency, glass options are among the most important. What should home owners take into account when choosing the right glass with energy-efficiency in mind?

JW:  The simplest approach would be to select windows that are ENERGY STAR qualified. ENERGY STAR recommends a glazing package that is most energy and cost efficient for four U.S. climate zones. It is easy to select the right glazing package by making sure your windows meet the climate zone requirements for your area.

Pay attention to window labels including the solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC), which indicates the ability to block heat generated by sunlight. The greater the protection, the lower the SHGC. U-factor is also important, which is the amount of heat flowing through a product. The lower the number, the more energy efficient it is. Proper overhangs and where windows are located are also important. When building a home in a sunny region, place larger windows facing north.

The right glass can also help protect against UV exposure and keep interior furnishings from fading. Choose insulated Low-E glass, which reduces the amount of heat entering the home and lowers cooling needs. It also blocks up to 85 percent of harmful UV rays that cause interior fading.  Low-E glass is required for Energy Star compliance in all four climate zones.

Glazing packages aren’t just about energy efficiency. Decorative glass options like rain or reed glass can add a distinctive look to windows in bathrooms or entries. Homeowners who live in high wind areas may want to consider impact resistant glass like JELD-WEN’s Impact Gard™ protection. ImpactGard protection resists impacts from wind borne debris and keeps windows sealed and intact during storms.

RWFD:  As we can see, there is a wide assortment of JELD-WEN options from material and frames to color, hardware and glass. What key questions should home owners ask themselves to determine the right window for their needs?

Various product options such as type of glass or cladding will influence costs, aesthetics and performance. To help select windows that may work best for you, first determine your priorities and carefully research and evaluate product options. Consider these questions when shopping for windows:

  • What type of window material is best suited for my needs, architectural style and region?
  • What are the ENERGY STAR guidelines for my region to help my home be energy efficient?
  • What style of windows do I want – casement, awning, double-hung, etc.?
  • What is my budget?
  • What are the maintenance requirements?
  • Will I hire a contractor or install the windows myself?
  • What product features can help the geographic requirements of my region?
  • What types of warranties come with the windows?

RWFD:  Speaking of self-installing, can DIY-savvy consumers install windows themselves?

JW:  Proper installation and following the manufacturer’s specific requirements are a must to maintain warranties and keep windows looking and performing beautifully for years to come. There are some replacement window solutions available for DIY-savvy consumers, such as JELD-WEN’s pocket replacement window available in vinyl and AuraLast Wood.

JELD-WEN Wood and Clad-Wood Double-Hung and Premium Vinyl pocket windows are designed for installation into existing window frames. The process is simple, quick, and preserves more of the home’s structure- especially important for historic buildings. Experienced DIY-ers who replace existing windows with pocket windows or sash replacement kits can save as much as 60 percent on material, time and labor costs when compared to traditional window replacements.

JELD-WEN flush frame vinyl windows are designed to replace existing aluminum frame windows without removing the existing frame or siding. Windows can be ordered custom made to fit into existing openings. This also saves time and money and reduces replacement labor and debris.

RWFD:  What are ways in which home and business owners can determine whether or not their existing windows need replacing or repair?

JW:  Each home and situation is unique, so it’s best to seek the advice of a reputable contractor or window dealer. In general, if a window shows signs of wear and tear such as cracked paint but operates normally, then it’s likely able to be repaired according to the manufacturer’s instructions. In some circumstances where the following issues occur, you should consider replacing a window:

  • There is fog or moisture between the glass
  • Moisture or condensation on the glass
  • Wood decay
  • Problems opening or closing
  • Drafts
  • Excessive noise
  • High energy costs
  • Outdated technology such as single pane glass
  • Concerns that the existing windows do not meet today’s safety standards
  • Signs of water leakage around existing window frames may mean improper installation which may warrant a full tear out and installation of a new nail fin window rather than a replacement in the existing frame

Most windows can be replaced within the existing frame without disturbing siding or interior trim and replacement windows are custom sized.

RWFD:  Once a customer decides upon JELD-WEN windows, what should a customer do next?

JW:  Customers interested in JELD-WEN windows should visit to find a dealer in their area. A local JELD-WEN dealer will help them go through the process of selecting the right product, measuring the window openings and ordering the product for delivery. Online resources, tips, advice and product selection guides can also be found at

RWFD:  It’s been a pleasure hearing more about the JELD-WEN line of windows. Thank you!

JELD-WEN:  Thank you.


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